Simple Routines and Preventative Maintenance Make a Real Difference
If you’re a property manager or business owner, you know that even the smallest oversight can turn into an expensive problem over time. That’s why it’s critically important to ensure your HVAC system is running efficiently throughout the year. With the EPA estimating that commercial buildings typically waste more than 30% of the energy they consume, you can’t be too careful in managing where and how you utilize your HVAC resources.
Conduct an Energy Audit
Do you know how much energy your building uses on a daily, weekly or monthly basis? What periods are most expensive for you, in terms of utility costs? When was the last time you had a professional HVAC technician service your current heating and cooling equipment? These are all important questions that will inform your energy decisions for the months and years ahead. Furthermore, it can be extremely useful to compare usage rates and other data from year to year. Gather that information, and you’ll be able to refer to it again and again.
Turn Off Unused Appliances, Electronics and Lights
Did you know that the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that commercial businesses in the United States spend more than $1 billion dollars a year on office equipment left plugged in or “on” unecessarily? Even thermostats set to cool or heat empty offices on weekends, holidays, and other off periods really add up. It seems obvious, but make sure you’re not wasting energy when you or your staff are not in the building. Remind employees to unplug equipment they don’t need, and avoid heating or cooling empty rooms unnecessarily. When it comes to your bottom line, the details matter.
Clean Those Air Filters
Did you know that a dirty air filter in turn reduces airflow, forcing your HVAC system to work harder (and use up more energy)? According to many experts, you should be changing or cleaning your filters monthly during peak heating and cooling periods. It’s a cheap, easy fix that will reduce wear and tear on your HVAC equipment, and promote cleaner air circulating through your workspace. Whether you have a larger building (which may use filters equipped with static pressure sensors) or a smaller commercial space that requires you to physically inspect each filter, it’s worth it to check and replace them regularly.
Locate Your Thermostats Wisely
Did you know a poorly placed thermostat could result in unnecessary heating or cooling costs? Placement near windows, fans, doors or severe drafts can affect thermostat temperature measurement and in turn, mean your HVAC system is responding at the wrong times.
Putting a thermostat near copiers, coffee makers, computers and other heat generating equipment can also translate into inappropriate readings. Even people walking by may also create drafts that affect its functioning. Every thermostat should be away from people and equipment on a flat, interior wall. Have your professional HVAC consultant check to ensure your thermostats are in exactly the right places. It’s an easy way to reduce costs on a daily basis, without sacrificing comfort.
We’re Just Getting Started!
You’ll want to check ductwork, vents, and other components in your HVAC system regularly to ensure that they are working properly. Variable refrigerant flow systems may also be extremely useful for certain commercial buildings. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let a certified technician inspect every element of your HVAC equipment to make sure it’s right for you. They’ll also provide you with a customized service plan for keeping the system running smoothly. It’s a fact: regular maintenance and thorough inspections mean lower energy bills for your commercial building throughout the year.
Have questions on the best ways to save energy in your commercial building? Let Air-Tro help you conduct an energy audit. Our experienced professionals have been keeping California businesses comfortable since 1969. Call us today at (626) 357-3535.