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Last updated: 12/15/17

Renew Boston

Helping Boston residents save energy and money at home.

Renew Boston is the go-to program for residents interested in saving energy, money, and improving home comfort.  More than 40,000 Bostonians have signed up for a home energy visit, and you can too. Connect with us to lower your utility bills and do your part to reduce carbon emissions citywide.

Learn more about the history and goals of Renew Boston.

Have questions? Contact us:

1 City Hall Square, Room 709, Boston, MA 02201-2031, United States
Monday - Friday, 9 am - 5 pm
Watch: What happens in a Home Energy visit
Request a workshop
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Want us come to your neighborhood? Email greenovate@boston.gov.
Contact us for a workshop

Energy Saving Tips

Energy Tips
  • Unplug electronics when not in use, or use a smart power strip to eliminate any "standby" power that devices consume.
  • Look for ENERGY STAR label when shopping for electronics and appliances. 
  • Use a watt-meter to determine how much energy your devices are using. 
  • Do not line oven racks with foil. It blocks heat flow. 
  • Use a kettle rather than a pot to boil water. If using a pot, keep the lid on. 
  • Allow frozen foods to thaw completely before cooking.
  • Use the air-drying option instead of heat drying. You can also turn off the drying cycle, open the dishwasher, and let the contents air dry. 
  • When buying a dishwasher, receive a home energy audit through Mass Save to be eligible for rebates for ENERGY STAR models. 
  • Scrape dishes instead of rinsing them prior to loading. Use a sink or pot filled with cold water, rather than hot running water. 
  • Be sure that the dishwasher is full, but not overloaded. 
  • Keep all drains and filters clean. 
  • Set your thermostat to 68°F when you are home, and 56°F when you leave. Each degree above 68°F can use 3% more energy!
  • Install clock thermostats to automatically control heating and cooling.
  • Have your heating equipment checked by a service professional.
  • Clean or replace furnace filters periodically and have your furnace burner checked and cleaned annually. 
  • Dust or vacuum radiator surfaces and vents frequently and keep them unobstructed.
  • Close fireplace dampers when not in use to keep heated or cooled air from escaping the chimney.
  • Keep insulated drapes or shades closed in summer and open on sunny winter days. Close curtains or drapes on winter nights to reduce heat loss. 
  • If you use electric heat, consider replacing it with a high-efficiency, ductless heat pump system. The system can cut electricity use by as much as 50%. 
  • Check for drafts around windows and doors. Caulk and weather-strip where necessary. 
  • Install wall-outlet and switch-plate gaskets to reduce the flow of cold air. 
  • Install storm windows, or purchase window insulator kits to reduce drafts.
  • Install storm doors to reduce heat transfer to the outside.
  • Check your home's insulation, and sign up for an energy audit to have a professional inspect your walls, attic, and basement. 
  • Insulate hot water pipes. 
  • Replace all of your incandescent bulbs with LED ones. Sign up for a home energy visit to get them for no cost. 
  • Turn off lights whenever you leave a room or do not need them. 
  • When you are away from home, use a timer to turn lights on and off automatically.
  • Use task lighting over desks, tables, and workbenches. 
  • Take advantage of natural light whenever possible. 
  • Use LEDs in holiday lighting displays. They use 90% less power than incandescent bulbs. 
  • Keep your refrigerator temperature setting around 38°-40°F, and the freezer around 5°F. 
  • Leave several inches of space behind and on the sides of the your refrigerator so air can circulate around the unit. 
  • Check for air leaks by shutting a piece of paper in the refrigerator door. If you can remove the paper without resistance, cold air may be escaping. 
  • Clean the condenser coils located underneath or in the back of your refrigerator or freezer periodically. 
  • Let hot foods cool before placing them in the refrigerator, except for cooked meat.
  • Do not open the refrigerator door unnecessarily, or keep it open for prolonged periods.
  • For older refrigerators, remove frost periodically. 
  • Wash clothes in cold or warm water rather than hot, and rinse in cold water. 
  • Fill your washer and dryer to capacity whenever possible. Wash smaller loads using lower water levels. 
  • Hang your clothes to dry whenever possible. 
  • Clean your dryer's lint filter after each load, and clean the outside vent regularly. 
  • If you need to replace your washer, sign up for an energy audit. You can qualify for Mass Save rebates on ENERGY STAR models.
  • Set your hot water heater at 120°F rather than 140°F. 
  • Replace washers on leaky faucets. Dripping can add up to wasted gallons each month.
  • Turn off the tap when you shave or brush your teeth. 
  • Install low-flow showerheads and sink aerators. Sign up for an energy audit to receive them for no cost!