From a toilet to a TV, innovation comes in all shapes, sizes and prices. Below are some of the most innovative products that will save you lots of money in the long run. Joe Dunn, Deals2Buy.com
Dual-flush toilets. Did you know 40 percent of indoor water usage is flushed down a toilet? That's right, 55 billion gallons of clean water are sent down the pipes each day. Dual-flush toilets use different amounts of water for solid and liquid waste. Anywhere from 30 to 50 percent less water is flushed in addition to the $100 or so dollars saved each year.
Steam dishwashers. Steam dishwashers also help save on that water bill. Steam models can use up to 33 percent less water than the standard dishwasher. And studies have shown that steam dishwashers clean dishes better than their counterparts. Some models even offer owners the ability to customize the wash intensity for an upper rack of wine glasses and lower rack of crusted pots and pans. And if these features aren't enough, they're very quiet.
Wireless charging. Wireless charging isn't exactly reinventing the wheel, but it is efficient. Allowing the charge of up to three devices plus one USB port for a fourth on brands like Powermat, charging times come at speeds equivalent to or greater than the manufacturer-provided chargers. In addition, these models incorporate an auto-shutoff feature when charging is complete. By "wireless," products charge while they rest on top of the charging mat. Regardless, they come in handy during traveling when only a car charger or single electrical outlet is available.
LED lightbulbs. LED is the newest alternative to the current energy efficient fluorescent lightbulbs. But unlike fluorescent bulbs, LED lights contain no traces of the toxic element mercury. They are even found to be 5 percent more efficient than fluorescent and possess a life span of up to 50,000 hours. Purchase costs may be high, but only LED can say they will still be glowing 20 years from now.
LCD TVs. LCD is nothing new; liquid crystal display was first discovered as a technology in 1888. But these days, LCD is the standard in energy-efficient televisions. The past year offered up numerous improvements that are determined to save watts and bucks. For one, human presence sensors prompt the TVs to shut off after 30 minutes when no one is in the room. Additionally, illuminating backlights dim and brighten depending on the lighting present in the room. To cut off power completely, just flip a switch on the back panel to avoid paying for that energy use spent in "sleep mode." All of these are just some of the many ways LCD has once again redefined efficiency.