8 Ways to Make Your Office More Energy Efficient
One of the major costs faced by many small businesses is energy. When you make your office more energy efficient, you can end up seeing returns on your investment in the form of electrical and gas savings. In this blog post, we will talk about some of the things that business owners can do to make their office more energy efficient and save money.
Use a Programmable thermostat
One of the largest contributors to energy usage in an office is the heating and cooling of the office. By utilizing a programmable thermostat, you can effectively save money and energy by only heating and cooling the building to comfortable temperatures during working hours. Almost all thermometers have a built in programmable function and an override button in case someone stays late at the office or comes in early. Just make sure not to set the temperature too high or too low when there is no one in the office as some electronics can only be stored within a certain temperature range.
Switch to Laptops
Most desktop computers use between 65 to 250 watts while laptops normally use between 15 and 60 watts. Laptops are more efficient where power is concerned and can easily be hooked up to an external keyboard, mouse, or even another monitor for comfort and efficiency.
Certain appliances that you may have at your office do not need to be running when no one is at the office. Water coolers with hot water spigots, and coffee machines that keep water hot are a few examples of appliances that do not need to run when there is no one at the office. To save money on energy costs for these appliances, consider investing in timers to automatically shut off these appliances at the end of the business day and automatically turn them on at the start of the next business day.
Use Smaller, newer refrigerators
Smaller refrigerators use less energy compared to larger refrigerators. Newer refrigerators are also more efficient. Especially those with an Energy Star label. Depending on the size of your office, you could get away with saving some money by using a smaller refrigerator or upgrading to a newer energy star model. Energy Star has a great calculator on their website that you could use to see how much money you could save by changing your fridge.
Upgrade your Lighting
Energy efficient lighting has never been more available than it is now. By switching from traditional incandescent bulbs to energy efficient light bulbs and fixtures, you could save between 25-80% on energy used for lighting. Energy efficient lighting can also reduce your maintenance costs as they typically last much longer. According to energy.gov, a traditional incandescent bulb lasts 1000 hours, a comparable CFL lasts 10,000 hours, and a comparable LED lasts 25,000 hours. If you normally need to hire someone to change your bulbs, such as a cherry picker operator, this means that upgrading your lights could save you 10 – 25 maintenance bills by upgrading your lighting. While the cost of these bulbs is typically higher upfront, they require less maintenance and are cheaper to run than your normal incandescent.
Consolidate your printers
Using fewer printers means using less energy. Many printers today can connect to multiple computers and allow for everyone in the office to print off of one or two main printers. Generally, one printer can work for every 10 employees. Depending on how much printing is used every day, you may be to use even fewer printers. Consolidating printers not only saves energy but can save on maintenance, hardware costs, and consumables like toner, ink, and paper.
Activate sleep settings
Printers, computer, monitors, and other office equipment usually come with built in sleep settings. Sleep mode on devices places them into a low power mode after a certain time of inactivity. Many devices do this automatically, but others you will have to enable. All you have to do is check the manual that came with your printer, computer, or monitor, or contact your electronics supplier to determine how to activate or change the sleep mode settings across all of your devices. By doing this, you could potentially save $50 per computer per year.
Shop around for energy
Thanks to energy deregulation, you can have more say in the price you are charged for the supply of your electricity and natural gas. Utility companies cannot profit from the supply of energy to you and only profit from the delivery costs that they charge. By shopping around for an alternative energy supplier, you may be able to save money on your electric and natural gas bill.