Saving energy is not just good for the environment – it is also good for your bottom line. Every bit of power that you can save can reduce your monthly utility expenses while at the same time benefiting the environment. Here are some ways that you can cut energy costs for your business:
- Shut off lights and electronic devices when they are not being used. Although it may seem obvious, one of the easiest ways to save energy is by making sure that the lights are turned off when no one is in the room. Likewise, shutting down computers at the end of the day and making sure no electronic devices are left on after hours can make a big difference in the amount of energy that your business uses. The only time that you shouldn’t turn off a light when you leave the room is if you have compact fluorescent light bulbs and you plan on being gone for fewer than 15 minutes. Turning a CFL bulb on and off too many times can shorten its lifespan.
- Analyze your energy usage. Before you can start cutting back on the energy that you use, you need to know exactly how much you are using. Gather together any relevant paperwork and spend some time crunching the numbers. There are a lot of software programs out there – many of which are free – that can help you analyze your company’s energy usage. These programs can often help you discover areas where you can save. You may even be able to contact your local energy company to have them send a specialist to your business to conduct an energy audit. This can help you find even more energy-saving opportunities. If you understand how energy companies work you’ll be more inclined to follow this advice.
- Use power strips. A lot of times, devices will continue to draw energy even after they are shut off. You can prevent this by plugging them into power strips rather than directly into the wall. Instead of just shutting off the device, turn off the power strip. This will keep any electricity from flowing into the device.
- Switch out your light bulbs. One easy way to save is by replacing any incandescent or halogen bulbs with compact fluorescent or LED bulbs. These two types of light bulbs use far less energy. Although they are slightly more expensive than other types of bulbs, they last a lot longer. Additionally, they can help you save a lot of money on your energy bills.
- Invest in a programmable thermostat. Set the temperature according to your company’s schedule. For instance, after hours, you may be able to program the thermostat to automatically turn the heat down when no one is in the building. You should also look into using curtains or blinds to control the amount of sunlight entering your building. This can allow you to regulate the temperature simply by blocking out the sun or allowing it in.
- Choose energy-efficient equipment and appliances. Old, outdated equipment or appliances may be using more power than necessary. Today’s models are far more energy-efficient. Upgrading your equipment or appliances could wind up helping you save a lot of money on power. You may also want to have your existing equipment inspected to make sure that it is operating at peak efficiency.