Have you turned an old appliance over to Baltimore Gas and Electric Co.? You're in good company, if so.
BGE said this week that customers have recycled 30,000 appliances through its Smart Energy Savers Program, which offers $50 "rewards" for giving up an old (but still working) refrigerator or freezer plus $25 more for recycling a room air conditioning unit at the same time.
The effort is part of a statewide push to encourage energy efficiency. New appliances use less energy -- a lot less, in some cases -- than models built years ago, making them cheaper to operate.
A refrigerator made last year uses half the energy of one built in 1990, says the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers. Ditto dishwashers. A new clothes washer, meanwhile, uses about 75 percent less energy -- despite being bigger.
BGE said its recycling program has saved more than 46,000 megawatt-hours of electricity "by removing these inefficient appliances from the electric grid," the equivalent of powering more than 4,700 homes for an entire year.
The utility said customers can schedule a free pickup of appliances, though households can recycle no more than two fridges or freezers through the program. (And remember, they have to still work.) Room AC units are eligible if you're also scheduling a pickup of a fridge or freezer.
More details at BGERecycleMyOldFridge.com.