With COVID-19 pandemic still hovering over us, it is prudent to take preventive measures that minimize the spread of transmission of the disease. But sometimes even with the best of prevention tactics, there can be an outbreak of COVID-19 in your building or facility. This guideline offers to shed light on what to do after COVID-19 has been confirmed in your building. This entails notifying people who have been in close contact to the person who tested positive, reporting to Toronto Public Health or concerned Public Health authority of the outbreak, cleaning and disinfecting the premises, improving air quality and taking steps to minimize the spread of the coronavirus.
How is COVID-19 transmitted?
COVID-19 is transmitted from one person to another most commonly via respiratory droplets from coughing, sneezing, talking, or laughing during close contact of say within 2 meters. COVID-19 can be spread by infected individuals who have mild symptoms or no symptoms, i.e. asymptomatic. COVID-19 can also be transmitted through surface contact which is touching something that has the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes.
Factors that increase risk of COVID-19 transmission include:
- Close contact
- Closed indoor spaces
- High traffic places
- Prolonged exposure
- Forceful exhalation
What to do once you get a report of someone with COVID-19 in the building?
Making informed decisions and notifying appropriate authority and contacts
When someone in your facility reports to you that they have tested COVID-19 positive, ensure that the individual’s identity remains protected. Have a system in place to handle the situation. For instance, dedicate a team or a HR member to interview the person by phone and ask them basic questions such as:
- When was the last time he or she was in the building?
- What was the first day of their symptoms?
- Were they diagnosed of COVID-19 through any test, if so what type?
- Find out names of people in your facility with whom they have been in close contact.
Ensure that the individual follows isolation guidelines to minimize the risk of transmission. Individuals should stay home even if the symptoms are mild or have only one symptom. They should only return to the workplace after isolation criteria have been met and have been in consultation with a healthcare provider. As per updated WHO guidelines, the isolation criteria is:
For symptomatic patients: 10 days after symptom onset, plus at least 3 additional days without symptoms, including without fever and without respiratory symptoms.
For asymptomatic cases: 10 days after positive test for COVID-19
When someone in your building has tested COVID-19, it is mandatory for you to notify people who have been in close contact with the individual that they were exposed to someone with COVID-19, while protecting the identity of the individual. You should have a quick method of notifying the contacts, for example through an email.
If you reside in Toronto, then Toronto Public Health also mandates you to notify them of two or more COVID-19 cases within a 14-day interval at your workplace premises.
- In addition, you should also have a designated person who can be contacted for any information or for implementing any measures by Toronto Public Health to minimize health risk of the community.
- Have access to accurate and updated contact information for all workers that can be given to Toronto Public Health within 24 hours of request for contact tracing requirements for COVID19.
- Notify the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Training, and Skills Development and other relevant government authorities in case of two or more COVID-19 cases within a 14-day interval in your building or facility.
- Cooperate with infection prevention and control personnel from Toronto Public Health, such as permitting entry into the building for assessment and preventive measures.
You may also have to consider closing down the building or facility. It will depend on multiple factors, such as how fast disinfection or cleaning can occur, the number of employees affected, and whether you deal with people who are at high risk of COVID-19 such as the senior population.
Cleaning and Disinfection
Employers or business owners should follow established processes for cleaning and disinfecting the building after someone in the facility has tested positive for COVID-19.
For instance, high-touch surfaces such as desks, phones, keypads, doorknobs, door handles, handrails, light switches, chairs, credit/debit machine, elevator buttons and so on should be thoroughly cleaned. Cleaning and disinfection should also be carried out in shared spaces within the building premises such as kitchen and washrooms.
Coronaviruses are said to be one of the easiest types of viruses that can be killed with an effective disinfectant. Usually cleaning with soap and water reduces germs on surfaces which plays a critical role in reducing the risk of spreading infection. When someone in your building has tested positive, it is imperative to thoroughly clean and disinfect the premises as well as high-touch surfaces.
Coronaviruses can be terminated effectively with an approved disinfectant solution. However, those solutions need to be used properly as stated on the label in order for the solution to be effective. For example, if a solution states that a wet contact time of 60 seconds is required the entire area needs to be evenly treated and left for 60 seconds prior to wiping. If not, the surfaces will not be properly disinfected. Surfaces such as computers, electronics, paperwork, carpets area generally left untreated unless disinfection services are completed by a certified infection control expert. In the event of a COVID-19 outbreak, it is imperative that a complete decontamination of the environment to mitigate the risk of transmission.
Air Quality and COVID-19
Since COVID-19 has been revealed to be an air-borne virus, indoor air quality needs to be monitored and improved in order to reduce the risk of transmission. Closed spaces with a large number of occupants and poor ventilation are high risk factors for COVID-19 transmission. Moreover, the virus can linger through the HVAC system when it recirculates into the building. This is why it is important to have the HVAC system draw air from outside and have clean air filters.
In addition to having an efficient HVAC system checked and maintained by a professional, it is also important to disinfect the HVAC system once someone has been infected with COVID-19 in the building before reopening. A-TECH Engineering – a leading HVAC contractor – provides a unique HVAC system cleaning process that can kill germs and microbes including COVID-19 via trusted partners. In addition, A-TECH Engineering also has tie-ups with one of the top disinfection companies in Toronto currently being used in healthcare facilities including ambulances where the entire disinfection process can be done in as quickly as 15 minutes, whereas before it used to take 4-5 hours.
Workplace safety and minimizing risk of COVID-19
- Prevention is better than cure. To ensure a safe workplace environment during this pandemic, as an employer or business owner, make sure your building is equipped with easily accessible hand sanitizer and hand wash at multiple points.
- Premises and high touch areas are cleaned and disinfected frequently.
- There is scope of physical distance of at least 2 meters. Implement physical barriers like plexiglass where necessary.
- Ensure air quality monitoring or HVAC monitoring to ensure the system is running efficiently.
- Automate building systems where possible to minimize surface touching such as lights, doors and so on.
During this difficult time, it falls on all of us to adjust to the new normal and do everything we can to reduce the spread or transmission of COVID-19. As an employer or business owner, ensuring a safe building or facility can not only save lives but also establish goodwill among your staff and clients. Connect with an A-TECH Engineering team member to ensure the safety of your building and occupants today.
In today’s modern world, corporations and businesses – whether small or big – are increasingly employing sustainable practices that are environmentally friendly as well as beneficial for the company in more than just improving the bottom line. Investing in energy management services helps you gain better control of your facilities energy consumption, identify energy waste, reduce energy cost and at the same time reduce the carbon footprint. Let’s delve deeper into what energy management entails, what its benefits are and how it works for your business.
What are energy management services?
Energy management services basically refer to any services that help companies monitor, control, and optimize the energy consumption. With a proper energy management system installed, you can reduce energy waste, increase profitability, and decrease the carbon footprint. It not only benefits you financially but also helps in saving the environment and combat the effects of climate changes.
You might think these are of high cost and can be implemented by only large, well-established companies. However, in reality any type of business – whether big or small can benefit from a range of energy management services. These can include building automation system, building analytics, HVAC monitoring, HVAC optimization, retrofitting, utility metering and so on.
Utilizing energy management services results in reduced energy consumption and facility management costs as well increased system efficiency. Since each business or organization is unique, energy management services also tend to be varying depending on many factors. For instance, energy management is extremely pertinent when it comes to commercial property management. This is because the sector incorporates several energy-related resources, such as a large inventory of office buildings and in addition, a well-defined approach to energy management is important to the buyers, occupants and stakeholders.
Investing in energy management services can help you resolve issues with several aspects of your business or facility management including efficiency of old equipment, lack of energy management strategy, reducing high utility bills, improving HVAC performance and indoor air quality, besides several others.
Benefits for your business
With energy management services, your organization can enjoy a plethora of benefits such as:
- You can easily monitor and compare the energy performance of multiple facilities in your portfolio, identify cost improvement opportunities, and develop better energy management strategies for properties that are inefficient.
- You will be promoting energy-efficient attitudes and actions in the workplace by setting benchmark of utility targets and motivating employees, peers to become energy saving themselves.
- You will also have a clear understanding of energy costs and can easily track the information anywhere remotely.
- It will also help you make improved decisions with the aid of predictive technology and accurate energy analytics data.
- You can detect utility related billing errors and ensure tenants are charged fairly for utility consumption.
How energy management services work for your business?
Since energy management services cover a wide umbrella of energy solutions, it is important to identify what services are relevant to your business as each will have differing needs, and therefore require customized energy solutions for your business.
In the first step, usually your business will have to go through an initial assessment where you will receive various findings in your existing system, a list of measures you can take to better monitor and control your systems. In addition, you will get generalized forecasts related to costs, available incentives, or rebates as well as predicted energy saving. This will provide you with adequate information of what the energy management services can do for you and help you decide if you want to proceed further to receive a detailed assessment. Through this rigorous energy audit, you will get a clear picture of existing site conditions, building systems, current operating parameters, what systems are lacking in efficiency and so on. This will help you decide what energy management services are best suited for you and define the scope of work.
Based on the assessment and your chosen prioritized energy management strategies, a final agreement will be drawn including pricing quotes and detailed scope of work with the energy management service company.
Some energy management services provider such as A-TECH Engineering Ltd. also allow investors for project funding from reputable and qualified lenders with low interest rates, special terms and conditions, rebates, grants and so on. They are experienced partners who are willing to serve the community for reducing carbon emissions and encouraging green buildings. It is important for you to choose the right project funding that best fits your budget and fulfills your energy management goals.
During the implementation stage, based on your energy conservation goals, changes, new additions like system, software, apps will be integrated into your existing systems with minimal downtime. After everything has been integrated, you will soon start to receive real-time updates of building system performance through IoT solutions and gain better control over your automated building system.
Progressive and energy driven businesses today are increasingly leaning towards energy management services and with the plethora of benefits they offer, it is easy to rationalize why. Energy management services not only allow you to manage resources better and reduce waste but also reduces environmental impact. This results in an energy saving building with increased sustainability and contributes to your corporate social responsibility as well.
If you are tired of high utility bills, inefficient systems, regular breakdowns that are costing your business, connect with A-TECH Engineering – an energy company based in Toronto serving major cities all across Canada and find customized energy management services that best fits your energy management goals.
If you run a business or manage a commercial building, then you must be aware of the various building systems that are required to be functional in order for the business to run smoothly. On top of that most commercial buildings tend to be high energy consumers thus putting a dent on your net profitability. As a business owner or commercial property manager, you do not have to think out-of-the-box on how to lower costs as you know all too well how energy consumption costs reduce your bottom line. There are many steps you can take to transform your commercial space into an energy saving building. Let’s delve deeper into some of these:
Energy saving building
These days, the entire world is talking about conserving energy and whether you acknowledge it or not, conserving energy is not simply about making the world a better and greener place, the concept is also tied to enhancing efficiency and improving building performance. An energy saving building is any building that has been designed, constructed or upgraded in a way that it is able to get the maximum work out of energy provided to them while minimizing the loss of energy. Energy saving building also works by reducing energy demand of the building system, for example- by turning off power when not in use or in areas not required.
How to make your commercial building energy efficient and reduce costs?
Invest in energy management system – Energy management system offers valuable data and insights to track, monitor and regulate energy use in your commercial building and enhance building performance while reducing costs. You can invest in building data analytics that provide you with relevant and simplified data of energy use and take control.
An energy management system can be used to detect faults in your building system, provide preventive maintenance and thereby reduce maintenance costs and damage to building.
HVAC Controls and Optimization
Perhaps the most energy draining system of your building is the HVAC system. For a commercial building, HVAC system can account for up to 60% of energy consumption. Hence, it is only rationale as a business owner that you pay special attention to HVAC system efficiency.
Apart from having your HVAC system annually maintained by a professional, installing an efficient Building Automation System for your commercial HVAC can significantly improve life cycle of HVAC, provide increased HVAC efficiency while reducing your energy costs.
Building Automation and Controls allow commercial buildings of any size or industry to optimize their central HVAC system- even multiple HVAC systems can be monitored and controlled from a single interface seamlessly from anywhere through IoT. This results in fewer maintenance calls, proactive servicing, and reduced bottom line.
Retrofitting old HVAC system
Sometimes your HVAC system may be too outdated to perform efficiently and if you are not ready to change your old HVAC system, you can try and see retrofitting the old HVAC system. This is simply an upgradation where you can change parts of your old HVAC such as adding a new compressor, ventilation control, condenser fan control and so on to improve HVAC system performance, minimize energy use and reduce utility bill. Retrofitting HVAC system can save you up to 30% energy costs.
Invest in newer energy-rated appliances and equipment
An energy saving building does not only mean it is designed to be an energy efficient building. Today’s energy saving buildings run on newer, better appliances and machines that use less energy and are environmentally friendly. For example, think of simple things in your commercial building that you have not changed in a few years – it could be a refrigerator, oven, air-conditioning system, or HVAC system. Modern equipment are energy rated so that they consume less energy and reduce carbon footprint.
Improve thermal insulation
Poor insulation in a commercial building can also account for significant energy loss. You can retrofit your old building to add insulating layers that allow for lower heat loss. If retrofitting the entire building is not possible, you can take small steps like changing window glasses that are better insulators such as double or triple pane windows, sealing gaps and entryways or even checking vents, HVAC ducts, pipes and so on.
Choose smart building technology
Commercial buildings today have a lot of opportunity to improve energy use by investing in smart building technology. Through this, building managers and owners can view real-time update of energy use in building, take better control and take measures that minimize energy use. For example, smart buildings utilize various sensors to power building automation.
Sensor and controllers provide remote and real-time monitoring of various building systems such as HVAC system, lighting, security, electrical and so on via internet of things. Smart building controls remove the scope of human forgetfulness of failing to turn off lighting and HVAC settings, thereby reducing energy costs. There is also HVAC monitoring app that allows you to track, monitor and control your HVAC system remotely from anywhere.
Invest in LED Lighting
If your commercial building is still using traditional lighting, then you are simply throwing money out the window without even realizing it. While changing the entire lighting of your building may feel superfluous to you, investing in LED lighting can save you money as they are much more sustainable, energy efficient as well as environmentally friendly.
Empower your community
Investing in latest technology will not automatically solve the problem of high energy bills if the occupants or users of the building are not aware. Educate and empower your staff and residents on how to manage the building system in an energy efficient way, such as using equipment properly and so on.
If you have an energy saving building for your commercial space, it will not only reduce energy cost but also result in improved comfort, and better functionality.
A-TECH Engineering Ltd. is a leading building automation and controls provider based in Toronto and other major cities across Canada who can help you transform your commercial property into a functional, comfortable and energy saving building. Contact our team member today to learn more.
When it comes to optimizing your business there are certainly many things you need to consider. If you are looking for a competitive edge for your business, lowering cost is something that you absolutely cannot afford to overlook. Many organizations and businesses look for various ways to cut down costs without looking at some of the most obvious and easiest ones. One of the easiest ways you can reduce your expenses is take better control of your energy consumption and HVAC controls play a big role in that. In fact, heating, ventilating, and cooling (HVAC) accounts for almost 50 percent of a building’s total power usage. Hence it is only logical to look for ways to enhance building efficiency through HVAC controls and achieve energy savings.
HVAC controls have been around for a very long time and they give you complete control over ambient variables in your building system such as heating, ventilation, and cooling.
Through HVAC controls, we are not only talking about being able to control these three variables in your building or office environment but also, they allow easy access to automated features that make the job of running your building in a smooth and efficient manner. This results in reduced cost, improved efficiency, and a comfortable environment.
Some industries became acquainted with HVAC controls a lot earlier than others out of necessity. For instance, industrial producers know very well that their machinery needs to operate within certain temperature thresholds, or they start to break down or underperform. Hence investing in efficient HVAC system is important to them.
On the other hand, if you are mainly focused on retail or customer service, you may not have yet considered this as a need as you may think you do not require it with as small business space or building size. However, if you are looking to minimize energy costs while ensuring comfort of occupants, HVAC controls is a must-have in today’s energy conscious era. Let us outline a few of the main reasons of why it is beneficial to have HVAC control system for your building.
Saving Energy Saves the World
Today’s world is one where environmental concerns are present at every level of analysis. Our society has become increasingly aware of its potential to either damage or preserve the natural balance. With ecological considerations at the front of our concerns, we find that from the highest tiers of government to the individual level, we are all doing our part to contribute to this effort.
Automated HVAC controls leverage the power of digital technology and high-quality sensors to provide real-time data that can be used in several beneficial ways. One of these is that you can know for sure that you are always spending the optimum amount of energy possible. No more and no less than what is needed will ever be spent to maintain the parameters that your business requires to function. There are applications like HVAC monitoring app through which you can monitor the data coming from sensors and make the necessary adjustments in real-time. You will always have complete control and can choose to set your desired parameters from anywhere with IoT. With HVAC controls, the system will do its work to ensure comfort and energy saving with minimal input.
Saving Energy Saves You a Lot of Money
Of course, saving the environment is important – after all we are part of the same ecosystem. However, you are also running a business. There is no way to work for a sustainable environment if your own business is not sustainable. That is one of the biggest reasons why you should consider acquiring automated building HVAC controls.
Energy bills can be very expensive depending on your needs, location as well as other factors. Our metrics show that we can help cut energy costs by as high as 30%, which can make a huge difference in the short, medium, and long term. In today’s highly competitive market, there is very little margin of error, no matter what your line of business is. So, if you can reduce almost a third of the cost of any aspect of your business, that is an opportunity you do not want to miss.
Although there are a few costs that are associated with installing this equipment if this is a first for you, the good news is that our services are designed to work with most of the main brands and models of equipment. That means that you are very likely to be able to keep most of your HVAC equipment and still take full advantage of what building automation system has to offer you.
You should also keep in mind that most of these are one-time expenses. Once you are set up you will not have to worry about special equipment or adapting existing installations anymore. Things will be up and running and will stay that way for as long as you need them to.
Leveraging Data Analytics for Increasing Efficiency
Do you find yourself wanting to know more about certain conditions in your working environment? If the answer is yes, then data analytics from automated HVAC controls system can empower you and your business with fast and reliable insights which you can use to better manage your building system. The data collected from HVAC monitoring app gives you alerts and notification in your chosen form and frequency so that you are always on top of your building automation system. You can utilize building analytics to make prompt and proactive decision and carry out preventive maintenance tasks to minimize service and repair costs.
Another benefit of automated HVAC controls is that the automation means you no longer require specially trained employees to deal with the data analytics and translate the information for your business. The technology will enable you to get exactly what you need from the system with minimum effort as everything is simplified and readily available.
Easy Access to Data with IoT solutions
In today’s smart technological era, our lives are completely dependent on our mobile devices. Like it or not that is the reality that we are living in right now. We use our phones, tablets, and portable computers for doing a lot of things, and controlling HVAC is no exception here. Nobody wants to have to work with specialized equipment when we have powerful computers right in our pockets. That is why all our services are built with connectivity in mind, and you will have no trouble at all to set the services in your device of choice. You will have access to all the data that the equipment provides at your fingertips no matter where you are.
With COVID-19 pandemic, we have all adapted to the new normal to continue doing our jobs or carrying out business in new and innovative ways. There are several challenges and requirements to be fulfilled daily and many of these seem to be here to stay for as long as COVID-19 will be around. And with the recent news of COVID-19 being an air-borne disease, it is now even more important to take preventive steps to ensure occupant safety of the building. At A-TECH Engineering – which is a leading HVAC controls contractor, we are offering free COVID-19 assessment of your site to show our solidarity to the local community during this difficult time.
HVAC controls can range from a great-to-have feature to absolute necessity depending on your business. However, if you are looking to optimize your business resources, improve efficiency and save energy costs, automated HVAC system is something you should seriously consider for your business no matter which industry you belong to. Contact our team of experts at A-TECH Engineering for more info on the energy saving potential of smart HVAC system that translates into actual savings for your business.
Helpful energy saving checklist for facility managers to reduce energy costs and increase efficiency
Facility managers have the essential task to ensure that everything in the building runs smoothly as well as efficiently for the occupants all the time. Over time, the role of facility managers has broadened and includes making sure that the building is energy efficient as well. This results in occupants having a comfortable working environment while minimizing energy costs of the building.
As per EPA, 32% energy consumption and 19% greenhouse gas emission arise from buildings. As companies today work towards reducing energy waste, they are turning to facility managers who are greatly involved in improving the building condition. Facility managers are at an advantage to identify scope of improvement and take corrective actions to improvise energy efficiency of the building. In this article we take a look at steps facility managers can take to improve efficiency of the facility building and transform it into an energy saving building.
Inspect energy consuming equipment and employ regular maintenance
In order to maintain functionality, efficiency, and comfort of a facility building, it is imperative to consistently manage the energy-using equipment through routine check-ups along with preventive maintenance. When energy consuming equipment are left without any monitoring system or check ups, the equipment not only loses efficiency but can also be irrevocably damaged. Regular, consistent maintenance for equipment through a building automation system can help identify issues such as leaks, repairs, and replacements. Routine check-ups and maintenance can be held for boilers, chillers, fans, lighting system, computers, electronics, HVAC system and so on. In addition, data analytics can equip facility managers with valuable insights into performance measurement which can be utilized to improve the energy efficiency of the building.
Also, as a facility manager, you must take note of equipment that are obsolete, require frequent repairs and get rid of these. Replacing these with energy-rated machines will not only enhance performance but also bring down energy costs significantly.
Utilize submetering to accurately picture energy costs of the facility
When you are a facility manager, it is important that you know exactly how much energy the building is using, how much energy is being wasted, and identify areas of improvement to lower energy cost.
For this, you can look at trends in your utility bills and take note for any inaccurate meter readings and charges that do not make sense. You should also be aware of any controllable factors that can be leveraged to reduce energy consumption.
Also, using submetering in facility buildings is a great way to effectively control and use the resources in the building. Instead of using a single device to determine total energy use, facility management firms are increasingly switching to submeters in facilities to accurately monitor and manage utility costs. Submetering makes it relatively easier to see which areas of the facility consume high power and come up with alternative energy efficient solutions. It also allows precision data-collection methods that facilitate in identifying problems, scheduling corrective measures, and applying better energy saving solutions to improve overall energy efficiency of the building.
Use lighting and HVAC controls effectively in facility buildings
It is no doubt that lighting and HVAC systems account for a huge portion of the electricity bill. In order to cut down energy cost of your facility building, increasing efficiency of these systems can greatly reduce your building’s energy cost. For example, it is very likely for occupants to forget turning on and off these systems when not required, and as a result energy is being wasted. You can have motion sensor lighting that automatically turns on and off depending on the presence of users in the area. Installing efficient building automation system can help to reduce the cost of energy by automated daylight harvesting feature which allows detection of daylight and minimizes the use of artificial lighting in those periods. Nowadays there are many energy saving lights available in the market such as LED lighting, combining this with an automated lighting control system will surely have a beneficial effect on reducing energy costs of your facility.
Similarly, automated HVAC controls and smart thermostats can be utilized in your facility building to control HVAC system. As a facility manager, it is important that you monitor the thermostats and HVAC control settings so that occupants of the building are working in a comfortable condition. There are many automated systems available these days that give you access to these controls through Wi-Fi on your phone, making them easy to use.
Educate facility occupants about ways to reduce energy costs and properly use the facility
Only using an energy efficient machine and transforming the building into an energy saving one will not save money if occupants do not learn how to use it properly. As a facility manager, educate them through meetings, sessions and let them know the proper use of the equipment so that they run efficiently and minimize energy costs.
Get guaranteed 10% Energy Savings when you use A-TECH Engineering Energy Management Services for your facility.
With businesses and organizations becoming more energy conscious over the days, facility managers play an important role in tackling issues, identifying areas of improvement that can enhance building efficiency. A-TECH Engineering Ltd. – a leading building automation contractor in Toronto offers energy audit and energy management systems that can transform your facility building into an energy saving building, give better control over the building, reduce energy costs, and at the same time ensure comfort of the occupants. Contact us to get a quote and discuss the energy saving potential of your facility.
Are you tired of paying high bills for your car dealership? You can save over 40% by increasing energy efficiency of your building. Read on to find out how to improve energy efficiency of your car dealership and reduce energy costs.
Starting from early November 2020, electric bills in Ontario will increase by at least 2% as fixed pricing comes to an end. With COVID-19 pandemic still looming over us, it is no doubt that the surge will have a dual negative impact on businesses that are already affected – including car dealership businesses that typically consume more energy per square foot than conventional office buildings. As such, car dealership owners can greatly benefit from an energy management program that will not only reduce its carbon footprint but also reduce its utility bills. In this article, we will take a look at the cost effective areas in which car dealership can reduce use of energy such as heating, lighting, air compressors and so on, while at the same time maintaining functionality and comfort of the building.
Lighting – It is no secret that car dealerships tend to consume a lot of energy in the lighting department as the place needs to showcase the car in the best way possible. Most of the car dealerships that have been operational for a long time use outdated, energy inefficient bulbs that are not only poor in service but also need frequent replacement, thereby increasing overall cost.
Having a building automation system can greatly aid dealerships to effectively use lighting only when necessary thereby reducing extra costs. In addition, dealerships can also invest in energy efficient LED bulbs instead of being fixated on using age-old light bulbs that consume a lot of energy and give rise to a high electricity bill at the end of the month. This will surely result in improved energy efficiency of car dealership.
Heating– Another area car dealerships lose a lot of energy is the heating department. Having outdated heating system, leaving doors and windows open while heating or air-conditioning is on, outdated boiler heating controls are some of the many ways through which energy loss occurs, resulting in high utility costs. On average, 30% of car dealership energy costs are pertaining to heating.
One of the long term cost effective ways to reduce energy costs from heating is to have a smart building technology which controls its heating settings, automatic opening and closing of bay doors, smart thermostat and so on. A smart building knows when to turn the power on and off on its own so even if you have a forgetful mind, you are assured that at the end of the month you are not going to get a high bill because you simply forgot to turn off the power.
Air-compressors – Air-compressors also play an important role in dealerships and are another source of high energy consumption. To improve energy efficiency of your car dealership, it is essential to keep track of air compressor maintenance and performance. Often energy is lost due to leaks in air compressor, presence of condensate and moisture, pressure fluctuations, high source pressure and so on.
Having an energy management system in place ensures accurate assessment of air-compressors through techniques such as metering and measuring. This gives insight into air compressor performance as well as identify windows for improvement. It is also important to use energy rated products, for instance an energy rated air compressor will not only save money but also curb air pollution.
Most dealership owners do not want to partake in energy audit or energy management programs as they feel like these would be an additional and unnecessary cost. What is the need to fix something if it is not broken, right? However, when you are not changing or upgrading your system, you not only run into unforeseen problems but also incur additional cost in the long run. With a little bit of foresight and innovation, as a car dealership owner, you can save a lot of money if you are keen in making your dealership up-to-date and energy efficient. Having an ongoing energy audit and management system will equip your dealership with data, insight and control on how to reduce energy usage, find existing faults, and suggest preventive maintenance and repairs.
At A-TECH Engineering Ltd. – which is a building automation and energy company, we have a host of energy management and building automation systems that are geared to improving your dealership’s energy efficiency and reducing energy cost while ensuring quality, functionality and comfort of the building.