Cheaper Electricity, Gas for businesses from Utility Consultants and Energy Consultants based in Norfolk, UK

Energy Saving Tips

Saving Energy saves you money and helps combat climate change. There are some simple ways individuals and organisations can save energy. Please see below for some examples of these.

  • 20% of electricity generated in the UK is used for lighting. This is one area of energy use that can use a variety of energy saving technologies.
    • Switch off lights when not in use and label switches to encourage people to turn lights off when they are not in use.
    • Measure light levels so you are not using too high wattage lighting.
    • Time switches can be used for lighting over defined periods and solar time switches automatically adjust as seasonal day length changes.
    • Movement detectors sense the presence of people and/or vehicles and turn lights on for a short period of time. Commonly used for external lighting but may also be used internally for areas of low use such as stores or toilets.
    • Photocell controls sense light levels.
    • Compact fluorescent lamps operate as a plug in replacement for tungsten bulbs. They give five times the efficiency and ten times the life of a tungsten bulb.
    • New designs of fluorescent tubes have improved efficiency. ‘T8’ (26mm) tubes can be used as a direct replacement for old ‘T12’ (38mm) tubes giving 8% efficiency improvement. New electronically controlled triphosphor fittings will provide increased efficiencies of 20%, improve lamp life and allow dimming. Sodium and mercury discharge lamps give the highest efficiency for lighting externally and in large buildings.
  • Space heating in commercial buildings is usually the highest energy consumer. Savings fall into three major categories – More efficient equipment, Better control or Stopping heat losses.
    • More efficient equipment.
      Regular servicing helps maintain the thermal efficiency of boilers and heaters. Boilers and pipework should be adequately insulated. Condensing boilers and direct radiant heaters are more efficient than older designs of heating systems.
    • Better control.
      Time switches should be reviewed regularly over the heating season. Mechanical should be replaced with accurate electronic versions. Thermostats should also be checked regularly. Setting a thermostat 1C too high will increase running costs by up to 10%. Recommended settings are 16C for warehousing, 16C to 18C for manufacturing and 20C for offices. Control systems should be zoned with all radiators fitted with thermostatic or mild weather mixing valves.
    • Set back controls which provide a lower secondary setting should be fitted where heating has to be left on for extended periods of time (for instance to prevent hardware deterioration during the night time).
  • Stopping heat loss.
    • Insulation in walls, ceilings and around pipes and boilers reduces wasteful heat loss. Install insulation to the current building regulations or industry recommended levels.
    • Draught proofing prevents heat loss and reduces heating costs. Draught around doors and windows is very cost effective.
    • Warm air rises to the apex of tall buildings. Use air re-circulation to bring Air back to worker level and reduce the need for heater operation.
  • Water Heating.
    • Reduce water temperatures to a maximum of 65°C.
    • Insulate water storage cylinders, pipework, boilers and calorifiers.
    • Use water heating time switches to coincide with hot water requirements. It is wasteful to heat water for unnecessarily long periods.
    • Reduce water flows. Spray taps for hand washing helps to achieve this.
    • Water heaters should be placed as close as possible to the point of water use as long pipe runs waste both water and energy.
    • Use instantaneous water heaters where water demand is low.
    • In the Summer turn off large boilers, which are sized to deliver high winter heating requirements. Use appropriately sized locally positioned boilers or immersion heater tanks for these periods.
  • Air Conditioning and Refrigeration.
    • Avoid excess cooling. Air conditioning is rarely needed below 24 - 26°C.
    • Use natural cooling if possible. Care should be taken not to use refrigeration/air conditioning at the same time as natural cooling.
    • Ensure that thermostats are calibrated properly and timeswitches are set to match occupancy. The setting of cooling thermostats should be well above that of heating thermostats to ensure both systems do not operate simultaneously.
    • Insulate and shade refrigerants and ducts carrying cold air.
    • Service cooling systems, checking refrigerant levels, internal control system operations, airflow round heat transfer coils, filters and defrost cycles.
    • Seal cooled areas to avoid outside air entering.

For further information and advice contact www.carbontrust.co.uk