Make your life efficient, your wallet heavy, and your conscience light.

Cut Dishwasher Costs with a Bobble

This is a simple step with quite astounding results. In 2011, after yet another spilled glass of water on a bedside table at night, my entire family bought a Bobble bottle each. They are a reusable water bottle with a charcoal filter at the top.

Simple - a Bobble Bottle

Simple – a Bobble Bottle

Why am I talking about them? Because not only did they prevent me having to get up at 3am to mop up yet another spilled glass of water on the bedside table, they suddenly meant that whenever we were thirsty, we didn’t need to go to a press and get a glass. And then wash that glass in a dishwasher. That meant the dishwasher didn’t fill up half as quickly, and so it didn’t need to be put on half as much, and so it didn’t need to be emptied half as much. So what do we actually end up saving?

The Calculations:
We used to put on the dishwasher five times a week. The bobbles halved this figure. Since 2011, it has saved 2.5 dishwasher cycles a week, 2.5 * 4 = 10 a month, 10 * 12 = 120 cycles a year. Since 2011, that is 120 * 5 = 600 dishwasher cycles. Our dishwasher consumes 1.44 kWh per cycle, so the bobbles are averting 1.44 * 120 = 172.8 kWh per year. That’s a financial saving of 172.8 kWh * €.17 / kWh = €29.38 per year. The financial payback of this investment is €17.98 / €29.38 = 0.61 years. This one pays for itself in 7 months! Over ten years, the return will be €29.38 * 10 = €293.8 – the initial investment of €17.98 = €275.82. Finally, not running the dishwasher saves 172.8 kWh of electricity generation a year, which emits 535g CO2 per kWh in Ireland, so 172.8 * 535 = 92,448 / 1000 = 92.448 kgCO2. The manufacture of the bottle will result in some emissions, but it’s likely to be a lot less than this, so this one will definitely result in emissions savings over its lifetime.

In summary:

  • Capital Cost: 2 Bobbles at €8.99 each: €8.99 * 2 = €17.98
  • Savings: 172.8 kWh | €29.38 | 92.448 kgCO2
  • Payback period: €17.98 / €29.38 = 0.61 years. This one pays for itself in 7 months!
  • 10 year payback: €275.82

As a side benefit, Bobbles are BPA free. BPA is a nasty chemical used to make most plastics. It’s been linked with cancer and most reputable governments will get around to banning it, but the plastic industry has lobbied to delay this because it makes making plastic cheap. In the meantime, it’s probably best not to drink water which has had a chance to pick up a relaxing BPA infusion!

Given this small investment pays for itself in 7 months, goes on to save us €275.82 over a ten year period, AND has removed the prospect of having to get up at 3am to mop up a spilled glass of water.. This is probably one to go for now. I talk about Bobble bottles here, because that’s what we picked up, but I see there are many brands that will do the same trick.
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