When you live in an apartment block, it’s easy to think that the energy provider everyone uses is probably the only option. You are wrong. It’s important to compare energy providers to ensure you get the best price and service.
Apartment living also doesn’t mean your impact on the environment is minimal. The collective carbon footprint impacts the environment, even if you are just one person.
Here are some simple changes that will help keep your energy use down, even when you are not in a house.
Ways to make apartment living greener!
1. Hang a door sweep on all your doors
Door sweeps may not seem like a valuable apartment accessory, but trust us, they could really impact indoor temperatures and can easily be installed on any door. They’re easy to install and inexpensive!
This is especially important if you have a sliding glass door in your apartment. You want to keep the heat in during the winter and keep that cold air out during the summer.
Door sweeps are readily available at your local hardware store or home improvement store, so you’ll have no trouble finding them.
2. Switch to LED lightbulbs
Here’s a quick fact you may not know: LEDs use only 20 percent of the energy of incandescent bulbs, and they last 10 times longer.
This makes them a great choice for your apartment block because you’ll save money on both your electric bill and replacement bulbs.
But this solution has two catches:
- First, the initial outlay is more than it would be for regular lightbulbs.
- Second, LED lights can cause flicker issues with some TVs and computers (if this happens to you on an LED TV or computer monitor in your home, try turning the brightness down).
The good news is that prices are coming down all the time. Also, keep in mind that CFLs aren’t exactly environmentally friendly—they contain mercury!
3. Only use the washing machine when it’s full
You can save energy and money by using the washing machine only when it’s full. Your clothes will last longer, and you won’t have to use as much detergent.
You can also hang wet clothes outside to dry or put them in a basket and spin them (it’s like a giant clothes dryer). The spinning helps get rid of moisture that would otherwise be absorbed by the fabric.
If you do use your dryer, make sure that it has an automatic timer so that it shuts off at night—that way, there won’t be any waste from leaving it running while no one’s home.
Don’t use the dryer if you can avoid it. If your clothes are wet, hang them up to dry instead of drying them with a machine (they’ll last longer anyway).
4. Ditch daily dishwasher use
Dishwashers are another big energy user.
When you use only a few dishes, running a full cycle is not worth your time or money. Only run the dishwasher when it’s totally full, and make sure to select the energy-efficient option (often called “eco” or “economy”).
Keep an eye on how much water you’re using while washing dishes by filling and draining a measuring cup periodically.
You can also fill up a bucket with hot water, then use that as your rinse agent instead of using cold water directly from the faucet. It’ll save both energy and money!
5. Energy-efficient appliances
When it comes to choosing appliances, you might be surprised to find that new appliances are more energy-efficient than older ones. Newer appliances are often more reliable and durable as well.
They’re also easier to use, which can make your life easier. Plus, the latest models tend to look nicer and add a bit of style to your kitchen or laundry room!
6. Temperature test
The temperature sensor in your fridge and freezer is there to help them run more efficiently.
The correct temperature for both of these appliances means that they will use less energy and, in turn, are more environmentally friendly. If the temperature is too low or too high, it can quickly spoil food or even be damaged by frost damage.
If you’re unsure about what the correct temperature should be for your unit, check the manual or speak with a technician who specialises in refrigeration units for advice on how best to maintain their efficiency levels.
7. Take advantage of the sun
You can take advantage of the sun by opening shades on windows that face the sun during winter, helping warm up your apartment.
Keep curtains closed in summer and keep the blinds open during the day, but close them at night. Open shades on west-facing windows in summer, keeping east-facing ones closed to keep out heat.
8. Switch off
- Turn off the lights when you leave the room.
- Turn off electronics when not in use.
Apartment living is a great lock-up-and-go lifestyle. However making small changes when you lock up and go means big differences to your monthly utility bills.
Explore the options available to you by speaking to the building manager, and find the best energy supplier for your apartment needs.