When you're running a warehouse, you're always cognizant of your bottom line and looking for ways to improve it. One of the best ways to do so is by reducing something that's likely to be among your biggest monthly expenses: energy bills.
With that in mind, there are many ways you can address your facility's power consumption with projects big and small to ensure an ongoing commitment to keeping costs down. Below are six to consider:
1) Shut things off when they're not being used
Instituting a company-wide policy of energy reduction starts with ensuring every employee powers down anything that uses electricity when it isn't needed, according to Shipley Energy. That includes everything from simply turning off the lights in an empty room to shutting down heavy machinery when it's not being used. While the individual gains from such practices may be small, they can collectively add up to save quite a bit over the space of a month.
2) Improve your HVAC
Of course, a bigger energy drain than just about anything else in the warehouse is the cooling system, which may need to be employed even in the spring and fall to keep the facility comfortable, Shipley Energy noted. To that end, it's a good idea for warehouse executives to keep their HVAC systems well maintained. In addition, investing in a tune-up initially, or replacing older components could also be crucial to reducing consumption.
3) Change the roofing
Another issue with the HVAC system is many warehouse roofs absorb a lot of heat in summer, making the A/C work that much harder to keep things cool, according to Remax Products. Installing reflective paneling or starting a rooftop garden to deflect or soak up up some of that sunlight before it reaches the roof is a good idea.
4) Put in skylights
Putting a few windows into your ceiling can be a great move in addition to changing the roofing because it lets more light into the facility, Remax Products noted. While there will be some heat absorption in the summer that your new or improved HVAC system will have to counteract, a few skylights will also trap sunlight in the winter, reducing your heating costs at that time.
5) Switch to LED for all light fixtures
While this will require some relatively small initial startup costs, the extent to which you can save money with LEDs can't be overstated, according to Supply Chain Dive. They currently cost roughly the same as traditional lighting, but LEDs last longer and consume far less energy, paying for themselves many times over in the years before they have to be replaced. In addition, their luminosity is often greater than incandescent bulbs, brightening up shop floors and thus potentially reducing workplace accidents.
6) Install solar panels
This is obviously a far more expensive option but, like LEDs, it usually pays for itself in the end, Supply Chain Dive advised. Looking into even basic solar panel installation could help your facility cut consumption significantly, and government grants or rebate programs might help you pay for it.