Top Energy Conservation Tips for Businesses

Summer is just around the corner, and you know what follows next—electricity rates will be on the rise as well. Any business would want to cut back on unnecessary energy use to keep their hard-earned money in the bank and reduce their operating expenses.

While hiring an energy consulting firm can help a business in identifying areas where electricity consumption can be minimized, the following are some general tips that can come in handy for businesses wanting to lower utility costs:

•Improve efficiency of cooling and ventilation systems

During the hot months, cooling and ventilation systems often are the major contributors to the sudden increase in electricity consumption of any business. To avoid unnecessary cooling costs, use a programmable thermostat that can facilitate adjustment and regulation of the temperature levels. The use of a locking cover over the thermostat will also be helpful as employees won’t be able to change temperature settings.

Make it a habit to close the window blinds so that the rooms will be shaded from direct sunlight. Keep exterior and freight doors closed as much as possible. Install window film and solar screen in windows facing the east and west.
Recommend installation of ceiling fans, as these don’t consume a lot of electricity and can make it at least four degrees cooler during the hot months.

•Choose the right light for the right task

You’d be surprised to learn that lighting can be reduced at many offices, stores and factories without affecting employee productivity. Try to switch off as many unnecessary lights as possible. Instead of overhead lighting, why not consider task
lighting. It can provide your business savings of as much as 15 percent on your electricity bills.
Replace old fluorescent lights with LED or other energy efficient fixtures. Compact fluorescent light is also a good choice, using 75 percent less electricity than incandescent bulb but producing the same amount of light.

Moreover, it lasts longer (around 10,000 hours) compared to the incandescent light (around 1,000 hours on the average).

To increase the output of light, clean bulbs, fixtures, lamps, lenses and reflective surface regularly. Removing dust and dirt can make these lighting fixtures produce better illumination.

•Computers and other office equipment

A business can save up to $100 a year for every computer that is turned off when not in use. As such, install in your employees the habit of switching off computers, printers, and other office equipment when not in use, particularly overnight and weekends.

The use of ‘smart’ power trips can be useful as well, as these can turn off computer and other office equipment after sensing the presence or absence of office workers.

When buying new office equipment, purchase only those that have the Energy Star logo. And purchase a proper sized copier suited for your business needs.

Following these steps can really help save on expenses. A business doesn’t necessarily need to hire an energy consulting firm to be able to cut down on electricity costs, although it is the best option to save the most money possible.

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