Businesses – Do An Energy Audit

For most businesses their single most costly item is electric costs. There are ways to cut some of these costs. In some cases a business may have to spend some money to save. But there are ways to save on energy costs without spending a dime.

By doing an Energy Audit savings can be seen quickly by finding the energy wasting hot spots.

When looking at the electric costs, there are three major places where it’s used. Lighting, Office Equipment and Heating/Cooling. Each area needs to be looked at individually as well as in total.

Lighting:
• Reduce lighting by using task lights.

• Turn off the lights when they aren’t needed.

• Use timers and sensors for seldom-used areas such as storage closets, conference room and rest rooms.

Office Equipment:
• Shut off computers, copiers and other office equipment at nights and on weekends. If these items are always on just by turning them off during these times will reduce energy costs associated to Office Equipment by over 50%. While some computes, such as servers, need remain on at all times, the monitors do not.

• Use Power Management on computers, copiers and laser printers.

• If you still have the CRT style monitors replace them with LCD monitors. They save in desk space as well.

Heating and Cooling:
• Don’t open windows and doors.

• Lower the thermostat in the winter and raise them in the summer.

• Make certain that the thermostats are not blocked and can get a correct reading of the room air temperature.

When performing and energy audit, it’s important to walk around the office with an energy checklist to help identify areas where savings cane be found.

This walk around should involve the employees and done at different times during the day, during work hours as well as after-hours and on weekends. Since seasonal conditions may change it should be done on average once each season.

Once the checklist is finished items needs to be itemized and prioritize. Those that can be accomplished quick and with little expense can be done first. Those that have costly upfront costs need to be part of the annual budget review and made part of the business plan.

© 2007-2010 Steven G. Atkinson – All Rights Reserved

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