Cost-Cutting Tips to Help Small Businesses Save Energy (and Money)

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For small businesses, every penny counts. Even while you’re building your business and boosting revenue, it’s equally important to save money and cut costs — it all impacts your bottom line.

At TXU Energy, we know a monthly electricity bill can be a significant expense for a small business. Saving energy can save you money too, and we have plenty of ideas to help you accomplish both goals.

If You Run a Home-Based Small Businesses

Working from home can save your business money on rent and other expenses. You can save additional costs by controlling energy consumption in your home office:

  • Always power down electronic items like PCs, printers and copiers at the end of every day. Consider using a power strip – not only will it protect sensitive electronics from power surges, it will eliminate energy-sapping phantom loads and energy vampires, a hidden electricity cost most of us never realize.
  • Equip your home office with a ceiling fan. It can help cool the room in the summer more cheaply than bumping up the A/C, and in winter, it can push warmer air down from the ceiling, making your furnace operate more efficiently.
  • Rather than lighting the whole room with overhead lights, use task-oriented lighting, outfitted with energy-efficient CFL or LED bulbs, to focus light where you need it most.

If You Rent an Office

Ideally, you should consider the energy efficiency of an office space before you sign the lease. If that’s not possible, or if you’re already locked into a tenancy agreement, you can still take some steps to save energy, including:

  • Powering-down all electronics daily.
  • Contacting your electricity provider and discussing your usage patterns to ensure you’re getting the best rate and plan for your needs.
  • Consider investing in occupancy sensors that turn off lights when no one is in the room. They’re relatively inexpensive, can be taken with you when you end a lease, and can cut lighting costs by up to 40 percent.

If You Own a Building

If you own the building your small business occupies, you have even more opportunities to save energy.

  • Use programmable thermostats to manage heating and cooling use when the office is unoccupied.
  • Upgrade lighting throughout your facility to replace incandescent bulbs with high-efficiency CFLs and LEDs.
  • Replace an HVAC system that’s aged 10 years or more, or keep your existing system well-maintained to maximize efficiency.
  • Use weather stripping and caulking to seal air leaks to reduce air exchange.
  • Rely on natural light as much as possible by opening blinds and shades in winter. Close blinds and shades in summer to block out hot sunlight.