A guide WITH THE BEST KNOW-HOW AND TIPS FOR Saving Energy In Your Business During The Cold Months

We at FAIRLING have the mission to connect brands and retailers from all around the world and to make the world of wholesale a better and more sustainable place.

In our How To & Tips guide on this blog we want to give you the best possible advice for your business so you are ready for takeoff with the most important tips and advice. Today’s advice will be all about helpful tips to save energy for your business during the cold months.

Saving Energy: More Important Than Ever

Did you know that you can save energy with compressed air? Or through small changes in the work processes of employees? That a heating system can still be optimized in most cases by fine-tuning? That there is cheaper light than that from energy-saving lamps?

Depending on the type of company, different amounts of energy can be saved in different places. The German Energy Agency has taken a closer look at the various savings opportunities and determined average values, broken down by the so-called cross-sectional technology.

The average values for energy savings in the company are a good indication to get a rough overview of the potentials in one’s own company. Of course, this can vary upwards or downwards depending on the type of company.

1. The Correct Lighting

The lighting of your store and production is one of the most important components to save energy. That’s why the German federal government has already recommended switching off shop window lighting and saving energy wherever possible.

The share of energy costs for lighting in trade, commerce and industry can be reduced by up to 70 percent.

In large rooms or halls and offices, there are legal requirements for lighting, so there is a lighting calculation basis according to DIN. Unfortunately, this DIN is already several years old: Therefore, it is hardly surprising that operating rooms are often poorly lit, even though there are several dozen neon tubes hanging under the ceiling. In addition, this DIN does not yet take into account energy efficiency in lighting.

The possibility of saving money on lighting through energy-efficient lighting and technical optimization is generally underestimated. There are simple reasons for this: Fluorescent tubes are already regarded as energy-saving lamps across the board, and lighting is also often “overlooked” as a cost factor. Nevertheless, a few tricks and relatively low investment costs can quickly save a few hundred to a thousand euros per year: Example of saving energy with lighting in the company.

The proportion of energy costs that a company spends on lighting varies greatly: although most companies require the same amount of light per square meter. But if the company also uses a lot of electricity for electrical machines, the “electricity money” for lighting is less of a factor. Nevertheless, more efficient lighting makes an immediate financial impact in any business.

What does it depend on how much energy a company can save on lighting? On the one hand, of course, it depends on the type of company: There are more lamps in a large industrial hall than in a store. On the other hand, general factors play a role:

  1. From the size of the room and the room height
  2. The luminaire itself: type of construction, reflector
  3. The luminous efficacy of the luminaire

While many of you are already doing this, others are worried about losing evening strollers as potential customers. Therefore, a compromise is to use LED lamps instead of energy-saving lamps or normal light bulbs. They can be used in the shop window, but also in the rest of your store.

It is also worth rethinking your lighting concept in view of the upcoming Christmas business. You can also replace many things with LEDs or even switch to solar-powered light chains.

2. Heating Correctly

The second biggest lever for saving energy in your business is heating. Every degree less saves a full six percent of energy. That’s why the temperature in your rooms should only be 19 degrees. You are selling locally? Don’t worry: your customers will still feel comfortable.

In order to reduce heating costs in a company by 30-50 percent, high investments are usually necessary. However, these investments often pay off after just five years.

Most heating systems in industry, commerce and trade do not operate optimally, and energy costs can be quickly reduced by quite simple optimization measures. However, these immediate measures do not maximize energy efficiency; a comprehensive heating system renovation can usually save a lot more money.

Since every company has different heating requirements, there are hardly any meaningful average values. However, a few points can be listed that clearly indicate excessive energy costs for a commercial or industrial heating system:

  • Heating with fuel oil or electricity
  • Boiler older than 7 years
  • Professional heating inspection is a long time ago
  • Heating heat by ventilation system
  • No buffer storage

For both the private and corporate sectors, experts repeatedly report that installed heating systems consume too much energy: Once installed, the heating system is hardly ever maintained or optimized. Yet, as with cars, it is perfectly possible to optimize an existing boiler and heating system circuit in a number of ways:

  • Retrofit automatic heating control and exhaust gas dampers
  • Annual inspection, cleaning and maintenance
  • Multi-boiler systems: decouple, install sequential control
  • Thermal insulation on the distribution system
  • Hydraulic balancing
  • Reduce flow temperature

Replacing a heating system can save several thousand euros in energy costs within a few years. There are now many innovative ways to significantly improve an industrial heating system. Here is a table with the most common measures:

Use excess heat Free heating support Infrastructure must be adapted For process heat or room air
Use solar thermal energy Cost-free heating Buffer tank necessary Main use: transitional period
Wood heating (log gasifier) Cheapest type of heating at all Manual Refilling Especially in densely wooded areas
Pellet heating Second cheapest type of heating Storage room for pellets necessary Prices remain stable
CHP (also micro CHP) Generates electricity on the side Relatively high purchase costs Runs on gas, biomass
Radiant panel radiator Optimal type of radiators for halls Relatively high purchase costs Can be combined with many types of heating

It’s  worth taking a look at your heating system: you should have it serviced, cleaned and hydraulically balanced regularly, ideally before the heating season. After all, a heavily contaminated boiler requires up to 20% more energy.

P.S.: In many cases, hydraulic balancing is subsidized. You can find more information here.

3. Doors closed – Open Business

To prevent the cold from outside from entering your store or business rooms and your heater from having to work twice as hard, you should keep your doors closed.

However, open doors can be more inviting to passersby and potential customers. To further attract walk-in customers to your store, there is a poster campaign from the German retailer’s climate protection campaign that you can use to welcome customers. (You can download it here)

But: You can also continue to draw attention to your open store with displays or chalk painting in front of your store.

4. The Correct Air Conditioning

Most ventilation systems can be 20-25 percent more energy efficient – saving a lot of money in the industrial and service sectors.

Industrial halls, hospitals, office buildings: ventilation systems are used in many production facilities and areas of activity to regulate the CO2 content, humidity and pollution of the air. However, most ventilation systems in existing buildings are not optimally energy-efficient, because due to a lack of control, outdated design or additional functions such as heating or cooling, they perform their service for more costs than necessary.

An ideal ventilation or air handling system ensures that the working and process conditions in a hall or building always remain ideal. The reality is often different: Employees complain about noisy fans or drafty workplaces, and in winter the system “pumps” cold air in and warm air out. All these disadvantages can certainly be eliminated, and as a side effect, 20 percent energy can be saved.

What does it depend on how much energy a company can save in ventilation?

On the one hand, of course, on the type of company: In a large industrial hall, the conditions are different from those in a store, for example. Secondly, general factors play a role:

  1. Age of the ventilation system
  2. Construction type of the pipe network
  3. Additional performance of the ventilation: heating, air conditioning

To save several thousand euros a year on energy costs in ventilation, everything must be very carefully examined and then changed.

Remodeling: Pays off quickly. Depending on the actual condition, the ventilation system can quickly require a complete renovation. This often entails considerable investment costs, but they can pay off quickly: Studies have shown that even higher investments pay for themselves within a few years. After that, the system saves money and offers significantly more comfort.

Advantages of a renovated ventilation system:

  • Lower electricity bill: 20-25% possible
  • Savings in air conditioning and heating costs
  • Better thermal comfort
  • Higher employee satisfaction
  • Less noise pollution
  • Better air quality

Absolutely! is the answer to the question of whether energy efficiency in a ventilation system is worthwhile. But not every measure is effective or even economical, because in the end it is always the existing conditions that are decisive.

5. The Right Timing

Lights, air conditioning and ventilation systems as well as all other devices do not have to run permanently. Especially in social and team rooms, a motion detector for these things is worthwhile.

In your salesroom, on the other hand, an interval control for the ventilation can be useful (e.g. 10 min. on, 20 min. off).

And: Small home gadgets also need a lot of energy. Therefore, remember to switch off all devices such as coffee machines, PCs, printers, power strips, etc. after closing time.

Even if there are times when wholesaling seems more difficult, it’s still important to be visible and tell the shops about your great products. Maybe you got some ideas from this article and found inspiration on how to make your ads on FAIRLING interesting.

If this was an old hat for you, you are probably searching for some resellers for your products. We would love to help you find those. Just book a free demo call and we will be very happy to talk with you about your possibilities or answer your questions!

You are a unique brand and want to learn more about wholesale and reach out to potential shops? 

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