Going Green: Smart Ways Your Business Can Save Energy

If you run a business, a large chunk of your monthly bills probably goes toward energy costs. It's important to get those costs as low as possible so you can run your business efficiently. If you need to lower your energy bills, here are some tips for lowering your energy costs for your business.

Get an Energy Audit

An energy audit is a great way to find out how much energy your business is consuming. Some utility companies even offer free audits. All you have to do is call and ask if they can do a free audit for you. Even if they don't offer free ones, the cost will be low enough to be worth all the money you'll save from the knowledge you gain. The audit will determine how energy efficient your equipment is, and it will also show you where you lose heat throughout your building, so you can fix it and keep the heated or air conditioned air inside, where it belongs.

Keep Computers Off

One big mistake that companies make is leaving computers on when they leave for the day. Employees turn off their monitors and then they go home. If even one computer is on, it's using unnecessary energy all night. If you have 10, 20, or a few hundred computers, imagine how much energy they are consuming during the hours your business is closed. Make sure employees are instructed to turn off computers or use the hibernation feature. If everyone doesn't have enough time to turn their computers on every morning, the hibernation feature allows them to sit all night without consuming much energy, and they only take a second to boot up after you wake it up.

To manage your hibernation settings, press Windows + X. Once you're in the power menu, press Power Options, click change plan settings and then scroll down to the sleep section. You'll see an option that says, hibernation after and your employees can choose the amount of time that should elapse before hibernation occurs. You can send people out to change this on everyone's computer to the amount of time you deem appropriate or send out a memo to your employees with instructions to change it themselves.

Add Insulation

It's mandatory for a building to be insulated. However, building codes require a specific minimum amount of insulation, which is far below the recommended amount for proper energy efficiency. Due to cost restraints, many buildings only have the minimum amount of insulation required. If you have purchased an older building, a lot of the insulation could have settled, making the little insulation it does have much less effective. You can add insulation to a building at any time. Spray foam insulation tends to be the most simple because you can spray it in with a minimal incision done in the wall. If you do the energy audit, the insulation is something that they will check.

Reduce Paper

Printing paper is one of the most wasteful things that businesses do. The average office worker uses about 10,000 sheets of paper every year, which is an equivalent of 4 million tons of copy paper used in the US, annually. In the digital age, there is no reason to use that much paper. Converting as much as possible to the computer will keep your business from wasting paper and the energy it takes to print it. Ask customers to fill out their information online, or have employees fill information out for them when they come into the business. Give customers a discount on their bill each month for opting to have paperless billing and only print papers when it is absolutely necessary.

Most businesses use much more energy than they actually need to use. Make sure you get an energy audit to see where you can save money around the building. Also, add insulation, save paper, and make sure electronics are off after closing time. For more information on making your business's heating system more efficient, contact a company like Mercury Tec.