Caring for Business Equipment

Improving energy efficiency can lower your business' utility costs up to 30 percent, and provide these benefits:

  • Positive cash flow from savings.
  • Enhanced comfort and lighting may increase staff productivity.
  • Many energy-efficient technologies decrease maintenance requirements and costs. 
  • Customer comfort: A well-lit environment can increase sales and encourage repeat business.
  •  Enhanced public image: Contribution to environmental conservation positively differentiates you from competitors.
Click the equipment categories to get money savings tips and ways to improve energy efficiency.

Space Heating

Heating systems are critical to most small businesses, but also can represent a large component of your utility expenses. A wide variety of techniques and fuels are available for heating. Many heating systems have supporting equipment such as thermostats, pipes and ducts, which provide opportunities for saving energy.

HSB's energy calculators can help you save up to 20 percent per year in energy costs. Use the calculators to identify ways you can lower your heating energy consumption and save money, while improving the operation and maintenance of this equipment.

Boiler Calculators Insulation Calculators 
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Energy Savings Tips

Monitor the boiler water quality. Boiler waterside scale acts as an insulator thereby preventing heat transfer from the fire to waterside. As little as 1/32 inch of scale increases fuel consumption by as much as 7 percent.

Lighting

Lighting systems are critical and can account for up to 50 percent of your electricity consumption. In addition, all lighting systems produce heat. Heat from lighting is one of the primary sources of heat gain inside a building and presents a considerable added load to the air conditioning system. An energy efficient lighting system can save up to 50 percent of lighting energy, plus up to 20 percent of cooling energy, compared to inefficient lighting methods.

HSB's Lighting Calculator provides a simple way to estimate how much money can be saved by replacing older inefficient lighting fixtures with newer technology.

Lighting Calculators 
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Energy Savings Tips

Replace fluorescent T-12 fixture/lamps (1.5” diameter) with T-8 fluorescent fixtures/lamps (1” diameter). T-8 lamps typically use 40 percent fewer watts and produce 40 percent less heat. This is important in warmer months when air conditioning is needed.

Water Heating

Water heating can be a large energy expense for your business, accounting for about 4 percent of your utility bills. By taking just a few low-cost, energy-saving steps, you can reduce your water heating bills.

Lowering your hot water heating systems' energy consumption can mean big dollar savings while reducing your potential for equipment failure resulting in interruption of your operations.

Boiler Calculators Insulation Calculators 
Energy Savings Tips

Inspect all hot water lines and tanks to be sure they are insulated.

Space Cooling and Ventilation

Proper insulation can help cut energy use. Today's air conditioners use 30 to 50 percent less energy than units made in the mid 1970s. If your ventilation system is not getting proper attention, energy dollars may end up on the wrong side of the fans. A 10 percent reduction in fan speed can result in a 30 percent reduction in power costs. Ultraviolet lights and electrostatic air filters may have newer more efficient wattages available.

Use the calculator links below to see how you can reduce operating costs.
Air Conditioning Calculators Insulation Calculator Fans - Variable Speed Drive Calculators  
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Energy Savings Tips

An Energy Management System can reduce energy usage 10 to 30 percent. This reduction is achieved by limiting air conditioning operation during unoccupied hours.

Telephone and Internet

Internet and communication equipment may be the lifeline to your customers and sales. This equipment is also a vital link to vendors, and employees in times of business continuity. It just makes sense to protect these key resources. Likewise, with your inventory control system.

If data and communication lines are connected to business equipment, these connections or lines must be protected from electrical surges, just like the power lines. Low voltage communication circuits can be damaged by a voltage spike that would not be severe enough to damage AC power circuits of the same equipment.
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Energy Savings Tips

Certain communication equipment may not need to operate around the clock. If possible, automatically turn off all non-vital communication equipment after hours.

Cooking and Refrigeration

Kitchen areas, whether large or small, can be major energy consumers. However, these areas can offer some easy energy cost savings.

New commercial refrigeration equipment is very efficient. Replacement often has a short payback period. Smaller operations should ensure they are using only ENERGY STAR or similar equipment and appliances.

The use of Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) in exhaust hoods can result in up to 50 percent energy savings compared to standard exhaust hood installations.

Fans - Variable Speed Drive Calculators 
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Energy Savings Tips

Repairing leaks and recharging refrigeration unit coolant will help restore the system to its design rating. This can improve efficiency by as much as 15 percent.

Electrical

The energy consumed by business equipment is significant, but it also offers opportunities for saving money. Inefficient office equipment not only draws power, but also generates heat that can contribute to higher cooling bills. Implementing a power management program can help save money by disconnecting non-essential loads during extended times of non-use, e.g. coffee makers, water coolers, vending machine lights, registers, etc. 

Without electric power, it’s tough to operate a business. A properly maintained electrical distribution system will reduce electrical energy usage as well as help protect sensitive electronic equipment from damage.

Vampire Load Calculator  
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Energy Savings Tips

Computers and other electronic equipment use electricity around the clock, even when not in use. Encourage employees to turn off all office equipment after hours and on weekends. Likewise, turn off lights.