If you’re wondering how to lower your energy bill as a renter, or how to make your apartment more energy efficient, you’ve come to the right place. Although renters cannot make some of the major home improvements and modifications that homeowners can, you can still optimize your living space in a number of ways to save energy at home. Take a look at these easy energy-saving tips for apartment renters.
Make the case for energy-saving upgrades to your landlord. ENERGY STAR® appliances, double-pane windows, ceiling fans, low-flow shower heads, faucet aerators and smart thermostats can all increase property value while helping you to save money.
Adjust your thermostat settings to save energy when you’re not at home.
If your apartment has a mechanical thermostat, ask your landlord to replace it with a programmable model. If they decline, ask if you can make the switch yourself.
Apply non-adhesive window film to insulate your apartment.
Keep curtains closed on summer days to minimize heat gain; open curtains on winter days to let the sunshine warm your space.
If you have ceiling fans, turn your thermostat up a few degrees in summer and set your fans to rotate counterclockwise to distribute cool air; turn your thermostat down a few degrees in winter and set your fans to spin clockwise to push down the rising warm air.
For smaller areas, turn down your thermostat and use a space heater.
If your apartment building has an air conditioned lobby, clubhouse, lounge or fitness center, relax there to give your A/C a break.
Turn off lights and appliances when not in use.
Unplug small appliances and electronics when not being used or charged, to avoid drawing standby power.
Use smart power strips to turn electronics off after a set period of time.
Swap out incandescent lightbulbs for the more efficient light-emitting diodes (LEDs) in your most-used light fixtures. (Hint: Swap them back in when you move and take your LEDs with you!)
Ask your landlord to install dimmer switches to reduce lighting use.
Open vents in each room, even if unused, to distribute airflow evenly.
Keep furniture from blocking air vents.
Request that your landlord replace air filters monthly, or provide you with replacement filters so you can do it yourself.
Report leaky faucets, running toilets and air leaks around doors and windows to your landlord.
Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees, or ask your landlord to do so, to save energy and prevent scalding.
Opt for showers over baths to conserve hot water.
Take shorter showers.
Wash clothes in cold water to save energy on water heating.
Clean the lint trap in your dryer after every load.
Dry towels and heavier cottons separately from lighter-weight materials.
Run your dishwasher, clothes washer and dryer only when they have full loads.
Let dishes in your dishwasher air dry.
Cook with a pressure cooker, slow cooker, toaster oven or microwave instead of the oven or stove, when possible.
When you use your stove, make the most of your energy usage by covering pots and pans with lids.
Match pots and pans with the size of the stove burner.
Use the oven light to check on baking goods instead of opening the oven door, which lets hot air out.
Keep your fridge and freezer well-stocked so they don’t have to work as hard to keep items cool.
Following these easy energy-saving tips for renters can make your apartment more energy efficient and help reduce your electricity bill.