Q. I rent an apartment with electric heat. What are the best ways to save on heating this winter?
A. It’s smart of you to focus on your heating, because it likely accounts for the biggest part of your electric bill. Here are four easy ways you can save:
Watch your thermostat
A good energy-efficient setting is 68 degrees when you’re home. Lower it to 60 at night or when you’re away. Each degree you lower your thermostat saves about 2 percent on your bill.
Stay in the zone
If you have electric zonal heat, such as baseboard or wall heaters, lower or turn off heat in unused rooms and close the door (but keep an eye out for mold).
Keep it clean and clear
If you have baseboard or other heaters, vacuum or dust the units regularly to help them run as efficiently as possible. Also, don’t block the flow of heat with furniture or drapes.
Insulate your windows with heavy drapes — especially thermal-backed styles — or cellular “honeycomb” shades to prevent heat loss and block drafts. Your home will feel warmer, and you’ll be less tempted to raise the thermostat. Be sure to close window coverings at night when temperatures drop.
Try these other no-cost and low-cost tips.