What if all Europeans used a dishwasher?

Significant energy and water consumption savings could be made by increasing the penetration rate of dishwashers within European homes.

Today, roughly half of European households have a dishwasher. While this number is already quite significant, there are many good and important reasons to further increase the penetration of dishwashers into households and promote their use.

This analysis shows that significant savings in terms of energy and water consumption could be made by increasing the penetration rate of dishwashers within European homes. A boost to employment and growth could also be expected if households, currently doing the washing-up by hand, were to switch to using a dishwasher.

DecarbEurope partner APPLiA, which represents the home appliance industry in Europe, believes that the calculations and analysis outlined within this report could be especially relevant in the context of the revision of the Ecodesign and energy labelling regulations for dishwashers.

How much energy could be saved?

In 2015, the energy savings made by EU households using a dishwasher was 38 TW/h – this is just a bit more than the total energy consumption of Hungary in 2014. The estimated energy savings if all EU28 households had a dishwasher would be an extra 92 TW/h. Or, to put it simply, more than the total annual energy consumption of Belgium (84 TW/h).

And what about water savings?

In 2015, EU households using a dishwasher saved an approximate annual total of 2531 billion litres of water compared to the amount they would have used washing their dishes by hand. The water savings would be approximately 6142 billion litres if consumers across the EU28 used a dishwasher. That’s more than the volume of water that can be held in 2.5 million Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Please note that these calculations were made based on the double assumption that (1) households do not pre-rinse their dishes before putting them in their dishwasher, and that (2) consumers use the eco-mode cycle every time.

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