Where to Begin? Prioritize Energy Saving Projects for your Business
In most commercial establishments, energy costs can account for 40 percent or more of a company’s monthly expenses. Any reductions in these expenditures can represent significant cash savings. Implementing energy saving projects in your business can start with small changes that provide immediate results while preparing for larger changes later.
1. Reduce Heating and Cooling Requirements
Every building has a heating and cooling load. The load is the amount of heating or cooling that is required to keep the interior spaces of the building at the temperature preferred by the occupants. Reduce the load with energy saving projects to slash the amount of energy and money expended for indoor comfort.
Seal energy leaks: Locate areas of conditioned air and energy loss throughout your commercial building, such as around doors and windows, through cracks or openings in the wall, and where the foundation joins the main structure. Seal these areas appropriately to stop air leaks.
Improve insulation: Install or add insulation to areas in your building where heat or cool air could be lost. Have an energy audit conducted to identify spots of energy loss where more insulation should be added.
Seal HVAC ductwork: Air and energy leaks in the ductwork can account for substantial waste of energy and money. Make sure all sections of ductwork fit securely and tightly together. All connections should be sealed with metal tape or with mastic, a specialized sealant designed for ductwork.
2. Conduct Preventive Maintenance
As HVAC equipment ages, it loses efficiency and performance capacity. Regular preventive maintenance is the best thing you can do to keep your HVAC system operating at its best and most economical level, with the least number of interruptions of service. You can give your technician more time to focus on technical issues if you take care of small tasks, such as chancing air filters and cleaning the unit, yourself.
3. Use Improved Controllers
Technological advances have produced HVAC control systems that can significantly boost equipment performance and reduce energy consumption.
- Programmable thermostats: Programmable thermostats let you control HVAC system operation with considerable precision. You can set the thermostat to automatically reduce HVAC system operating during times when it’s not needed, such as at night when the business is closed, then automatically turn on again in the morning.
- Zoning systems: Zoning systems provide the ability to focus heating and cooling where you want or need it most. These systems use independent thermostats and a series of motorized dampers to separate your indoor spaces into distinct and separate. The temperature in each zone can be controlled separately without affecting temperatures in surrounding zones.
4. Upgrade Equipment
The most significant and most expensive of energy saving projects is the complete replacement of your existing furnace, air conditioner, heat pump, or boiler with a new high-efficiency model. High-efficiency HVAC equipment makes the best possible use of the energy consumed to produce heating or cooling.
- Get equipment with high efficiency ratings: The efficiency of furnaces, for example, is rated by AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency), while air conditioning is rated by SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio). Higher numbers mean greater efficiency.
- Make sure equipment is properly sized: HVAC systems must be properly sized, which means having enough functional capacity to properly heat or cool your building. Have your HVAC contractor perform a heating or cooling load calculation to determine how much of each is needed and make equipment recommendations based on that information.
- Put radiant heating in garages, warehouses, or large open areas: Radiant heating is a better choice for larger areas since it warms objects and occupants rather than the air.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about Plumbing, HVACR, Fire Protection and Alarm Systems in Mechanical, Commercial and Residential settings. For more information on energy saving projects that can reduce your energy consumption while also decreasing your monthly expenses, and to view projects we’ve worked on, visit our website!