Top 10 Tips for Renters to Reduce Their Energy Bills

  1. Lighting is an easy place to start and you can take the bulbs with you when you move. Replace the most used bulbs with LED lights that use 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs. You should also turn off the lights when you don’t need them to further your savings.
  2. Weather Seal your doors. If there is air leakage around your doors, add weatherstripping. It is inexpensive and works great to create a tight seal. If you can see light around the door or feel air moving on a windy day – this will greatly improve the comfort of your space.
  3. Install thermal curtains on your windows and sliding glass doors. These heavy fabric curtains will not only insulate but will also stop air movement into your living space.
  4. Use draft snakes. Air leakage is the primary way we waste energy in modern construction. Adding these to door and window seals will improve your comfort by stopping cold air from creeping in.
  5. Add power strips to all your electronics, then turn them all the way off when not in use. Phantom loads exist around your apartment. These devices usually have a remote or a red light showing they are always on and ready to serve you – think television. Turning these electronics off when you don’t need them will cut the wasted energy and help you reduce your overall bills.
  6. Install a low-flow showerhead. Shorter showers and low-flow showerheads are great combinations to reduce energy usage. You should also check the settings on your hot water heater to make sure it is not set to heat higher than 120 degrees
  7. Make sure all air registers are clear of any furniture so the space is getting the proper airflow. This along with making sure you are not storing anything up against the heating/cooling system in your space will allow the system to run efficiently. While you are at it, check the air filter and make sure it is clean, this should be done every 3 months.
  8. Wash your clothes with cold water whenever possible. You should also only wash full loads of laundry.
  9. Clean out the lint trap on your dryer before every load. Also, don’t over-dry your clothes – reduce the run time, let them run efficiently and you will save money.
  10. Install gaskets behind all switches and electrical outlets. These are huge holes in the thermal envelope of your space – stop the air moment through the walls.

Bonus tip:

11. Before renting – ask the landlord what they have done to improve comfort and reduce energy usage for your unit!