By Lorren Thomas, Director of Communications, EnergyBot
Everyone likes to save a few bucks, whether it’s using a coupon code at checkout or catching an annual sale at your favorite retailer.
When it comes to your small business, your energy bills are no different. Did you know that something as simple as the flicking of a switch can add up to big savings at the end of the year? Here are 6 easy tips for saving energy, courtesy of the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Energy Star Program, a joint venture of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy.
- Flip the Switch.
We’ve heard the phrase “turn off the light behind you” as kids. And this still rings true today. Turn off lights in unoccupied areas and consider disconnecting lighting in unused portions of your business or areas that benefit from natural lighting. Use of automatic timers also helps avoid the unnecessary hassle of remembering to flip the switch.
- Use “Smart” Lighting.
Make the switch from incandescent bulbs to more energy-efficient options, like compact fluorescents or LEDs. The upfront cost of these bulbs is an investment due to their longevity and reduced energy usage. Consumer Reports estimates that an LED bulb typically lasts five time as long as its equivalent incandescent and uses about a sixth of the power.
- Turn Down Your Water Heater.
Many people don’t realize that you can turn down your water heater. Turning it down to the lowest usable temperature is an easy adjustment to make. There are employee safety benefits to making this adjustment; no one needs scalding water to wash their hands!
- Turn Off Unused or Unneeded Equipment.
This seems obvious, but turn off office equipment and appliances you’re not using, and make sure to buy Energy Star-rated equipment to keep consumption at a minimum.
- Clean Your HVAC Systems.
Make sure your facility’s HVAC systems get a thorough cleaning once a year. This will not only save your sinuses, but it will also keep your system operating at peak efficiency. Use a dynamic control to keep temperatures comfortable during work hours, and then adjust as necessary when the building is unoccupied.
- Work with What You Know.
If you have a physical location, playing to that location’s advantages can make all the difference. For example, if one side of your building gets brilliant afternoon sun from the windows, forcing you to crank up the air conditioner, keep the shades drawn. If your winters are particularly brutal, make sure you’ve got the best insulation you can afford.
Going into fall and winter, now is a great time to put these 6 tips into action and start cutting costs on your monthly electricity bill. Energy Star estimates that in 2016, Americans saved $30 billion in energy costs. Make sure your business is getting its share of the savings this year.
Along with these 6 easy savings tips, you can also check out EnergyBot to search, compare, and select the best energy plan for your business.
Disclaimer: The above commentary entails the views of the author and not necessarily the views of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.