Increasing HVAC Efficiency in the Summer
In addition to energy concerns, workplace air quality influences employee performance. That being the case, business owners can take steps to decrease their energy consumption while increasing HVAC efficiency. Here’s how:
- Inspect and Change Filters. A dirty filter can decrease airflow to and from your air conditioning unit, which makes the unit work harder. Make sure to check the filters on a monthly basis and changed quarterly.
- Periodic System Checkups. Check the HVAC systems once per year, generally right before the start of the peak summer season. This will ensure that your system is operating at its most efficient, and will help to catch small issues before they manifest into larger problems.
- Sunlight and Temperature Control. If you’re lucky enough to have an office with north and south-facing windows, you’re in luck. These let in the most natural light with the least glare and almost no extra heat. Also, windows that face east and west should be shaded, as they can produce glare and let in the summer heat.
In 2014, 41% of total U.S. energy consumption was consumed in residential and commercial buildings, or about 40 quadrillion British thermal units.*
- Seal Off Leaks. Any cracks around doors and windows let out cooler air in the summer and warmer air in the winter. This causes your HVAC system to work harder and raises your power bill.
- Install a Programmable Thermostat. Programmable thermostats switch the HVAC system either on or off at pre-scheduled times. By programming the thermostat for set times of occupancy, you are ensuring that you’re not heating or cooling the space when it’s not occupied. This, in turn, can save you money on your energy bills.
- Install Motion Sensors. In addition to a programmable thermostat, motion sensors can be installed to switch the HVAC on when the building is occupied and to automatically switch it off (or raise the temperature) when the building is vacant.
- Conduct an Energy Audit. Energy audits can help you pinpoint air leaks, thermal leaks, and other energy inefficiencies. You can then take these recommendations and apply them to further increase your energy efficiency. In some cases federal and local governments will provide funds for energy audits, making them more affordable.
Overall, with an efficient HVAC system, you use less energy to control the building’s internal temperature. In addition to reducing your electric bill, an efficient HVAC system also controls humidity levels, which reduces bacteria and mold growth, and improves air quality.
Curious about how you can improve your business’ HVAC efficiency and reduce your power bill? Ready to schedule an energy audit? Contact us to get started!