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Energy Saving Tips

Running a business effectively is all about efficiency, and that starts with finding ways to save on your energy use. And getting more out of your business’ electricity and natural gas can be as simple as remembering to turn off the lights to investing in energy efficient electronics.

We've collected some ideas to help you get started:

Ways to save electricity

  • Avoid standby mode - whether it’s called phantom draw or vampire power, many devices continue to suck up electricity even though they’re no longer performing their primary task.
  • Attach devices to a common power bar - turn off that squid’s mess of electronics in a single switch.
  • Reduce your charging time - smartphones and other small devices only need a few hours to fully charge, unplug them overnight.
  • Switch to compact florescent and LED lighting - each old bulb you swap saves you in the long run and can be done easily with virtually no interruption to your operation. Some LED lights are 75 per cent more efficient and last 25 times longer than traditional bulbs.
  • Change your exterior lamps - replacing halogen bulbs with high-intensity discharge bulbs continues to provide bright lighting in large outdoor areas, but at a lower cost. Consider updating areas like exits first, where lighting is always on.
  • Clean light diffusers - the efficiency of the translucent glass cover on your lamps is less effective when it is dusty or dirty.
  • Update your monitors and switch to laptops - the savings on your power bill could be used to help change your desktops to laptops or upgrade any CRT monitors still in use. Laptops can be up to 90 per cent more efficient than desktops.
  • Power down for the weekend - if your business closes for large chunks of time, consider switching off breakers to non-critical areas (not including blinking clocks and the office fridge).

Ways to save natural gas

  • Be a control freak - the energy consumed by programmable thermostats, dimmers, timers and motion sensors is more than offset by the savings they create. Occupancy sensors can reduce energy consumption in an area by 15 to 80 per cent, depending on usage.
  • Replace fan belts with cogged belts - the small teeth on cogged belts can improve the efficiency of each motor they are swapped into by up to 10 per cent.
  • Request ENERGY STAR® certified vending machines - some models sense when they are sold out and use even less power in your office.
  • Avoid installing appliances that give off heat near a thermostat- inaccurate feedback to your thermostat can lead to wasted energy -- and a hot room.
  • Seal and insulate ducts- your air conditioner or furnace is working harder than it has to if your ductwork is leaking air.
  • Consider an energy auditor- a certified energy auditor can point out areas where your business is wasting heat or electricity and direct you toward applicable green grants or funding.

Water saving tip

  • Upgrade to low-pressure sprinkler nozzles - leaking nozzles waste water and cause your pump to run often and inefficiently -- if beyond repair, consider a low-pressure system.

If you’re looking for more ideas on saving water, visit the City of Calgary’s website.

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Customers are free to purchase natural gas services or electricity services from a retailer of their choice. For a list of retailers, visit ucahelps.alberta.ca or call 310-4822 (toll free in Alberta).