Upgrade to an energy-efficient heat pump clothes dryer

We like all types of electric clothes dryers, but we especially love heat pump clothes dryers. Heat pump clothes dryers use less energy, don’t require ventilation, and are gentler on clothes.

Why do it?

Electric dryers don’t burn fossil fuels or release carbon pollution, and heat pump clothes dryers are the most efficient type of electric dryer.


When your current dryer is near end-of-life.

Who is this for?

Homeowners and renters.

Read more about heat pump clothes dryers

Costs and benefits

Upfront cost


Average lifespan

10-13 years

Average annual energy savings



Can be placed anywhere in home; doesn’t require ventilation


Easy, but you might need an electrician if you’re switching from gas to electric

Energy savings

Uses 50 percent less energy compared to standard dryers

Our Takeaway

Heat pump clothes dryers are efficient and good for the climate.

Rebates and Credits

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Learn more about heat pump clothes dryers

Guide to heat pump clothes dryers

Find out why heat pump clothes dryers are more energy efficient and better for your home and the environment.

Written by: The Switch is On

What is a heat pump clothes dryer

Written by: ENERGY STAR

How heat pump clothes dryers work

Written by: Massachusetts Clean Energy Center

Heat pump vs. condenser dryer

Written by: Canstar Blue

Why upgrade to a heat pump dryer

Produced by: ENERGY STAR

Heat pump clothes dryer walkthrough

Produced by: This Old House

Project guide

1. Decide on the type of dryer that meets your needs

You can choose from multiple types of electric dryers:

  • Heat pump dryer: Most energy efficient, 1.5-hour dry time, ventless (no hole in wall). Gentle on your clothes. Also comes in a hybrid heat pump/electric resistance model.

  • Condensing dryer: Medium energy efficiency, 2-hour dry time, ventless (no hole in wall). Also comes in a 120 Volt combined washer/dryer model that doesn’t require a new circuit.

  • Electric resistance dryer: Least energy efficient, 1-hour dry time, vented to outside. Although it’s less efficient than a heat pump dryer, it’s still much better for the climate than gas!

Figure out what type of dryer you currently have. If your dryer is plugged into a big, round 240 Volt outlet, you have an electric dryer. If your dryer has a hose (that’s often yellow) connected to the back, you have a gas dryer. If you can’t find either of these two things, look for a label on your dryer.

If you currently have an electric dryer: You probably don’t need to upgrade your wiring. 

If you currently have a gas or propane dryer: You’ll likely need a new 240 Volt, 20 or 30 Amp circuit, unless you choose a 120 Volt dryer. Check out our panels and wiring page for more details. You’ll also likely need a contractor (like a plumber) to cut and cap the existing fuel line.

Read reviews and shop around online to find a dryer that meets your needs. Consider features like energy efficiency, drying time, dryer capacity, and whether the dryer is vented or ventless. If you select a heat pump dryer, many models are compact (4 cubic feet), although full size (6+ cubic feet) models are also available. But don’t discount the compact models too quickly — studies have found that 95% of loads people dry would actually fit inside a compact dryer!

Most big-box retailers will provide installation options when you purchase an appliance. Install and enjoy your climate-friendly new clothes dryer!


Will I need to do any electrical work to install a heat pump dryer in my home?

If you have an electric dryer already, you should be good to go. If you have a gas dryer, you’ll likely need a new 240 Volt circuit with a 20–30 Amp circuit breaker. Check out our panels and wiring page for more details, or consult an electrician. If you want to free up more space on your electrical panel, look for a 120 Volt ventless dryer.

Many models come with a hose for draining the water into an existing drain, but some come with a water tank that will need to be emptied after use.

A common recommendation is to size your dryer with about twice the capacity of your washing machine. Many heat pump dryers are compact (4 cubic feet), although there are some full-size heat pump dryers with a 7.4 cubic foot drum that are comparable to regular vented dryers.

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