When it comes to energy use, go off-peak. Try to avoid running your dishwasher or other appliances during on-peak hours to save energy and money. Kilowatt Way can tell you when off-peak, mid-peak and on-peak hours are (and remember, they change depending on the season).
A smart thermostat can help you control your heating and cooling by automatically learning your schedule and allowing you to remotely control your home temperature, an ideal feature when your schedule changes on the fly.
Gaming equipment, phone chargers, the microwave and other electronics can cost you if they're plugged in, even when you're not using them. In fact, the average microwave actually uses more energy to power its clock than to heat your food! A programmable power bar with auto on/off can help you save 10 per cent on your energy costs.
Lighting has a big impact on the look and feel of your place, and it can also affect your energy bill. Switching to LED lighting means using 75 to 90 per cent less energy than traditional incandescent lighting. And, if you really want to take things up a notch, think about smart lighting. Using your smartphone, you can turn your lights on and off, and even change their colours for a new look.
Making sure your condo or apartment is relatively dust-free can be tricky but it’s a great way to keep your place efficient and keep costs down.
Air purifiers are great for dust-ridden spaces but they can be a drain on energy. So, look for ENERGY STAR®-certified air purifiers, which use 40 per cent less energy than standard ones. Plus, vacuum or clean your vents, including the bathroom exhaust fan, to keep them running more efficiently.
Most condo and apartment buildings will replace ventilation filters annually but if yours doesn’t, make sure you do it yourself twice a year or more frequently if you have pets or allergies. A dirty filter is inefficient and can also cause your heating and cooling system to break down.
Looking for a new washer and dryer? Or maybe a new fridge? Make sure you go for ENERGY STAR®-certified appliances. For example, a dryer with that blue seal uses 20 per cent less energy than standard models. They also often have built-in sensors to detect when your clothes are dry, saving you energy but also valuable time. Installing a ceiling fan is also a great way to cut down on air conditioning costs in the summer. An ENERGY STAR®-certified fan uses 60 per cent less energy than a traditional one, so keep that seal in mind when shopping.