12 Ways Small Businesses Can Save Energy

By  //  July 15, 2022

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1. Ask For an Energy Audit

An energy audit provides an excellent way to identify areas where you might be wasting energy and advise on some of the best ways to save energy.

However, a full inspection of the business premises is needed to determine if there are insulation issues, air leaks, etc. Although you could hire an expert to help with the energy audit, most electricity companies offer the service free of charge such as Joscos commercial energy

2. Upgrade To More Energy-Efficient Equipment

Switching to more energy-efficient office appliances can help save lots of energy in the long run. That said, it would be advisable to only go for Energy-Star rated appliances when shopping for new ones. If you however have leased the equipment, ask your provider to provide you with energy-star-rated ones instead. You’ll be surprised how much energy some of this equipment will help you save in the long run. 

3. Reduce Energy Usage at Peak Hours

Electricity utility companies charge a premium rate for energy used during peak hours (between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.). Lowering your energy demand during these times can thus see your energy costs reduce dramatically. This is especially crucial for processing companies and businesses that don’t necessarily have to use energy-intensive tasks during such times. If possible, schedule usage of factory equipment and other heavy machines to the early morning hours or the evenings, when energy rates are considerably lower. 

4. Switch To Programmable/Smart Thermostats

Programmable thermostats come in handy in 9-5 office setups. The thermostat can be programmed to only heat/cool the workplace when people are around and turn the AC/Heater off at night when everyone is home. The thermostats can be programmed to accommodate the various working setups, especially if some employees work overtime into the night. While it might not seem like much, you’d be surprised how much energy you’ve been wasting leaving the heater/AC running for 24 hours. 

5. Switch Off All Lights in Unused Areas

It’s common for lights to stay ON all day, every day, even during weekends and nights. This isn’t just the offices but the bathrooms, break rooms, and conference rooms as well. Even with the most energy-efficient LED light fixtures in the workplace, leaving them on all the time beats the logic. That said, it would be best to turn the lights off, especially when one leaves the room. If possible, invest in sensor-controlled lights to turn them on when someone is within the vicinity. 

6. Switch To Energy -Efficient Bulbs

This is one of the easiest and simplest ways to save energy. Switching from incandescent light bulbs to either CFLs or LEDs can save you lots of money in lighting bills. LED bulbs use up to 80% less energy than other light bulbs. 

7. Make Use of The Natural Light

Does your office receive abundant sunlight? If yes, it would be best to open the windows and curtains to let the natural light in. This means you won’t have to use artificial light sources, saving you lots of money in the long run. You could also take advantage of passive solar radiation to heat the office as well. Although it might not seem like much, energy savings here and there often translate to lower energy bills. 

8. Run The Fans

Turn off the heater and run the fans instead. Fans help redistribute air in the office and can help keep the office cool, even on the hottest summer days. You could also run both the AC and the fans, but at a lower setting for optimal performance as well. 

9. Power Down All Office Equipment (Including Computers)

Leaving office equipment ON during the night only translates to enormous energy wastage. Having all office equipment (computers, printers, etc.) turned off whenever leaving for the say can save a lot of energy. If possible, have the computers programmed to switch off automatically at set times, say an hour or so after office hours. Other devices such as printers can be turned off from a central control unit, say the wall socket. 

10. Prevent ‘Phantom Energy’

Most modern devices and equipment only go to sleep mode when turned off. Although they are technically off, these devices will continue to draw power in their standby mode. Unplugging these devices can prevent such energy wastage, hence recommended for office setups. You can avoid phantom energy by connecting all computer peripherals (monitors, printers, scanners, etc.) to a power strip, which can be turned off at the flip of a single switch. 

11. Shield The Building

This option is most applicable when in a position to control the landscaping around the business. Planting trees strategically to shade the building is one way to do this. The trees will shield you from the intense summer heat and high winds. 

12. Engage Employees as Well

Putting all these measures in place isn’t enough if your employees aren’t involved. That said, it would be advisable to sensitize your employees on the importance of saving energy or have policies outlining how they should handle energy usage. Simply remind them of the importance of saving energy and offer perks to encourage them to achieve this.