Are you a small business owner struggling with the high cost of electricity? Are you motivated to lower your power bills but are uncertain which upgrades will bring a return on your investment? You’re not alone! As small business owners, we understand the critical importance of keeping costs under control. We also understand that most small business owners are pulled in many directions. Finding time to research appropriate energy saving upgrades can be challenging.
To simplify the process, we’re sharing our top 10 energy saving tips geared to small business owners. Not every suggestion will apply to your unique business but each strategy has the potential to lower your power bill immediately. While some upgrades require a modest investment, many cost nothing to implement and are accessible to all.
10 Energy Saving Tips
Invest in LED Bulbs
BC Hydro has determined that lighting is the largest energy drain for most small businesses. Thankfully, it’s one of the easiest energy saving upgrades to make! Did you know that LEDs use up to 80% LESS electricity than other types of bulbs? As the return on this investment is usually rapid, this upgrade earns first place on our list.
Use Less Light
Install dimmers to reduce light levels where appropriate and remove light bulbs from fixtures where less light could be tolerated. Every lumen saved contributes toward electricity savings!
Use Task Light
One LED task lamp uses much less electricity than a room full of overhead lights. Whenever possible use natural light instead of electric light.
Occupancy sensor switches are not costly but can net significant energy savings in break rooms, washrooms and storerooms.
As these signs are always on, you’ll see a noticeable reduction in energy use by upgrading these bulbs to LED.
Eliminate Standby Use
Electronics, appliances and other equipment all draw standby electricity when switched off. Always unplug these items overnight or when not in use as this can save you up to 10% on your energy bill!
Save on Electric Hot Water
Insulate your electric hot water tank and wrap exposed hot water pipes with foam insulation. This will allow you to turn the tank thermostat down, reducing electricity use.
Improve Summer Cooling Efficiency
Outdoor shades installed on south facing windows keeps heat out more effectively than indoor blinds. Close doors or turn A/C off in unoccupied rooms to minimize cooling loads. Turn off equipment not in use to reduce heat output. Keep HVAC equipment clean and serviced to maximize efficiency.
Improve Winter Insulation
Keep heat loss at bay by sealing cracks and gaps around exterior doors and windows. Close doors or turn off heating in unoccupied rooms, reducing heating requirements. Avoid over-ventilating as this removes heat you have paid to generate!
Update Your Electronics
Laptops use less electricity than desktop computers. If you must use desktops, upgrade your monitors to the latest in energy efficient technology.
Make it a habit to regularly review your company’s power use data on your energy provider’s website. Make note of which upgrades seem to have the largest impact on your electricity bill and focus on expanding those initiatives. Remember, small changes can lead to big savings. Aim to implement one strategy at a time and watch your power bills shrink while your profit margins rise!