Philips irons save energy - but not much cashWhich? calculates savings of about £5 per year

11 May 2010

Philips EnergyCare iron

Philips is the latest iron manufacturer to launch ‘green’ irons – but Which? calculates they'll only save you around £5 a year.

Philips claims its new EnergyCare irons save energy through their handles. When the handle is pressed down, the iron steams as normal. When you lift the pressure off the handle, Philips says the steam supply is cut off immediately.

This functionality should mean a 20% reduction in the amount of energy used by the iron, according to the manufacturer. While the claimed 20% is laudible in environmental terms, most shoppers would want to know the saving in cash, too.

Saving on your bill

Which? did some quick calculations based on an average of two hours of ironing a week. Assuming electricity costs 13.1 pence per kWh, that 20% saving will be about £5 a year on your electricity bill,  because a whole year's worth would be £25 normally.

Liz Edwards, Which? home editor, said: 'Lots of manufacturers are making claims about energy saving, but shoppers also want to know how much cash these translate into, and that's where Which? comes in. 

'We test lots of appliances for their energy use because for some products - fridge freezers, in particular - this can make a huge difference to the cost of the purchase if you consider the long term. However, for this iron, we've estimated it's only £5 a year.'

Energy-saving irons

There are three EnergyCare irons from Philips, with recommended prices of £45 for the GC3620 and GC3630 and £50 for the GC3640. They are available at Argos, Amazon, Tesco and department stores.

We'll be testing the Philips EnergyCare GC3640 iron soon – check back in late July 2010 to see how it performs. In the meantime, you can check out our steam irons review for test results for 129 of the latest irons and steam generators, including 31 Best Buys.

Our review includes test results from another 'green' iron. When we reviewed the we found that it used the same amount of energy on its eco setting as a normal Bosch iron does on a low steam setting. 

Choosing an iron

Read our guides on how to buy an iron and watch our video guide to getting the best results from your iron. If you want to save energy around the home, why not read our advice guides to using less electricity and how to buy energy saving products

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