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9 Strategies to Lower Your Company’s Energy Costs



9 Strategies to Lower Your Company's Energy Costs

You may have seen an increase in your business’s power bill over time for one of two reasons: either your use has increased or energy costs have increased, or both.

It’s highly possible that you will be paying the commercial price for electricity if you own a business because commercial and residential rates are not the same. The US Energy Information Administration defines a commercial property as a retail store, restaurant, hotel, school, office, and more.

Commercial power rates have almost doubled in the last 20 years, from an average of 7.5 cents per kWh across the country to 13 cents. You can attempt to reduce your usage even though there isn’t much you can do about rising electricity bills.

“Heating and cooling is the biggest source of energy use in most homes. If you have a business, you probably have a lot more space to heat and cool, and much larger energy bills,” said Jon Reed, senior energy editor at CNET. In fact, the EIA reports that heating and cooling alone account for 32% of commercial energy consumption, the largest category of consumption for businesses. “Being strategic about how you use energy can have a major impact on your bottom line,” Reed said.

Start using these nine energy-saving suggestions to cut down on your use, save energy expenditures, and increase your profitability.

Here are nine suggestions to start reducing your company’s energy costs.

1. Examine How Much Energy You Consume

Knowing how much energy you use now is the greatest approach to start saving money on your energy bill. This entails monitoring the number of kilowatts your company uses each month, as well as the months that it occurs and the times of day that it uses the most energy (and how that relates to peak and off-peak hours). According to Michael Kraten, director of accounting program innovations at the University of Houston’s C.T. Bauer College of Business, you should examine at least a year’s worth of electrical bills in order to accomplish this. Energy experts or brokers can audit your electricity use, while he advises business owners to handle this themselves (or assign it to an employee).

2. Set Up Intelligent Thermostats

Utilizing the knowledge you gained from an energy audit, you can lower your usage. To avoid heating or cooling your office while no one is there, you can preprogram the temperature using a smart thermostat, for example.

An internet-connected gadget that simplifies HVAC system scheduling is a smart thermostat. It is possible to activate the heating and cooling system before someone enters the office and have it switch off on its own when the last person departs. According to the US Department of Energy, only adjusting your smart thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit on the majority of winter days can save your annual energy expenses by 10%.

Virtual power plans are incentive programs offered by several utilities that automatically change the temperature during periods of high consumption and credit your payment

3. Make Sure Your Company Operates in A Deregulated Market

At the moment, the energy markets are either fully or partially deregulated in 18 states in the US and the District of Columbia. The energy market is more competitive with retail players thanks to deregulation, also referred to as energy choice. According to some analysts, this leads to more options for energy providers and cheaper costs. But it also causes misunderstanding. Because of this, it’s critical to examine your company’s energy usage profile and consult with several energy suppliers prior to making a decision.

You can save money if you make informed decisions. Business owners can choose an energy supplier in energy choice markets by comparing features like price per kilowatt, fixed or variable rate, energy source (like renewables), and contract length. By putting your ZIP code into a retail energy marketplace, like SaveOnEnergy (owned by Red Ventures, CNET’s parent company), or by getting in touch with a reputable energy broker, you may find out if your company is situated in an energy choice market.

4. Invest in Energy-efficient Machinery

Appliances that are older, such dishwashers, washing machines, refrigerators, and other equipment, might waste energy. To assist in reducing your company’s energy expenses, think about upgrading your appliances, especially the energy-efficient ones.

Find out here which energy-saving improvements are eligible for rebates, tax credits, or other incentives.

5. Take a look for “energy vampires”

Look out for “energy vampires”—electronic devices that draw power even when they are not in use. Computers, TVs, speakers, and kitchen appliances are some of these gadgets. When not in use, unplug them to save energy consumption and your power cost. In order to conserve money, ask staff members at establishments where computers are used to turn off devices at night or on weekends.

Additionally, there are gadgets that can accomplish this for you, such smart power strips and plugs. There’s no shortage of possibilities.

6. Make The Switch to Energy-saving Lights

The sale of incandescent light bulbs was essentially outlawed last year by the Department of Energy Efficiency regulations, carrying out a 2007 directive from former President George W. Bush. Even though businesses will no longer carry these bulbs, many probably still exist across the nation. If your company currently employs these outdated lights, you should think about making the move to LEDs, which, depending on estimates, can save anywhere from $50 to over $150 per bulb during its lifetime.

7. Use Solar Power

Sunlight is captured by solar panels, which then transform it into power. Your company can partially or entirely offset its electricity bill if it has enough solar panels. In addition to reducing energy costs, solar panels also provide business owners with more tax credits and incentives under the Inflation Reduction Act. Particularly helpful for businesses that depend on charging electric vehicles are solar panels.

8. Include A Standby Battery

You’ll probably notice increases in your energy prices during peak demand hours if your utility levies time-of-use rates. Having a backup battery supply will help you weather those energy price fluctuations. The plan is to release that stored energy when rates climb.

Batteries can be used to store extra solar power and to run your business in the event of a blackout. You may regulate when and how your battery’s stored energy is used when combined with a hybrid solar system or smart electric panel. A virtual power plant application might be able to save you money on your company’s battery system.

9. Industrial Heat Pumps

You can greatly reduce the amount of money you spend on heating and cooling your company by installing a heat pump. Recently, the DOE announced the launch of an accelerator program aimed at advancing technology and accelerating the commercialization of more efficient models.

Because a heat pump combines cooling and heating into one HVAC system, it saves money. To put it simply, a heat pump pumps heat out or transfers heat within. Compared to older air conditioner models or electric furnaces, they are more energy-efficient and use less electricity.

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