22 Quick and Easy Energy Efficiency Tips for Small Businesses

By Stephanie, July 20, 2012, Energy Efficiency, News, Small Biz

Energy efficiency tips for small business ownersLearning how to conserve energy and save money is part and parcel of running a successful small business. Whether you work at home or within an office or shop setting, reducing energy consumption can help you save hard earned cash that can be reinvested to further benefit yo    mur enterprise. Becoming energy efficient with your small business is not difficult, but it does require work and a few tips and tricks to accomplish your objectives. You may also need to change long term personal and/or work habits to get the results you desire. The following are some simple yet important energy saving tips that can put you on the road to being more professional and energy conserving on a small business level.

1. Monitor your energy usage to get a better idea of how you consume energy. Repair or replace dysfunctional office equipment that could be consuming energy due to inefficient operation.

2. Invest in energy efficient equipment to meet your small business needs. This includes energy efficient computers, copy machines, printers, scanners, shredders and other office equipment. If you work from home, use only energy efficient household appliances to keep your electricity bills down.

3. Turn off all office equipment or ensure it is automatically programmed for sleep mode when not in use. When possible, unplug unused appliances and equipment during the night or over the weekends to save on electricity.

4. Heating and cooling needs constitutes a substantial expense for small businesses. You can lower this expense by ensuring your heating and cooling systems are operating at top capacity. Take advantage of annual maintenance contracts to get regular system tune-ups for optimum performance.

5. Change or clean HVAC filters monthly so they provide better service. Dirty filters cause the systems to work harder at greater financial expense.

6. Upgrade the thermostat on your HVAC system to an automatic, programmable model for higher energy efficiency. Automatic thermostats give you greater control to set your heating or cooling systems to meet your specific needs.

7. Strive to maintain your AC/heater temperatures at reasonable and consistent levels during both the summer and winter seasons to conserve energy. Constant changes in temperature settings will waste energy and cost you more long term.

8. When using central air or heating systems, close doors and/or vents to rooms that are unoccupied to avoid wasting energy.

9. Maintain a cooler work environment during the summer by blocking the sun from entering your windows through the use of solar films or screens, awnings, window shades, blinds, etc. Drawing curtains or shades will also maintain your environment cooler when using the AC.

10. Maintain a warmer work environment during winter by letting the sun into your home or office during the day. Close blinds or drapes in the evening so that the heat stays inside.

11. The use of ceiling or standup fans during the summer can help cut your energy bills. Fans circulate air which helps to relieve the discomfort of hot temperatures and high humidity levels.

12. Lower heating bills during the winter by caulking or applying weather stripping to windows and doors to eliminate drafts. The less drafty your environment, the less heating you require, enabling you to conserve on energy bills.

13. Change the incandescent light bulbs in your business to energy efficient compact florescent lamps. Compact florescent lamps cost approximately 75% less to use than incandescent bulbs, last much longer and provide ample lighting to meet your needs.

14. Take advantage of bright daylight whenever you can to meet your lighting needs. During peak daylight hours, turn off inside lights or adjust to lower levels to save energy.

15. Turn off all security and safety lights at the beginning of the day to conserve electricity.

16. Switch from overhead lighting to task lighting wherever possible. Also, only utilize light sources when there is a need. Turn off lights as you leave a room and ensure all lights are extinguished before you leave the office at the end of the working day.

17. Consider placing occupancy sensors in corridors, meeting rooms, bathrooms, storage facilities or other appropriate locations for automatic light control when people enter and exit these areas. Occupancy sensors help you to avoid wasting electricity when no one is around. Bathroom fans can also be rewired to function only when the lights come on.

18. Make allowances for dress codes during hot summer months. By allowing your workers to dress more casually in hot weather rather than requiring the use of formal suit and tie, you may be able to lower air conditioning costs.

19. Switch from using desktop model computers to laptops, when possible, as laptops utilize as much as 90% less energy. Ink jet printers are also much more energy efficient than their laser printer counterparts.

20. Conserve on water by ensuring all leaks in kitchen and bathroom areas are promptly repaired. If needed, install water saving fixtures in bathroom or kitchen settings to further conserve on this commodity.

21. Conserve energy and increase safety by setting your hot water temperature no higher than 120 degrees for bathrooms or kitchen areas.

22. If you utilize a vehicle for business purposes, conserve on fuel consumption by investing in a fuel efficiency vehicle to meet your small business needs.

This content is part of Bounce Energy and Blinds.com‘s Sizzlin Summer Campaign. Check out our previous posts for tips on how you can save on your energy bill by fixing your windows, and 35 energy efficient tips for you and your kids.

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