A new set of DOE standards aims to make refrigerators more energy-efficient.

Earlier this week, the Department of Energy (DOE) issued a new mandate designed to increase the energy efficiency of home appliances.

The new standards set by the DOE went into effect on September 15, requiring all new refrigerator models to be 25 percent more efficient than traditional units that are in use today, and approximately 80 percent more eco-friendly than models used in the mid-1970s.

"Refrigerator standards have been quietly saving consumers money while protecting our environment for more than 35 years," David Goldstein, energy program co-director at the Natural Resources Defense Council, tells Sustainable Business."But these new standards are the coolest yet, because they show that innovation can keep driving improvements even after decades of progress. New fridges do an even better job of keeping our food fresh and providing consumer amenity, yet they use only one-fifth the electricity they used to – and that means less pollution from power plants."

The hope with these upgrades is to save homeowners money on electricity and utility costs by approximately $200-300 per year. While all refrigerator manufacturers will have to cross over to a method that makes the units more efficient, homeowners who opt for Energy Star model fridges will save an additional 10 percent on energy costs, according to reports.

Making smart purchases like this may seem like a hassle in the short term, but the longevity of these items is likely to save you significant sums in the long run. As we head into winter, it could be wise to invest in products that will save on energy costs. From new refrigerators to glass replacement window panes, there are a number of upgrades you can make to make your home more energy-efficient and cost-effective. If you are interested in learning more about how glass can help in this endeavor, contact Valley Glass today.