There are many things you can do to help keep your energy bills down.
By making some small changes to how you use energy, you can save money and help the environment.
Regularly review your energy contract or energy bill to make sure your energy agreement is right for your business.
If you have been at your premises for more than 12 months and are on an energy retail offer (where you have accepted an existing contractual arrangement from your energy retailer, similar to the way you would for your household energy bills, as opposed to negotiating directly with your retailer).
For larger consumers, understanding the different types of energy contracts for businesses or using an energy broker can also help you get the best energy deal. Our business page has useful information on managing your energy.
Develop overnight and holiday shut down procedures to stop wasting energy and money. These procedures can be as simple as having the last person to leave turn off the lights and other equipment, or can be automated with a building management system or equipment timers.
Set computers and other equipment to automatically turn off at the end of the day. Appliances such as printers and photocopiers often can be set to ‘energy saving’ modes.
Installing simple timers on equipment such as boiling water taps can make sure they’re off overnight and still ready to use when you arrive at work.
Remind after-hours cleaners to turn off lights when they leave.
Set your thermostats to 18°C in winter and 23°C in summer.
Discourage the use of personal radiators and fans as these can impact the efficiency of centralised heating and cooling systems.
Check zoning of your air-conditioning system and make sure the zones don’t overlap .Shut off areas that don’t need to be air-conditioned.
Make sure air-conditioning systems are regularly cleaned and maintained.
Look at how you can keep the warm air in during winter and out during summer. This may include keeping doors shut, installing clear plastic strips or automatic doors as appropriate or ‘Rollfast’ doors for factories and warehouses.
Upgrading to high efficiency lighting can be one of the easiest ways to reduce your energy bill.
For example, replacing some types of warehouse lighting with LED lights can reduce your bills by up to $100 per lamp per year. For a warehouse with dozens of lamps the savings can add up quickly.
Incentives are available under the Victorian Energy Upgrades program.
Equipment will operate more efficiently if it is cleaned and serviced regularly. For example, refrigerated display cabinets have been found to use up to 10% more energy if not cleaned regularly.
Make sure sensors and timers are working as they are supposed to.
Set up a process to regularly check for leaks in compressed air and steam systems.
An energy assessment will identify potential energy efficiency improvements specific for your business, review pricing tariffs and suitable renewable energy options.
The Boosting Business Productivity energy assessment grants are open to businesses spending over $20,000 a year on energy.
Using solar energy can help your business to save on energy bills.
By using the solar electricity that you generate, you can avoid buying energy from your retailer. Additionally, solar hot water systems can also help you avoid gas fired water heater charges.
The Saving with Solar page has more information on solar, including feed-in-tariffs, incentives, installation, and energy companies.