Warm Weather Tips for Business

Save Energy and Money at Work

Running a successful business means making every dollar count, and cutting back on unnecessary energy use is an easy way to keep your hard-earned money working for you. This guide is designed to help you target your energy-saving efforts for maximum value and impact.

The savings numbers are based on your total summer electric bill. Equipment mentioned must be electric powered for estimates to be accurate.

Fast and Free

Here are some suggestions you can put to work in minutes, and at absolutely no cost to you.

  • Turn up your thermostat. Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher. (Save: 2% per degree above the old setting)
  • Eliminate wasted energy.
    • Close window blinds to shade interior spaces from direct sunlight. (Save: 2%)
    • Put your computer, monitor, and printer on sleep mode when not in use. (Save: 0.5%)
    • Turn off lights in unoccupied rooms. (Save: 1-2%)
    • Keep exterior and freight doors closed as much as possible. (Save: up to 2%)
    • Perform scheduled maintenance on air-conditioning units including cleaning condenser coils, replacing air filters, and checking ducts and pipe insulation for damage. (Save: 2-5%)
    • Encourage employees to be energy conscious.
  • Optimize food service equipment.
    • Fully load cooking equipment in order to use energy more efficiently. (Save: 1%)
    • Turn off backup fryers and ovens during low production periods. (Save: 1%)
    • Make sure oven doors fit tightly and gaskets are in good condition. (Save: 0.5%)

Inexpensive Energy Solutions

Make a quick trip to your local hardware store to purchase inexpensive energy saving tools and equipment.

  • Provide the right light levels. Use bi-level switches to reduce lighting to the necessary light level. If workstations are equipped with task lighting, consider disconnecting unnecessary lamps and fluorescent ballasts. Be sure to maintain safe lighting conditions. (Save: up to 15%)
  • Choose Energy Star® Lighting Products. Replace incandescent light bulbs with Energy Star® compact fluorescent light bulbs. (Save: up to 10%)
  • Install a programmable thermostat. Lowering your air conditioning when you are closed will avoid unnecessary cooling costs. (save: 1-4%)

Good Energy-Saving Investments

Planning to do some remodeling soon? When you are ready to replace equipment, consider these energy efficiency suggestions.

  • Buy energy-efficient equipment. When purchasing computers, monitors, printers, fax machines and copiers, choose Energy Star® models that "power down" after a user-specified period of inactivity. (save: 0.5%)
  • Reduce your lighting costs.
    • Retrofit T12 lights and magnetic ballasts to T8 lights and electronic ballasts. (10-15%)
    • Retrofit incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lights. (Save: 1-5%)
    • Remove excess fluorescent lamps. (Save: up to 8%)
    • Install automatic room lighting controls to turn lights on or off, depending on occupancy or time of day. (Save 1-3%)
    • Retrofit incandescent or fluorescent exit signs with long-lasting, low-energy LED exit signs. (Save 0.2%)
  • Improve the efficiency of your cooling and ventilation systems.
    • Replace old package air conditioning systems with Energy Star® units, which are 20 to 30 percent more efficient than older models. (Save: 2-8%)
    • Install an energy management system to better control heating, ventilation, air conditioning equipment and lighting. (Save: 2-8%)
    • Rewire restroom fans to operate with the lights. (Save: up to 0.5%)
    • Install ceiling fans, which will enable you to raise the thermostat setting up to four degrees while maintaining the same comfort level. (Save: up to 5%)
    • Install reflective window film, solar screens or awnings on south and west facing windows. (Save: up to 5%)
    • Install an air conditioning economizer to bring in outside air when cool outside. (Save: up to 5%)
    • When replacing roofing, install Energy Star® reflective roofing materials. (Save: 1-8%)
  • Tune up your refrigeration units.
    • Adjust door latches and replace worn door gaskets. (Save: 0.5%)
    • Use insulated night covers on display cases. (Save: 1%)
    • Install automatic door-closers and strip curtains on walk-in freezers or coolers. (Save: up to 1%)
  • Choose efficient food service equipment. Purchase insulated cooking equipment whenever possible (e.g., fryers, ovens, coffee machines). (Save: up to 1%)

Explore the California Science Center site for year-round energy-saving tips, as well as warm weather energy-saving ideas for your home.