Did you know October 5th is Energy Efficiency Day?
Energy Efficiency Day was established to promote the impact that energy efficiency can have on people’s lives and business results. This is the third year the day has been celebrated and it’s a great opportunity for all of us to talk and learn about the benefits of using energy more efficiently not only for today, but also for future generations.
Here are the Kambo team’s top Energy Efficiency Day energy saving recommendations:
1. Get an Energy Assessment
Booking an energy assessment is the first step to improving a building’s efficiency. Without knowing the existing condition of a building and its energy systems, it is impossible to plan improvements. A thorough level one energy assessment will provide a snapshot of the site and a basic inventory of energy systems. It is industry best practice to assess your buildings annually; this allows you to keep an eye on aging building systems and take advantage of new, energy efficient building technology as soon as it becomes cost-effective. Kambo offers complimentary level one energy assessments, complete with expert recommendations targeted at increasing cash flow through utility bill reduction.
To book an Energy Assessment call or text us at 604-629-7813, or send us an email – [email protected]
2. Upgrade to Energy Efficient Lighting
In the complex world of building energy management, lighting upgrade projects are relatively straight-forward and an excellent first step to a more efficient building. They can be completed with minimal disruption to building occupants, leave your building with improved light quality and curb appeal, and reduce lighting operation costs by as much as 80%. Capturing the data required for a lighting upgrade project estimate can usually be done during a simple level one energy assessment.
The initial cost of replacing an outdated lamp with an LED is usually paid back in energy cost savings within the first two years of use. Even when compared to efficient fluorescent lighting, LEDs have a much longer lifespan and use less electricity, meaning that over their operating lifetime they will save you money. In addition to being the more energy efficient option, there are many other valuable benefits of switching to LEDs such as a decreased cooling load, more dimming capabilities, no warm-up time, and many others.
3. Prepare Your HVAC
Fall can be a stressful time for building operators depending on how building occupants respond to colder weather. Whatever the building heating system, if it isn’t set and ready to go at the first call for heat, occupants will be left chilly and irritated. Under-desk radiant heaters that suck up electricity and wreak havoc on a balanced HVAC system start getting plugged in, and if there’s one thing we know at Kambo, it’s that those things never get unplugged!
While HVAC maintenance should occur quarterly, a few extra steps are necessary at the beginning of the heating season:
– Clean filters and remove dust build-up that’s occurred over the summer
– Ensure all pumps and motors are up-to-date on their inspection
– Check the occupied and unoccupied temperature set points in all spaces
– If there were any issues identified during last season’s inspection, ensure they’ve been addressed
– Always double-check that heating systems are functioning in unoccupied spaces where exposed piping or other at-risk equipment could be damaged if freezing occurs. It may have been working last winter, but that’s no guarantee it will be working this winter
– If heat trace or another type of secondary heating is used to protect plumbing, make sure it’s functioning before it’s needed
4. Occupant Engagement
The success of any energy efficiency project is dependent on people as much as it is the technology. When Kambo Energy Solutions Specialists are performing an energy assessment of a building, they record information about many aspects of the building related to energy, but they also go a step further to capture important details about the occupants’ habits and level of energy-consciousness by noting things such as:
– Lights left on in vacant areas
– Lights on in areas where daylight would provide sufficient light levels
– Plug loads such as computers and monitors left on when not in use
– An unreasonable level of space heating and/or cooling
– Windows being left open in actively heated or air-conditioned space
An insight into occupant behavior is of great value to building owners and operators who may otherwise not be aware because they are not present in the building themselves. Because we are always most interested in upgrades that will return the highest payback on a low initial investment, occupant habits are especially important because they cost nothing to improve. While we always recommend the appropriate technology to correct some of these issues above (such as installing vacancy sensors for lighting), these controls are only effective if they are successfully adopted by the occupants of the space.