Saving energy for your small business starts with takeCHARGE! In addition to our rebates through the Business Efficiency Program, we’ve put together some tips to help save energy in your small business. From switching off unnecessary lights to using smart power strips, these tips can help you start saving in your business today! Check out these low cost (or no cost!) ways to help your business be more energy-efficient and improve your bottom line. Some tips only take a few minutes, but the savings really add up!

Switch Off
Be sure to switch off lights and other equipment when areas are not in use such as after hours, weekends, or holidays. Additionally, consider powering off vending machines during slow times. Newer vending machines often come with a low power mode option that allows the machine to be placed in low-energy lighting and/or low-energy refrigeration states during times of inactivity.

Conduct a Walkabout
Doing a walkabout of your facility is a great way to identify energy savings opportunities in your business. They can help you identify unnecessary equipment that can be unplugged, check settings on equipment, manage set points on thermostats and also provide the chance to better understand how energy is used throughout your business.

Get Employees Invested
Saving energy is a team sport. Inform employees on how they can save energy and encourage them to share their own ideas on how to cut down on energy use. By having an open dialogue, you can create an energy efficient work culture at your business.

Switch to LED Bulbs
Swapping out incandescent bulbs for ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs not only use less energy, they generate considerably less heat, reducing your cooling needs. You can also get back up to $10 per bulb with a takeCHARGE rebate.

Change or Clean Your HVAC Filters
The more you use heating and air-conditioning, the more air and particles are being run through your HVAC system. Regularly change (or clean if reusable) HVAC filters every month during peak heating or cooling seasons. New filters are relatively cheap and dirty filters cost more to use, overwork your equipment, and result in lower indoor air quality.

Set Your Thermostat
One of the easiest ways to save money on your electricity bill is by controlling your thermostat. Try to keep your thermostats a few degrees lower when heating your building, especially in unoccupied areas (e.g., during weekends and non-working hours). You can also get money back with a takeCHARGE rebate when you install programmable thermostats in your business.

Use Natural Light
Instead of using lights during the day, let the sun shine in. After all, it’s free, and efficient. Just remember that it can impact your business’s temperature depending on heating and cooling season.

Install Occupancy Sensors
Install occupancy sensors in proper locations to automatically turn off lighting. It’s vitally important to ensure that the sensors are properly installed: even good equipment can be installed wrong, so don’t install the sensor in an obstructed location (e.g. behind a coat rack, door, bookcase or other furniture). The sensor must be clear to identify motion. You can save up to 40% on lighting costs and get a takeCHARGE rebate!

Use Energy Efficient Exit Signs
As exit signs are always using energy, it’s important to ensure that they are efficient. Install qualified LED exit signs or use LED retrofit kits to reduce maintenance costs and ensure your exit signs are as efficient as possible. An energy efficient exit sign can eliminate costs related to lamp replacement and you can also save with a takeCHARGE rebate on both LED exit signs and retrofit kits!

Turn off Unused Equipment
Turning off machines can translate to significant energy savings. Office computer monitors are an easy way to save on your business’s energy bill. Ensure that monitors are set on automatic sleep mode or are manually turned off when not in use. Screen savers do not reduce energy use by monitors.

Unplug Appliances or Use a Smart Power Strip
It’s important to unplug equipment that is not in use as many devices continue to draw a small amount of power even when they are switched off. For certain equipment that cannot be easily unplugged, consider using a smart power strip. Smart power strips can be used to shut down power to products that go into standby mode and help avoid energy waste.

Always Buy Energy Efficient Products
The ENERGY STAR mark indicates the most efficient computers, printers, copiers, televisions, windows, ceiling fans, and other appliances and equipment. When replacing or purchasing new equipment for your business, look for ENERGY STAR certified products. These products are much more efficient than regular products and generally cost about the same.