Greening Up Your Business Energy

Earth Day was just this past Saturday (April 22nd) so it seems like an appropriate time to talk about how your business can both do some good for the planet and can save you some money by being a little bit greener.

Cutting Lighting Costs

Most businesses need a lot of artificial lighting as windows can only light the rooms closest to the outer walls, if they have windows at all; many businesses do not.

As a result, artificial lighting costs spike with the use of incandescent light bulbs.

However, these costs can be reduced by using CFL or LED bulbs. Both types of bulbs use about 80% of the energy that an incandescent bulb would for the same amount of light.

LEDs are often brighter than their incandescent counterparts, allowing you to use fewer light fixtures with them. LED bulbs can also last upwards of 20 years.

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Spring Savings – Part 2

In celebration of spring, we are looking at great ways to lower your energy bills as the temperatures start rising.

Last time, we talked about maintenance, windows, and thermostats, but today we’ll be getting into cooking, air leaks, and fans.

Cooking Outdoors

With spring comes cookouts, with many families preparing a big meal for Memorial Day. But if you cook outside more often, you could actually save yourself some money.

Grilling is a grate (see what we did there?) way to have a delicious steak or some burgers and hot dogs. Grilled veggies can also be really delicious.

When you cook inside, a lot of the heat being used gets added to your home, making it uncomfortable and causing the AC to turn on and run longer.

You can curb some of this by using an overhead vent fan, but that can actually affect the effectiveness of some

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Spring Savings – Part 1

Last Monday, March 20th, was the first say of Spring and with that comes warmer temperatures and energy savings.

We’re going to look at some tips and tricks to help you save money on your energy bill this season and as we head into summer by preparing you for the warming temperatures.

Scheduled Maintenance

Now is a great time to have your AC checked out and serviced. Just like cars, your AC needs a tune up every year just before summer.

By taking care of this now, you’ll save yourself the hassle of having to get something fixed in the middle of summer when it’s miserably hot, technician availability is low, and repair costs are high.

Be sure to replace any air filters that need changing as well. This should be done every 1-3 months as needed.

Clean your AC system’s evaporator coil as well. When caked with

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Weatherstripping Your Windows

Windows are portals to the outdoors that allow us to get some fresh air on a bright, sunny day. However, older windows may be letting in some of that air when you don’t want it to, such as in the middle of the winter. They could also be letting out air in the summer.

One of the best things you can do to reduce energy waste in your home is to install weatherstripping.

Weatherstripping consists of several different methods and materials that seal up gaps where air can leak outside. These gaps could be around window frames, doors, chimneys, or even light switches.

Windows that are older can easily leak air, but with weatherstripping, you can keep your climate controlled air inside for a lot longer, reducing energy needs and saving you 5-10% on your energy bill.

Weatherstripping Process

First, you may want to

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Choosing a Water Heater for Your Home

Did you know that water heating is the second most expensive use of energy in your home? The most expensive is climate control, which accounts for half of a home’s energy use.

Water heating still takes up a staggering 14-18% of energy use. Most everything else is around or under 10%. With World Water Day coming up March 22, now is a good time to evaluate what kind of water heater may be the best option for your home.

Every day, Americans use about 64 gallons of water, leading to heating costs of between $400-600 every year.

There are several different types of water heaters, each with their own pros and cons. Certain ones work better than others based on different factors such as water demand, geographic location, and weather.

Storage Heater

Storage water heaters store up a large volume of water and continuously heat it as necessary to maintain

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Energy Efficiency Investments for Business Owners

A lot of times, people are hesitant to invest in energy efficiency programs and systems because of their upfront cost.

While it’s true that these systems can be costly to implement sometimes, they are a very wise investment that pays off big as time goes on, and not just in the most obvious way.

Productivity

Did you know that energy efficiency can improve the productivity of employees by as much as 10%?

A comfortable employee is more likely to accomplish a lot more than one who is too hot or too cold to focus on a task.

Many offices keep the air very cold, partly to account for all the people and electrical equipment there, but also partly because people tend to be more awake if they’re cold as opposed to when they are warm.

This has a drawback, however. For one, keeping a cold temperature amid constant heat generation

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Energy Audits: Saving You Hundreds Per Year

Have you ever received a home energy audit? If not, you could be missing some important energy savings.

An energy auditor inspects your home looking for areas where energy is being wasted, later providing solutions to reduce the energy waste and lower your energy bills.

Depending on where you live, these energy audits may be discounted or even free with rebates and incentives.

It’s important to know that you don’t have to do all the improvements at once if you don’t want to or can’t afford to. They are primarily suggestions for improving your energy use at home.

Blower Door

One of the biggest tests for improving energy use at home is the blower door test. This test measures how effective your home is at keeping inside air in and outside air out.

Most of your energy inefficiency stems from loss of climate controlled air. Since climate

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6 Ways to Cut Energy Costs

Ready to save some energy? Less energy use means saving more money, so we have some tips to help curb your energy consumption and lower your energy bills.

Shut Off The Burner
When you’re cooking on the stove or in the oven, you can actually shut off the burner about 5 minutes before you’re scheduled to finish. It may not seem like much, but when a stove or oven consumes 1000 or more kilowatts per hour of use, it can add up.The short time left after the burner shuts off usually isn’t enough to impact the cooking of your food. That said, don’t try it with pan frying or searing anything. You need a consistent heat to do those properly. Fans
Ceiling fans are a great way to circulate cool air in the summer. If you sit under a fan, you can actually raise the thermostat a couple more »

Cheap or Frugal: The Art of Saving Money

What’s the difference between being frugal and being cheap? Is one better than the other?

A lot of people equate the two terms as being the same, but while similar, they are actually quite different.

A frugal person will save money by assessing what is needed versus what is wanted, but unnecessary. A cheap person will just not spend much, even if the quality would be sub-par.

There are a lot of ways you can be frugal in your life and save money without giving up quality.

Living Below Your Means

Everyone knows that one family that has it all. New car, big house, all the best electronics and gadgets.

The reality is that family is likely just like you; they spend most of their income every month, evening out their income vs expenditures.

The difference is that they spend it on stuff they may not need. They have the

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Major Tips to Save Energy

Ready to save some money? Cutting back on electricity waste is a great way to save hundreds of dollars per year.

There are a lot of ways to save on your energy bills from making home improvements, to cutting waste, to changing your energy provider.

Switching your Energy Provider

One of the first things you should be doing is making sure you’re getting the best deal on your electricity.

Don’t let your utility roll you into a provider of last resort (POLR) or a default, utility-supplied plan. These are usually more expensive than a plan you could find.

Every time your plan is up for renewal, shop around for the best rate. You could save yourself a couple hundred bucks a year doing this!

Avoid Peak Hours and Freebie Hour Plans

If you have a plan which varies its rate between peak hours, which may vary by region, you’re paying

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