Energy Saving Tips


How can I contribute to saving energy?

A researcher examines a heating element © Peter Winandy

Energy Saving Tips


Use the shading devices, where these are available: Ventilate heavily in the morning and let cool air into the rooms, then close the windows including the shutters or blinds.
Ideally, you should close the blinds that face east in the evening. Please note Building Management's general tips on using blinds.

  • Turn off ventilation and cooling in unused rooms. Check where their use can be avoided. Generally, it should only be used when staff is present, therefore, not used when unsupervised, during working hours.
  •  The following aspects can potentially be optimized:
    Can you possibly create a breeze by opening windows and doors? Please note, however, that certain individuals can experience neck aches and infections when exposed to a breeze for too long.
    Could you only run the fan at the lowest speed?

    Please note:
    Additionally cooling via (mobile) Klimaanlagen and fans is only permitted with devices purchased by the University.
    The room air in cooled rooms should not be colder than 25 °C. Always observe the workplace guidelines and safety regulations.
  • Check the following for any devices that must run during the day:
    Is it actually being used?
    Is is possible for it to only run at night?

  • Do the seals of the windows still work? They help not only to keep the warm air in the rooms in winter but also to keep the room temperature cool for longer in summer. If you see a need for a repair or replacement here, please inform the Disturbance Reporting Center via this form.

  • If you feel that the room temperature is too warm or too cold and the temperature is controlled centrally, please also inform the Disturbance Reporting Center using the form. Please note that depending on the building, adjustment possibilities may be limited.

    Please note:
    When outside temperatures are particularly high, the vast majority of systems can no longer fully meet the cooling requirements. However, this only occurs on a maximum of a few days in the middle of summer when outside temperatures are persistently high. On these (few) exceptional days, a certain decline in usual comfort levels is to be expected, as the additional costs for corresponding systems that would have to be used in tropical conditions/on very hot days would be disproportionate to the benefit (use so far only necessary on a few days).


  • To achieve a room temperature of 19 °C, position 2 on the thermostatic valves is sufficient. If you have any technical problems, please contact the . If lower temperatures are also acceptable to you, additional savings can be achieved. 
  • Are you going to be absent for several days? Turn the thermostatic valves back to the antifreeze position (*).
    ► Did you know that lowering the room temperature by 1 °C saves about 5 to 10 percent of heating energy?
  • Keep doors closed: A simple energy-saving tip that has a big effect. This is especially true for the door to the hallway, which may lead into the drafty entrance area.
  • Ventilating several times a day is better than having the windows permanently tilted. Closed windows ensure that warm heating air is not permanently escaping to the outside. As such, avoid permanent ventilation by leaving the windows tilted, especially when the outside temperature is cold. Ventilating regularly (approx. 5 minutes each time) is demonstrably much more energy-efficient.
  • Remember to turn down the heat when you are ventilating the room.
    ► Did you know that proper ventilation behavior can save up to 30 percent of heating energy?
  • Be careful not to obstruct radiators with furniture or other such items.


  • Only turn on the lights when necessary.
  • When you leave a room for an extended period of time, the lights should be turned off, both in your offices and in the hallways, besides stairwells and other rooms. This does not apply to necessary emergency or safety lighting (for example, for emergency or fire escape routes or for work areas that are particularly at risk).

Office equipment

  • Use the energy-saving mode of your electrical appliances.
    • Bye, Bye Standby: Switch off unused electrical appliances. Avoid stand-by operation. Check which electrical devices are in operation at your workplace:
    • Do I really need the second monitor?
    • Can I share the printer with other colleagues? Can decentralized servers be switched off when they are not in use?
    • Is the refrigerator needed or is it empty and can be (permanently) switched off?
      Use power strips with toggle switch (RWTH shop ► socket).
      Turn off the computer when not in use including monitors.
      The coffee machine does not need to be switched on all the time.
  • Boil water in quantities as needed: avoid filling the kettle completely if you only want to make a single cup of tea.
  • Only run the dishwasher when it is full.
  • Reduce the number of minutes after which the computer switches off the screen, etc. (Settings ► Mains operation & energy saving). This saves more energy than the screensaver mode.
  • Set bookmarks: Bookmark frequently visited pages, because every search engine query sends servers around the world into overdrive, and they consume electricity. Alternative search engines such as Ecosia have already committed themselves to climate protection by reforestation.
  • Avoid email attachments: Place files on the server or sciebo and send only the link to the document.
  • Disconnect power supply units and chargers from the mains after charging is complete.

Did you know that energy-conscious use of electrical appliances saves about 10 percent of electrical energy?

Get active

  • Potential for savings: Take a tour of laboratories, workshops and test halls with your colleagues and see how energy can be saved and where machine running times can be minimized.
  • Exercise: Take the stairs if this is possible for you. Moving around now and again is good for the circulation and saves a lot of electricity.

Working on Hot Days

According to the Technical Regulations for Workplaces (ASR) A3.5 "Room Temperature", suitable occupational safety measures must be taken when certain outdoor and room temperatures are reached. Please refer to the fact sheet issued by the Occupational Safety and Radiation Protection Unit.


Let's Spread the Word!


Please help us make simple energy-saving measures an even more present topic your in everyday work. Talk to your colleagues about them or use the following templates as (physical) reminders in your office.