Energy Saving Tips
Compact Fluorescent Lighting
Energy Star qualified compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) and compact fluorescent fixtures save approximately 70% over incandescent lamps. Many new CFL products have become available including 3-way lamps, dimmable lamps, flood lamps and lamps that fit ornamental fixtures such as vanity lights and chandeliers. Visit energystar.gov for more details.
Exit signs blend in but are always using energy. Customers that replace incandescent or fluorescent based exit signs with energy efficient light emitting diode (LED) powered exit signs can save up to 90% on exit sign usage.
Three common ways to control lighting automatically are by installing occupancy sensors, time clocks, and photocells. Leaving lights on in empty rooms is the most common way to waste energy. Occupancy sensors are very effective and relatively inexpensive. Time clocks can be set to turn on/off lights based on need. Photocells are used for night time lighting needs. They automatically turn on lights at dusk and turn off lights at dawn. Some innovative lighting systems include both timers and photocells. For example, a retail establishment may want their signage visible after hours but not into the middle of the night. The time clock sets the window of signage lighting hours and the photocell automatically adjusts for longer/shorter days.
Keeping your commercial refrigeration maintained can flow through to the bottom-line. Refrigeration compressors that are improperly charged run inefficiently and will waste energy. Also, door gaskets that have gaps or tears allow cold air to leak out and cause refrigeration equipment to run harder. Work with your refrigeration specialist to determine if your equipment is operating efficiently.
Many different commercial customers have refrigeration needs. They range from retail food/convenience stores to restaurant and lodging. Refrigeration in food stores accounts for over 50% of their energy usage. When replacing refrigeration equipment select Energy Star qualified models and save as much as 35%.
To find qualified refrigeration equipment visit energystar.gov.
Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
Proper maintenance of your HVAC system will help you cut the cost of keeping your customers comfortable. Before summer starts, make sure that your compressor is properly charged. Air conditioning compressors that are improperly charged run inefficiently and will waste energy. All year round make sure that your ventilation system is operating efficiently. Duct leakage and inoperative economizers can waste energy. Work with your HVAC specialist to determine if your equipment is operating efficiently.
New HVAC equipment
When replacing and upgrading your HVAC system, look for units that have a seasonal energy efficiency rating (SEER) of 14 or higher. Your ventilation load can be significantly reduced by installing a variable air volume system, when applicable. For more information on high efficiency commercial HVAC equipment visit the Consortium for Energy Efficiency.