High energy costs are one of the typical financial issues in every business. For more developed countries, companies usually incorporate smart electronic devices, such as a smart thermostat or smart LED lights, to conserve energy.
While these smart gadgets can reduce energy costs, they can be quite costly for some business owners. There are, however, cost-effective and almost no-cost measures in dealing with high business energy bills. Check them out here:
Make Use of Natural Lights
Why opt for artificial lights that can spike electricity prices when the light from the sky is entirely free and unlimited? The Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development had assured people that integrating natural light in infrastructure design trims down a building’s net energy consumption. Consequently, it saves you a lot of money.
Since skylights require less artificial light, you’re eventually reducing CO2 emission and making small changes in the current global warming. You can get all the materials you need from Simply Plastics. If you’re in the food industry, a passive solar gain throughout your business area may prevent other unwanted pests to settle in your building, as well. This idea, however, is better done with professional help.
Moreover, a naturally-lit interior doesn’t only make your working environment sustainable, but can also make an illusion that could turn your space wider. Also, psychology says that a naturally-lit environment allows people to concentrate better, work more efficiently, eat better, and be more energetic, which can be beneficial to your employees and clients.
Go for Shady Landscaping
Most business owners or managers refrain from planting tall trees outside their building. One reason is that trees could block the clients’ view and your business curb’s appeal, which may eventually influence sales. This is true and should be especially avoided when you’re just a newly built business.
However, when you have already well-established a brand image, there are more things that you have to worry, which mainly include energy costs. Business electricity bills are relevantly high during summer and winter. But here’s the catch! Shady landscaping is more than a visual feature. It can actually help you in reducing your yearly energy costs.
Shady trees, which must be properly planted on the right places, can protect your business area from the intense heat wave during the hot season and freezing winds during the cold season. In general, you can lessen air conditioning costs about 30%, while you can save around 20-50% of your energy consumption for heating.
Opt for Energy Efficient Windows
Windows are one of the contributors to energy waste. They can potentially increase your total business energy costs for about 10-25%. To conserve more energy, energy-efficient windows like single-pane and double-pane, ENERGY STAR certified, interior/exterior storm windows, and those glasses with low-E coatings are recommended.
In cold areas, it’s advised to install gas-filled glass windows with low-E or low-emissivity glass film coatings in your business area. This kind of coating can prevent visible, infrared, and ultraviolet lights from penetrating into the window glass, which makes your buildings warmer during winter and cooler during summer.
If your business is currently in a region that typically encounters extreme weather events, interior or exterior storm windows are highly recommended. These windows can put up with almost any strong storms and reduce unnecessary heat loss by 10-20%.
While opening windows improves air circulation in any building located in warmer areas, heat gain through these windows can still potentially give financial risks to your business’ energy costs.
In addition to windows with low-E coatings, you can also opt for ENERGY STAR windows. They can also lower the thermal energy diffused into your business area and can save you up to USD20-95 on your utility bills each year.
Install Solar Panels
Solar panel installation is becoming the new it in every business building design these days. You might think it’s an expensive investment at first. However, imagine how much you could save from its no maintenance, higher durability, and renewable source of energy features. All of these will aid you in reducing your monthly electricity bills.
An average commercial building can reduce its total energy costs by 75% percent, according to EnergySage market data. One business owner stated that before going solar in their operations, they used to spend around $1,950 in their monthly energy costs. However, after installing solar energy systems, they only pay about $500 in their monthly electric bills.
What’s more, business owners can get Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) once they invest in installing solar panels in their buildings or business areas. As of 2016, a federal tax credit equal to 30% of the total solar panel installation cost can be enjoyed by any business owner.
Don’t forget to ask your local government or utility companies about the tax incentives that you can enjoy when going greener. If you opt for solar panel installation, they might offer tax credit incentives. Some public utility companies give rebates if you use energy-saving appliances, too.