money saving tips
UK organisations could save some £1.8bn through the adoption of energy efficiency measures.
Aside from saving money, energy efficient organisations also demonstrate a responsible attitude towards the environment and society.
By reducing energy use – as well as switching to energy from renewable sources – you are helping to cut carbon dioxide emissions.
- The Gershon Review said that efficiency is about enhancing value for money. Efficiency gains are achieved through reforms that involve ‘Doing the same for less or more for the same’
- Minor adjustments to energy and water usage can make significant changes to efficiency
- Benchmarking your energy and water usage against national benchmarks will give a good indication of how your sites are over-consuming
- Ensure that you are on the optimum tariffs from your suppliers for water and energy
Find out how you can save money and be more water and energy efficient by selecting a heading below.
Water saving tips
- Use a managed bureau service for bill validation and water usage monitoring and reporting
- Monitor the water meter – if there’s a night time flow, when no-one is around, there could be a leak or a tap or valve left on
- Fit water saving devices to water consuming assets
- Monitor for water leakage – and repair leaks promptly. A dripping tap can waste enough water to fill half a bath.
- Harvest rainwater and use for toilet flushing and irrigation
- Utilise grey water for non-contact use such as toilet flushing, washing machines and irrigation
- Drill a borehole, if feasible, for a sustainable water supply
- Don’t flush cotton wool and tissues. Throwing them in the bin will cut down on the amount of water that is wasted by every flush
- Burst water pipes can cause serious damage to your organisation and your water bill as well as waste water. So make sure that your water pipes and external taps are lagged in time for the cold winter months. Also check where your main stop valve is and make sure that you can turn it on and off. If ever a pipe bursts, you’ll know how to cut off the flow
- Between 70% and 75% of the earth’s surface is covered with water. Less than 1% is accessible for human use.
- The overall amount of water on earth has remained the same for over two billion years and will do for many years to come.
- The average person uses over 150 litres of water per day. Flushing the toilet takes 30% of this water.
- It takes 140 litres of water to make one cup of tea and over 100 litres of water to make one glass of wine.
- Over 3 million people die each year from water-related disease. Over 800 million lack access to safe water.
- People taking a five-minute shower use more water than the a person living in a developing country slum in a whole day.
- 30% of treated mains water is used to flush toilets – a properly installed rainwater collection system could save all this water.
- A leaky tap in the office toilets or canteen kitchen can waste 60 litres an hour (5mm stream) or nearly half your daily usage.
- Rainwater Harvesting is already common practice in mainland Europe – about 100,000 systems were installed last year.
- If half of the UK saved rainwater by Rainwater Harvesting, we would save over 750 million m3 of treated water a year.
- Newer boilers are more energy efficient. Replacing an old boiler with a new condensing one could save up to 30% of the fuel burnt
- Downsize/rightsize your boiler (choosing a size aligned to your needs). This could lead to energy savings
- Install an optimiser or compensator to make sure temperature and operation duration are minimised /appropriate
- Use flue gas analysis to determine efficiency
- Rectify any water or steam leaks promptly
- In multiple boiler installations, install a sequencing control device
- Service gas boilers once per year, to ensure operation at optimum efficiency (oil and solid fuel boilers more frequently)
- Rectify operation problems early to ensure optimum efficiency
- On steam boilers, maximise the amount of condensate returned to the boiler – to save on heat energy
- Position boilers close to heat demand site, where possible. Transmission losses are reduced with several smaller sites rather than a central boiler house
- Insulate boiler casings
- Insulate all hot water pipes, flanges and valves to prevent heat loss. This could save up to 10% of the fuel burnt
Space and water heating
- Set thermostats to desired temperature. For every 1°C of extra heat, your heating bill will increase by about 8%
- Replace old mechanical thermostats with new generation electronic versions, for greater accuracy
- Store hot water at no more than 65°C – suitable for catering and washing – to prevent problems with legionella and other bacteria
- Fit thermostatic radiator valves on all radiators, where feasible
- Consider installing a new condensing boiler. This could save around £330 per year
- Service and maintain the boiler at peak efficiency. This could save 25% of the energy consumed
- Turn off boilers in summer
- Fit insulation behind radiators on external walls
- Insulate hot water cylinders. This could save up to 50%
- Insulate hot water pipes, flanges and valves to prevent heat loss and cut hot water bills.
Combined heat and power
Simultaneous production of heat and power (usually electricity) in a single process is very cost-effective. ‘Waste’ heat, which is normally discarded when producing electricity, is recovered and utilised for heating. CHP is particularly efficient where there is a year-round demand for heating and/or cooling. Combining a CHP Plant with Absorption Chilling is particularly energy efficient.
Insulation and Draft Proofing
- Keep doors closed between heated and unheated areas – add a lobby, if possible
- Don’t heat unoccupied rooms
- Thermostatically control room temperatures – each °C can reduce your energy bill by approximately 8%
- Use draft excluder on outside doors and windows
Some lighting is more energy efficient than others. Light from different types of emitters have different levels of energy efficiency. Always choose the most efficient type of emitter for the application.
Note: the most efficient light emitters often have poor colour rendition and are not suitable for all applications. Use of high frequency fluorescent fittings is recommended for office and similar spaces.
- Ensure lighting is flexible and responsive to changing needs
- Check lighting levels are not too high. A 100 watt incandescent bulb burning continuously will cost circa £70 per year
- Turn off lights when not needed, installing occupancy sensors where practical
- Install time switches and light level sensors in areas with fixed hours of occupancy
- Label light switches for easy identification – and switch off lights when areas are not occupied
- Fit Automatic Lighting Controls. These can save 30% on lighting costs
- Replace incandescent bulbs with energy efficient bulbs
- Use task lighting instead of general lighting
- Fit smaller fluorescent bulbs – 26mm or smaller – rather than 38mm, giving an energy saving of 8%
- Fit sensor activated external security lights rather than ‘always on’
- Fit high frequency, lower wattage fluorescent fittings in place of standard fluorescent tubes. No flicker
- Flashing fluorescent tubes waste energy