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Energy saving tips for your home

There's no need to become an energy vigilantly like Gordon to make a difference.

There are heaps of ways to save on energy around your business. Here are some tips that can help both save energy as well as your bottom line.

Appliances

Replace and recycle your old refrigerator in the staff kitchen and purchase an energy-efficient model. Units more than 10 years old have been shown to use two to three times more electricity than a new energy rated model. If not, at least defrost older refrigerators and freezers before ice build up becomes 10mm thick.

Wash only full loads in the staff kitchen dishwasher and use the shortest cycle that will get your dishes done.

Set your hot water heater thermostat at 60 degrees or normal in the staff kitchen and bathroom facilities if possible.

Fix defective plumbing or dripping taps in staff bathrooms. Did you know a single dripping hot water tap wastes over 1000 litres of water a month? That not only increases water bills, but also increases the gas or electric bill for heating the water.

Make sure you turn off computers and any other equipment that does not need to be on overnight. It may not seem like much turning off your computer, but when multiplied by many employees it all adds up.

Heating and Cooling

When you're considering what colour to paint your office and what window coverings to use, consider how much light can be gained by using light colours for walls and window coverings which allow the maximum possible light penetration throughout the day.

Seal windows, doors and anywhere air leaks in or out by add weather strips around windows and doors where possible.

Set the air-conditioner thermostat at 24 degrees or higher, in summer and at 21 degrees or lower in winter.

If your old air conditioner is on its way out replace it with a split system inverter unit with as many stars in its energy-efficiency rating as possible.

Clean or replace heater and air-conditioner filters regularly, following manufacturer's instructions.

Install shades, awnings or sunscreens on windows facing north and/or west to block the hot summer sun. In winter, open shades on sunny days to help warm rooms.

Lighting

Consider replacing incandescent bulbs in signage with LED's as well. Not only can this be applied to promotional signage, but also to safety signs such as for emergency exits. LED's use a fraction of the energy used by an incandescent bulb and will last much longer.

During business operating hours, think about how bright your business needs to be. Would a skylight or dimming switch reduce your electricity consumption, yet still keep your business adequately lit? Where at all possible use natural light to your advantage, not only will it save money, your employees will appreciate it.

Outdoor lighting can also be limited during daylight hours using timers or by ensuring employee turns the switch on and off when required.

Also, consider installing movement sensors for conference rooms and offices. This is an inexpensive and effective way to reduce electricity consumption when nobody is using an empty space.

Ensuring your lights are free of dust and build ups will not only ensure they remain bright, but will also increase their longevity through reduced heat.

After hours, instead of leaving security lighting on all night, consider using movement or infrared sensors. In addition to reducing electricity, it will alert people when there is something or someone around your buildings.

Make sure the last person to leave, turns the lights off and any other equipment that does not need to be on overnight. It may not seem like much for one person to turn a light off, but when multiplied by many employees over the course of a year the costs adds up!

Signs advertising your business or in-store promotions are an effective tool, however is it necessary to leave their lights on 24/7? In many cases a timer can turn signs off during daylight hours and in the wee hours of the morning when there is minimal traffic viewing your signs.

We are always looking at ways to save energy, so if you have any energy saving tips for business you'd like to share please pass them on our blog.