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Steps for Saving Energy

From the fridge to the washing machine, we've got a few quick energy-saving tips for your appliances that can save you big money.

"By doing general maintenance on appliances you are going to lower energy uses and also save on repair costs," says Gary Mayfield.

Repairman Gary Mayfield knows the tricks of the trade when it comes to saving money -- starting with something we all have, a refrigerator.

"One of the main things is keeping it in an air conditioned space. Refrigerators in garages work about 50 percent harder. You are going to use a lot more energy and the longevity of the unit is going to be cut down," says Gary.

You may have heard about cleaning the coils every year. But Gary recommends going a step further.

"On the door seals all you want to do is take a solution of warm soapy water, just dish soap. Wipe the top and front and keep those clean. You also want to pay attention to the unit where the door shuts and clean that also. After you clean the gaskets, I recommend using silicone grease. Just rubbing a little on your fingers and go around the face of the gasket. That will allow the face to slide on the box, especially on the hinge side. That will allow it to seal better and decreases damage to seals," says Gary.

It is very important that you clean the strainer in your dishwasher.

According to Gary, "On the bottom of the dishwasher is some sort of strainer or plate to catch any food debris. You want to pull it out every couple of loads and wash it out. Then you reassemble it and put it back in. It allows it to clean dishes better because water can get back to the pump."

In other words, the dishwasher doesn't have to work as hard to clean the dishes, saving you on energy costs.

You should also make your cook top is clean, which will allow for heat to transfer more efficiently.

"On electric and on gas, keep the burners clean. And, especially on the gas to get a proper flame you want to get the right size pot to fit the burner.

Gary has a warning for cleaning your stove.

"If you spill something in the burner or the burner tray let the unit cool before you wipe it up. That will save any damage. Cold water hitting on the hot cook tops, which tends to crack them and that's a pretty expensive repair," says Gary.

When it comes to your washer, take the detergent tray out and clean it. The buildup can keep the machine from running the right way.

"Use the high speed spin. It takes excess water out of the clothes, which is going to decrease your time in the dryer, again saving you power and money. You want to use cold water whenever possible. Most soaps do work just fine in cold water and you are saving the cost of heating the water," says Gary.

For more information about Mr. Appliance visit

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Due to the pre-recorded nature of this program, some prices may not be current. Please check your local retailer.

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