During the dog days of summer, we’re grateful for the modern marvel of air conditioning. The systems aren’t cheap to operate, though, so any usage offset provides welcomed savings. In the spirit of conservation, pay attention to these common things which can negatively impact energy bills during the summer.
1). Overuse of Air Conditioning
We’ve all been there before: it’s another scorcher outside, but we’re in an igloo known as the office. If you see employees reaching for their cardigans or space heaters (a double whammy) during the middle months, consider increasing the temperature setpoint.
2). Letting Air Escape
You paid for that refreshing, cool air — hang onto it! Leaving doors and windows open may be obvious culprits, but check for cracks and leaks around them as well. The money you pay to have these areas resealed could be quickly offset with energy savings.
3) Non-Scheduled AC Run Times
It’s great to have the cool, conditioned air ready when your team members arrive, but are you setting it too early? Or not setting it at all and letting the AC work around the clock? Either way, getting a smart thermostat which provides scheduling and runtime diagnostics can prevent the system from operating more than necessary.
4) Lights (aka Heat Lamps)
Lights generate a lot of heat, and that warmth can increase the operative temperature. Turn lights off when natural light suffices or when a space is unoccupied. Daylight and occupancy sensors can automate these adjustments so you don’t have to choose between wasting your time or energy.
5) “Vampire” Loads
Electronics, whether in use or not, draw power whenever plugged into an outlet. Computers, monitors and equipment of all shapes and sizes will emit electrical heat AND consume energy. If you don’t have an elaborate Building Automation System, try simply unplugging devices — especially those with higher energy loads — and save in two ways.
6) Nearby Heat Sources
Your thermostat is taking a sampling of the nearby ambient air temperature, so if the location is not representative of how the rest of the space feels, you may have a heat source nearby. Consider adding multiple points of temperature readings to inform your system, or at least removing anything nearby that's known to emit heat.
Simple steps can save you big bucks this summer! If you have any questions about your building’s cooling or heating profile, be sure to talk to your HVAC technician or friendly ENA Solution consultant!