Energy may be one of the largest and most unpredictable expenses for any small business owner.
Finding quick, easy and sometimes innovative ways to reduce your energy consumption can help make your energy bills a little more predictable and a lot more controllable. So how do you get started? Below you'll find energy efficiency tips and ideas and available programs to help get you kick start your energy savings goals.
Kick Start Your Savings
Our no-cost energy audits can help you get the most out of your energy. United Power can conduct an on-site analysis of energy-related conditions in your facility and identify energy efficiency opportunities that show potential for improvement and savings. Our energy efficiency walk through is the first step toward creating an energy savings plan and identifying longterm strategic improvement opportunities.
To find out more about how our team can help you assess your energy needs, go to our Commercial Services page.
Employ strategies to stagger the use of energy-intensive equipment to keep your demand charges in check. If you're on our small commercial time-of-day rate, you can save on your energy costs by moving heavy equipment use to off-peak hours.
Our Energy Management Team can analyze your energy usage patterns and recommend the best way to save energy. For an analysis or energy audit, please contact our Energy Management Team at 303-637-1250.
Find additional resources and tips for lowering your demand here.
Sometimes your small business can benefit from some of the same energy efficiency steps you've taken in your own home.
Program Your Thermostat
Unlike your home, you know the hours your business will be operating, which make programming your thermostat a breeze. Set your thermostat to a more energy efficient level (higher in the summer and lower in the winter) during non-operating hours to save on energy usage.
Use Fans to Keep Employees Cool
Fans don't actually keep the air cool, but they do keep people cool, allowing you to keep the air conditioning units a few degrees higher. This may be particularly useful for businesses operating in warehouses or other large buildings.
Change Your Filters
Changing your air filters eases the burden on your heating and cooling units. With clean filters, they won't have to work as hard or as long, which is more energy efficient.
Energy Efficient Lighting
Make the switch to LED lighting in your business. Depending on the size of your business, this could be a substantial investment, but will result in more longterm savings due to an LED's low energy usage and long life. Remember to turn lights off when not in use to save extra on your energy bill, especially if you're not using LEDs currently.
Take Advantage of the Sun
No form of lighting is more energy efficient than the sun. If your business has plenty of natural light, open the windows rather than turning on lights. In the winter, this has the added benefit of bringing in natural warmth, which can decrease reliability on your heating system.
Kill the Phantom Loads
Phantom loads happen when devices that appear to not be in use continue to run in sleep or standby modes. In residential homes, these loads continues to climb, nearing 10% of overall energy use, due in large part to the nature of electronic and chargeable devices. Chargers plugged into wall outlets but not a device can still draw small amounts of electricity over time. Businesses may also be susceptible to these phantom loads, with the most prominent example being computers. Remember to turn off (or unplug, where appropriate) any unused devices in your workspace.
For restaurants, small grocery stores or other businesses that operate refrigeration equipment, consider consolidating into single refrigeration units when possible. Using less refrigeration is sure to save you on energy bills.
Finally, Engage Your Employees
It's difficult to maintain energy efficient practices without the help of your employees. Educate them on the ways you're trying to save energy at your business and get them on board. It'll go a long way in seeing your energy efficiency efforts pay off.
United Power is proud to provide our members with rebates that encourage them to use energy responsibly and save on energy bills. We offer a variety of commercial and industrial rebates, but our business owners are also able to take advantage of our member rebates.