It sounds simple: Save energy in your office and cut costs. But some business owners aren't sure where to begin. Follow these helpful tips, many of which are easy to implement, to reduce your company's carbon footprint and save money in the process.
Shut Off the Lights
This simple little tip is not obvious for most small business owners. Must of us know someone who tends to forget to shut off the lights when leaving the room. Keep signs next to light switches as a helpful reminder to switch off the lights. Even better, consider using motion-activated lights in common areas or hallways that shut off after a certain period of time and automatically turn on when someone enters the room. Think of several ways to remind your employees to shut off the lights or have the lights turn on automatically. Some of these solutions don't require a big investment.
Upgrade Your Lights
Speaking of lighting, maybe you should upgrade your lights. Incandescent lights being replaced with fluorescent and LED lights. Meanwhile, UID lights are being used for larger offices since they're a better energy option. Even when it comes to fluorescent lights, it may be time to upgrade the fixtures. The older versions are less energy efficient.
When it comes to replacement bulbs, lumens are replacing watts. Lumens show you how much light your bulb will deliver. Watts, on the other hand, show you how much energy is being used. Use energy-efficient bulbs that contain the number of lumens that you need to run an energy-efficient office. Even exit signs use a lot of energy. Upgrade them with LED lights.
Move Your IT to the Cloud
Eliminate your computer servers and get on board with a cloud-based system. You no longer have to use multiple servers that run on a hot data center. With a cloud-based server, your employees can now telecommute. A small business that has 100 employees can significantly reduce its carbon footprint if they move to the cloud.
Stop the Thermostat Wars
Does your office partake in thermostat wars? One person complains that the office is too cold while another person complains that it's too hot. Southwest Industrial Electric has some ideas on how to reduce the bickering and make everyone in the workplace comfortable.
Smart thermostat systems from Nest include a feature called Thermostat Lock. This feature allows employees to adjust the temperature when they're within a certain range of the thermostat. This prevents your energy bills from getting out of control. Having a few fans in your office can help keep it cooler during the hot months, and cost less than a cooling system.
Of course, you don't have to invest in a smart thermostat. Use a programmable thermostat that adjusts to your ideal temperature in the evenings and during the weekends. An investment in a programmable thermostat can keep energy costs down.
Copy machines, fax machines, and printers require paper, which is another costly resource. Try going paperless as much as possible. Include any documents that you need to share with others in a shared drive, cloud storage or file-sharing service.
Replace Your Old Heaters
Old heaters are notoriously inefficient. Newer heaters are better for circulating heat and producing less energy. If you're not sure which heaters to use, Southwest Industrial Electric can provide a free inspection and give you some input.