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Business Energy: Preparing Your Business for Winter

Preparing for winter is essential for businesses, not just in terms of things like staffing and inventory but also when it comes to energy.

In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of businesses being prepared for winter with energy usage in mind. We’ll provide insights and advice for decision makers to help you keep costs lower during winter by implementing energy efficient actions.

Energy Loss in Winter

With increased energy consumption and the potential for large energy losses, winter can be a terrible time for companies. This period between November and February is referred to as the triad period. During this period, electricity users are advised to reduce their consumption as energy costs peak at this time.

Let’s take a look at where your company could be losing energy:

Inefficient buildings: According to the Department of Energy, approximately 25% of heat in a building is lost through doors and windows. Poorly sealed windows and doors can allow warm air to escape, driving up your heating costs.

Poor Insulation: This one may seem obvious; however, many buildings suffer due to insufficient insultation in walls and roofs that leads to wasted energy due to the escaping heat. By investing in insulation and proper installation, business can drastically reduce energy costs.

Neglected Heating Systems: Heat systems like radiators or heaters that haven’t been maintained become less efficient over time and therefore require more energy to work at full capacity. Having properly maintained heating systems may cost the business money in the short term, however, you could save more in the long run.

Unmaintained Machinery: Similar to the above, poorly maintained machinery can lead to it requiring more energy to reach full capacity or it may not even reach full capacity. Keeping equipment in the best chape possible is an essential part of keeping energy cost low, especially during the winter months.

Heating Empty Spaces: In larger business premises its essential you make sure that empty spaces aren’t being heated. Where possible it is advised that you zone your heating or other control it, this is to make sure that energy wastage is kept to a minimum. An easy way to think about it is, focus on heating in space, opposed to the space itself.

Lost Heat from Open Doors/Windows: It isn’t just the unintended gaps in doors and windows that can lead to wasted energy. Your employees or customers leaving doors and windows open can lead to significant heat loss. As best practice having proper training and signage for staff and visitors should keep heat loss to minimum.

How Businesses Can Prepare for Winter

Now we’ve identified where you could be wasting/losing energy, here are some steps you can take to prepare for the winter months.

Check Building Insulation and Windows: Inspecting the insultation and windows of the premises should be a priority for businesses in preparation for winter. You can identify areas for improvement such as noticing a significant breeze from a window/door, or single-glazed windows if it is an old building. Investing in energy efficient windows and doors can provide benefits such as a more comfortable environment for employees, but it can also aid your attempts to keep costs low during the winter months.

Adjust Lighting and Heating: Using timers to align with your working schedule can be an exceptional way to keep your building heated only when it’s needed. Using sensors for lights can also help keep energy costs down by making energy use zonal.

Energy Saving Audit: Conduct regular energy audits, it’s recommended that this is done every 6 months, with most business conducting these just before summer and just before winter. This audit will help you pinpoint specific areas that will need improvement.

Service Machinery, Boilers, and Pipes: Ensure that all machinery, boilers, pipes and heating systems are serviced before winter to maintain efficiency and to avoid any unexpected breakdowns. Most boiler suppliers will recommend that you have service conducted once a year.

Invest in Smart Heating: Smart heating systems allow you to have precise control of temperature and heating schedules. This aids in avoiding overheating, heating empty spaces and heating outside of working hours. The in-house display will also give you real time data so you can see how much energy you are using in real time and make any adjustments accordingly.

Encourage Hybrid Working: If your business offers hybrid working, you can further reduce your energy usage, and boost team morale by encouraging teams to be in office on the same days and work from home on the same days. This not only encourages collaboration but could also play a major role in managing your businesses energy consumption.

Prepare for Closure or Peak Times Over Christmas: Plan for your businesses holiday closures and any peak periods over the festive season. Just a simple energy adjustment over this period can lead to significant savings and avoid wasting energy.

By taking some of the steps above, your business can not only reduce its energy costs but also contribute to a more sustainable future by conserving energy resources.

Winter presents unique challenges for businesses when it comes to energy efficiency. However, with careful planning and the implementation of energy-saving measures, companies can stay warm and productive while reducing energy consumption and costs. Preparing for winter isn’t just a matter of staying cosy; it’s also about making sound energy decisions that benefit both the bottom line and the environment.

Every winter poses unique challenges for business when it comes to energy efficiency. However, with the correct planning and implementation of energy efficient measures, businesses can stay warm and productive, whilst also reducing energy consumption and costs. The preparation for the winter isn’t just about staying warm and cost, its also about making savvy energy decisions that benefit both the businesses bottom line and the environment.

Here at Dyce Energy, we implement a range of energy efficient measures to ensure we are not only saving money but also doing our part for the environment. Our measures range from the most simple, keeping doors and windows shut where possible, to the more complex measures such as an annual energy audit and regular servicing of our heating systems.