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Energy Saving Tips for Your Apartment

MyApartmentMap - Nov 2, 2010

With energy costs high and no relief in sight, we figured it was time to make a list of some of the small things you can do to cut down on energy consumption.

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Heating Tips

Take advantage of free solar heat (ie. the sun) – keep blinds open in the day to let in sun, close them at night to hold in the heat

Check your heaters filter, does it need replacing? If so, replace it. This should be a once a month type of project

Set thermostat at 68 degrees, 2-3 degrees lower if you’ll be away from the house for several hours

Do you have a fireplace? If so, close the flue when not in use

Use warm clothes, blankets, etc. to feel warmer. This will allow you to lower your thermostat temp. Don’t be afraid to snuggle with a loved one, or even a pet!

Caulk and weatherstrip around doors and windows. It’s inexpensive, and it can significantly reduce drafts and improve comfort. Drafts are the number source of enery/heat leakage in the home.

Turn off exhaust fans immediately after use. Exaust fans are actually blowing your heated air outside

Use ceiling fans (”backwards”) to circulate warm air down from the ceiling. You will be amazed at what a difference this makes. Remember, warm air rises 

Cooking helps heat your home – but don’t use the oven as a primary heat source. Using the oven to heat your home can be extremely dangerous

Have your heat pump or furnace serviced at least once annually. Ensure that it is running efficiently

Cooling Tips  

Control solar heat – keep windows shaded to keep out direct sun. Dark wooden blinds seem to work the best.

 

Replace filter in air conditioning unit at least once a month. If you can’t replace, at least remove it and clean it in the sink or shower

Set thermostat at 79 degrees, 2-3 degrees higher if you’ll be away from the house for several hours

Use ceiling fans to make your home feel cooler. You want to keep the fans on “forward” to ensure the warm air is sucked up. Basically, do the opposite of trying to warm your house:) 

Turn off all unnecessary lights and appliances – they add heat to your home and cost you money

Do cooking and other heat producing chores during cooler parts of the day (morning or evening). If you have an outdoor grill, fire it up. Not only is grilling a great way to reduce the heat inside your home, it’s healthy!

Turn off exhaust fans after use. Again, you are blowing your cooler air outside. Remember when your folks used to say, “Hey, we’re not heating the outside”? Well, we’re not trying to cool the outside either

Ask the landlord to service the AC at least once a year. This should not be a problem, especially if the landlord would like the unit to last more than a couple of years. If the unit seems as though it’s not cooling your home efficiently, ask the landlord to replace.

Water Heating and Lowering Water Consumption Tips  

Use low flow fixtures/faucet aerators

Don’t let hot water run when shaving, brushing teeth, doing dishes, etc.

If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down

Do only full loads of wash

Use cold or warm water wash instead of hot to save

Lights/Appliances  

Turn off when not in use(Duh!)

Use compact fluorescent lamps instead of traditional light bulbs. There are a slew of energy savinf lightbulbs on the market. They tend to cost more up front, but end up saving you money in the long run