Energy audits don’t have to be complex, expensive or time-consuming. On the contrary, business owners can conduct an effective, free energy audit of their business’s energy usage by simply walking around the building.
An energy audit of a business is an analysis of the cost and efficiency of energy usage within a company. An energy audit looks for ways a business can minimize energy waste and make energy improvements.
In addition to savings on energy bills, lowering energy consumption can help reduce a business’s carbon footprint giving it a more environmentally responsible image in the industry and the community.
We have put together some handy tips and hints which may help you reduce energy usage in your business.
Keep it cool: Depending on your industry, businesses can spend 85% of their energy budget on refrigeration. This could possibly be reduced by ensuring seals are tight on units to ensure the cool air stays in. Where possible Minimise the time your staff spend in, or passing through, cool areas - improving the layout of your facilities could help too.
Lighting it up: Replacing standard lights with LEDs will not only reduce energy usage by 15 to 60 per cent, but will also improve employee safety because of increased illumination. LED lighting upgrades have resulted in a reduction in a site's 'maximum demand' charge for many businesses. Data centres, for example, can use 35 to 50 times more energy than similar sized offices, reduce the lighting in these spaces when safe to do so and install sensor lighting.
- Is it hot in here?: Regular maintenance is the simplest way to help ensure heating and cooling systems are operating efficiently, particularly ensuring that heating and cooling are not operating at the same time, and that operational controls are set to turn the system off when not needed. Many of these measures offer payback periods of less than two years. And ensure temperatures are not set too high for heating and too low for cooling. Each 1°C increase of the thermostat cooling setting will save about 10 per cent on your energy usage.
Under pressure: Most refrigeration systems have a fixed head-pressure, which is often set higher than necessary causing systems to operate inefficiently and wasting money. The good news is that businesses can typically reduce energy use by 2% to 10% by adjusting head pressure, with investments that typically offer a payback period of just 3–5 years.
On display: Display case and refrigerator lighting. Upgrading display case and refrigerator lighting to LEDs can significantly cut electricity use and result in considerable savings. LEDs in refrigerators also reduce cooling requirements and – as LEDs do not generate heat in the way that halogen, incandescent or fluorescent lights do – can reduce or eliminate condensation.
And finally, a tip which we highly recommend:
6. Switch Off Those Devices Over Night: Carry out an energy audit when your staff goes home for the evening. This way you will be able to see what devices and appliances have been left on.
If computers are left on, for example, break your staff’s ‘standby’ habit. Insist your employees no longer keep PCs and tablets on standby when they leave for the day. Instead, make it company policy to turn off all devices.
Would you like to know more about how we can help you put your energy in the right place?