Sustainable Putnam

4. Upgrade to efficient electric appliances

Natural gas and propane appliances are climate changers, emitting Greenhouse Gases and indoor air pollutants that cause asthma and other health ailments in our youngest and oldest family members. 


Today’s electric appliances are clean and more efficient than fossil-fueled models. Cost savings, cleaner planet, better health: three reasons to upgrade!


Learn more below!


Induction Cooktops Traditional electric cooktops use resistance heating, a very inefficient way to create heat from electricity. They take a lot of time to heat up and cool down slowly, making them difficult to regulate. By contrast, induction cooktops use  magnetic induction. It heats only the cookware, leaving the surface relatively cool to the touch. Induction cooktops respond super quickly to heating adjustments. In fact, induction cooktops are preferred by chefs throughout Europe today! If your cooktop still has some life left in it, consider a countertop induction cook plate.

Induction is by far the most efficient cooking method.

Convection Ovens use small fans to circulate heated air around food, significantly decreasing cooking times to save energy and money. Full sized convection oven prices have come down in recent years. Some are competitive with standard electric resistance ovens. A small convection toaster oven or “air fryer” — a type of convection oven — makes a nice alternative for small cooking jobs. 

Refrigerators If your refrigerator is more than nine years old,  it may pay to replace it even before it breaks down. In addition to its Energy Star rating, it’s also important to consider the type of refrigerants, the gaseous compound in refrigerators and all heat pump appliances. Certain refrigerants, such as R134a, are extremely potent greenhouse gases that are many times more harmful than carbon dioxide. Look at the specification plate inside your fridge (or in the Energy Star ratings) and choose a model using the much less harmful R600a refrigerant.  You can find HFC-free models at

Finally, be sure to recycle your old fridge through your appliance retailer,  NYSEG, or Central Hudson recycling program.

Click the Flip your Fridge button below to evaluate the potential savings in replacing your current refrigerator today.


Heat Pump Clothes Dryers essentially dehumidify your clothes without using heat or much electricity, and require no vent. Conventional clothes dryers vent hot, moist air outside your home. You’ll save money and your clothes will last longer too.

High Efficiency Clothes Washers save energy and money in several ways. They use less water, less soap or detergent, and less electricity. And because they use less water, you’ll also save on hot water costs when you wash in warm or hot water. 

To learn more about these clean, energy efficient alternatives, visit

Yard & Garden

Most people don’t consider the environmental impact of their yard and garden tools. Surprisingly, your lawn mower, leaf blower, and snow blower may create more air and noise pollution than your automobile per hour of use. That’s because, unlike automobiles, they are largely unregulated and lack modern fuel efficiency and noise reduction technologies. 

That’s why it makes sense to make your next purchase of lawn and garden tools to clean electric models. Lawnmowers leaf blowers, weed whackers, even chainsaws and snow blowers are now available as battery powered models. (For smaller yards and gardens, consider human-powered options too!) You’ll eliminate the use of fossil fuels, air and noise pollution. Not to mention most maintenance!  Electric tools have many fewer moving parts, and require no oil changes or engine maintenance. 

Did you know that operating a typical small lawn mower for one hour can produce the equivalent hydrocarbon emissions as driving a car for 93 miles. Talk about inefficient. The latest battery-powered electric models are extremely efficient with greater power and far less noise than their gasoline counterparts.  When you need to replace a gasoline powered tool, choose a clean electric model, and say goodbye to gasoline and oil!

For more information, click the Healthy Yards button below.

Research before you buy, at

Be sure to research your purchase options on the Energy Star website. You'll find efficiency ratings and other helpful information. They've also added a Most Efficient rating for the very best models.

Download our step-by-step Planning Worksheets today!

The most economical time to replace appliances is when they break down — and then it's a scramble to replace it ASAP. That's why we created this research and planning guide to use today, while you have the time. Our downloadable Clean Energy Planning Worksheets will help you plan your appliance replacements so that when the time is right, you're ready to purchase and install.