Energy Saving Tips
Switch to LED bulbs
LED Bulbs use 80-90% less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs. Now is a great time to switch out your old lightbulbs. Stores throughout New Jersey are now offering instant rebates on ENERGY STAR® LED lighting products to promote energy efficiency. This means that you will find deeply discounted prices on lighting products, and there is no paperwork required in order to receive the rebate! Credit For This Tip
Install a programmable thermostat
Install a programmable thermostat to save up to 10% on cooling and heating costs. Credit For This Tip
Use the sun for free heat
That bright orb in the sky should be the focus of temperature control in your residence throughout the year. Open the curtains on your south-facing windows during winter days to bring free heat into your home. Close your window coverings when the sun goes down to keep the heat inside. Credit For This Tip
Bundle up with warm accessories
This is one of the easiest ways to save on your heating bill. Instead of turning the heat up, put on a cozy winter sweater and warm socks. Keep throw blankets on your couch, and add an area rug to insulate the floor. Credit For This Tip
Use ceiling fans to your advantage
Homes that have better ventilation and airflow can be more energy efficient in the summer and winter months. If you have ceiling fans in your apartment, you have more control over ventilation than you know. Ceiling fans can be used strategically to achieve better airflow: counter-clockwise will push hot air up in the summer and clockwise will trap heat inside to keep your rooms warmer during cooler months. Turn your ceiling fan on a low setting to gently push hot air back down. Credit For This Tip
Adjust the thermostat at night
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can save about 10 percent per year on your heating bills by turning your thermostat down 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours. Consider investing in flannel sheets and a warm comforter for your bed and keeping your apartment cooler when you sleep. Credit For This Tip
Only heat the rooms you use
If you have rooms that you never use, like guest rooms or large storage areas, close and seal off the vents in those rooms to be more energy efficient and direct the flow of air to the rooms you use most. Energy bills run, on average, $183 per month. By using a space heater in the rooms where you need it and setting the thermostat to 62 degrees, you can save approximately $200 each year. Credit For This Tip
Keep your furnace clean and unblocked
Get a humidifier to add moisture to the air
The air inside your home can become very dry. Moist air feels warmer and holds heat better, so a humidifier can help you feel comfortable when your thermostat is set at a lower temperature. You can also increase the humidity in your apartment with a collection of house plants. Credit For This Tip
Invest in insulation
Hundreds of thousands of dollars in energy costs are lost each year due to escaping heat and cold air in homes without proper insulation. Get some inexpensive insulation from your local home improvement store, and cover up all those areas where heat might escape. Start with foam weather stripping for your doors and windows; it's cheap and is extremely easy to apply. Credit For This Tip
Decorate with LED lights for the holidays
Buy new LED holiday lights, which use at least 75 percent less energy and last 25 times longer than older, incandescent lighting. In addition to consuming less energy, LED lights don't emit as much heat and are more resistant to breakage, making them a safer alternative. Bonus tip: Always unplug your holiday lights before going to bed or leaving the house. As with all appliances and electronics, your holiday lights will continue to draw power even when not in use, which adds unnecessary expense to utility bills. Credit For This Tip
Only use exhaust fans when necessary
Exhaust fans in your kitchen and bathroom pull the hot air that rises to the ceiling out of your apartment. Use exhaust fans sparingly, and shut them off when you are done with them. Credit For This Tip
Air leaks are among the greatest sources of energy loss in a home. One of the quickest energy- and money-saving tasks you can do is caulk, seal, and weatherstrip all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside. By sealing uncontrolled air leaks, you can save 10%–20% on your heating and cooling bills. Credit For This Tip
Check your air ducts
Air ducts are one of the most important systems in your home, as they carry the air from your home’s furnace and central air conditioner to each room. If the ducts are poorly sized, poorly sealed, or poorly insulated, they are likely contributing to higher energy bills. Credit For This Tip
Upgrade your heating and cooling systems
If you plan to buy a new heating or cooling system, ask your contractor about the latest technologies on the market. When buying a new heating or cooling system, look for the ENERGY STAR and EnergyGuide labels to compare efficiency and ensure quality.
Consider replacing your existing heating system if any of the following are true:
- Your heating system is more than 15 years old.
- The system is broken and repairs would cost more than half the cost of replacing it.
- The heating system is very inefficient.
Water heating is typically the second largest energy expense in your home. It typically accounts for about 13% of your energy usage. You can take steps to use less hot water and improve the efficiency of your existing water heating system.
- If your hot water tank is warm to the touch, consider insulating it to save 7%–16% annually in water heating costs. Follow manufacturer recommendations.
- Consider insulating your hot water pipes. Doing so can reduce heat loss, allow you lower the temperature setting, and save an additional 3%–4% per year on water heating.
- Set your water heater temperature to 120ºF, a temperature considered safe for most of the population.
- Install heat traps on the hot and cold pipes at the water heater to prevent heat loss. Most new water heaters have built-in heat traps.
- Drain a quart of water from your water tank every 3 months to remove sediment that impedes heat transfer and lowers the efficiency
of your heater. Follow the manufacturer’s directions.