How to Save Electricity in an Apartment
Discovering how to save electricity in an apartment will lower your monthly bills. Follow these simple steps to save money and electricity.
Step 1: Use the Smaller Appliance
A smaller appliance generally uses less electricity than a larger one. For example, toast bread with a toaster oven instead of a full-sized oven, or warm up a casserole in the microwave or toaster oven instead of a full-sized oven. Warming up water in an electric teapot will save more electricity than heating water on the stovetop.
Step 2: Maintain Your Refrigerator
Refrigerators are big users of electricity that are never unplugged. Since in most apartments the landlord supplies the appliances, you may not have a choice on whether you're using an energy-conserving appliance or not. However, you can maintain your refrigerator so that is using as little electricity as possible.
Make sure the gaskets around the door are sealing correctly. If not, ask your landlord to replace them, or do it yourself, as it will probably be financially beneficial for you in the long-term. Place a piece of paper between the door and the gasket, then close the door. If the paper pulls out easily, your door is not sealing very well and allowing warm air into your refrigerator, requiring it to use more energy. Make sure that your refrigerator and freezer aren't set any lower than necessary. Your refrigerator shouldn't be set any lower than 36 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees C). A freezer can keep food safely frozen at 0 degrees F (-18 degrees C).
Step 3: Unplug
Determine how many appliances and electronics don't need to be plugged in all the time. Although clocks and answering machines need to stay plugged in continually, computers, printers, TVs, stereos, lamps, coffee makers and hairdryers do not. Around the entertainment center and desks, use a power strip to plug in everything than can be turned off when someone isn't in the room. This will make it simple; merely turn off the power strip switch when necessary.
Step 4 - Invest in Heavy Drapes for Windows
Heavy drapes will save you electricity during winter and summer. During the summer, they will block out the sun from your home, helping keep the apartment cool. In the winter, the drapes will help keep warm air from leaking out through the windows.
Step 5 - Weather Strip Doors and Windows
Weather stripping is a good investment. It's not expensive or difficult to install, and works to keep cold air inside in the summer and warm air inside in the winter. Doors and windows in apartments often have cracks. If you don't want to pay for it, perhaps your landlord is interested in purchasing the weather stripping, so that it can stay in the apartment after you leave.
Step 6 - Use Lighting Wisely
Turning off lights whenever you leave a room will save you money, if it is an incandescent bulb. Fluorescent bulbs, however, use more energy powering up, and should only be turned off if you are leaving a room for more than 15 minutes or so. Although fluorescent lights shouldn't be used in bathrooms or areas of high moisture, switching from an incandescent bulb to a fluorescent one can cut down on your electricity bill. A fluorescent bulb is more expensive, but it will last several times longer and use less energy. Incandescent bulbs put off more heat than fluorescent bulbs, so during summer months they are an even less efficient choice. Where incandescent bulbs are used, a dimmer switch is a great way to use less energy.