10 energy saving tips for tenants that help you lower your electricity bills

You do not have to make major changes to your living space to do so more energy efficient. Yes, project like weather shreddingbuys energy efficient appliances or insulating your attic can help reduce your energy use. But tenants also have options.

You can not exactly undergo large projects as an apartment dweller or tenant because even small changes can result in a lease violation. The good news is that there are tricks and devices that can help you with long-term savings.

With gas and water bills and energy prices up by 30% from last year, it is important to think about energy savings. extinguishes light, set your thermostat to an ideal temperature and shower instead of bathing are some obvious ways to cut down, but there are some other tricks to save as a tenant. Here are 10 handy ways to start saving now.

1. Change lighting

When I moved into my apartment in Charlotte, North Carolina, one of the first things I did was install smart lighting. Why? It’s simple and oh so effective. Replacing just a few light bulbs in your lights or ceiling lights can have a huge impact on your monthly bills.

In addition, smart lighting will not break the bank. You can find several smart LED lights from reputable brands like costs $ 20 apiece or less.

And if you want to save big on your electricity bill but do not necessarily want everything smart, ordinary LED lights are a good place to start. With or without smart, Led lamps are much more efficient than old light bulbs. In fact, LED bulbs use about 75% less than incandescent bulbs.

Get the most out of your thermostat

Smart thermostats which automatically adjusts the temperature in your room is one of the most effective ways to save. Many newer apartments come with smart thermostats already installed, but what if you do not have an apartment with a smart thermostat? You can always talk to your landlord about installing one yourself, but once a smart thermostat is installed, it will be difficult to remove it again when you inevitably move out.

The good news is that a standard thermostat is also efficient; Energy Star says that a properly used programmable model can add up to $ 180 in annual savings. To save the most, make sure you set your thermostat to the ideal temperatures both summer and winter.

According to the US Department of Energy, the best technique for staying cool while minimizing the cost of energy in the summer is to keep your home warmer than usual when no one is home and then set the temperature as high as possible when you are home. And it’s similar for winter: it’s best to keep your thermostat at 68 F for most of the day during the winter season and then you can lower the temperature by between 7 and 10 degrees when you’re away or asleep.

Here are more tips Save energy and money with your thermostat.

Smart thermostats have extra features that help you save money over time.

Chris Monroe / CNET

3. Wash properly

As someone who washes 2-3 times a week, I am always looking for ways to wash more efficiently so that my monthly energy and water bills are not dizzyingly high. There are several tips to save in the laundry room which does not require hand washing or linen drying of your clothes.

A simple trick? Get cold. Just washing your clothes in cold water can have a big impact on your savings because as much as 90% of the energy used to wash a load goes to heating the water, according to Consumer Reports.

4. Disconnect devices and appliances

Be careful with energy vampires (and no, I’m not talking about Edward Cullen). Energy vampires are devices and appliances that consume electricity when connected but not used. Some items such as toasters and phone chargers constantly consume energy and increase your bills, so just unplugging these items can help you save.

Find out exactly how much you can save by disconnecting appliances here.


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5. Shower smarter

The average American household uses more than 300 liters of water every day, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Of course, shorten your showers can help you save on your water bills, but you can also consider buying a low-flow shower head. The EPA estimates that the average household can save $ 70 in annual water and energy costs by switching to a WaterSense-approved shower head.

Are you looking for more smart devices that can help you save on your tools? Try these devices.

6. Clean the dishes properly

I have already mentioned how much water an average household uses. But did you know that using so much water equates to about $ 83 a month in water costs? In addition to shortening showers, showering instead of bathing and using special shower heads, some washing methods can help you cut back as well.

It may be hard to believe, but running your dishwasher uses less water and less energy than hand washing. Cleaning dishes in the sink can use up to 27 liters of water per charge, while an Energy Star-certified dishwasher can use as little as 3 liters per charge. An Energy Star dishwasher can also use less than half the energy to wash dishes by hand.

Read more: How much money can Energy Star appliances save you?

Water from a tap that flows into a soap dish

Running your dishwasher uses less water and less energy than hand washing.

Jessica Dolcourt / CNET

7. Check for leaks and other maintenance problems

A simple water leak, a constantly running toilet or a window that is not completely tight can cost you a lot when it comes to monthly tools. Scan your apartment from time to time for potential dangers or broken objects and then notify your landlord.

Professional tips: Also make sure you replace your air filter at least every three months to prevent your plumbing system from working harder than it needs to.

8. Set your water heater to its ideal temperature

The Department of Energy says that hot water heating can account for 14% -18% of an average electricity bill. Simply turning your water heater down to 120 degrees Fahrenheit from the default setting can save up to $ 400.

If you live in a terraced house or other rental where you have access to the water heater, you can adjust the setting yourself. If you do not have access, ask your landlord or maintenance staff for help.

Learn more about yours water heaters and potential savings here.

Close-up of a water heater's control knob

Most water heaters are set to 140 degrees Fahrenheit as standard.

Taylor Martin / CNET

9. Figure out what you shall spend

When paying monthly bills, it is important to pay attention to your state’s average cost of utilities to make sure you do not overpay.

In the United States, the average cost of tools for tenants is $ 240 per month. This estimate includes the basic tools that most apartment dwellers and tenants are responsible for – electricity, gas and water – but that number will vary based on location, usage and extra charges such as rubbish, pest control, cable and internet costs.

You can use this interactive map to check the average cost of tools in your state. You can also use an energy cost calculator to estimate your monthly energy use in homes.

10. Talk to your landlord

If you try these tips and tricks, but still want to improve the energy efficiency of your home, there is no danger in contacting your landlord. You can ask if the property owner is willing to make any changes to the apartment or townhouse, such as installing a smart thermostat or sealing strips. If not, you can always follow up by asking if you can make the improvements yourself to get compensation later.

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