Is Your Company Interested in Going Green? Now is the Time

Schneider Electric EcoXpert certification

As summer comes to an end, the weather will soon be getting colder and the sun will be setting earlier—thus your energy expenses are likely to peak. If your company has considered going green, the time is now!

The Schaffhouser Electric team has undergone the Schneider Electric EcoXpert training and certification program. This process has allowed our energy-conservation experts to identify key sources of energy mismanagement, and develop solutions that can not only minimize waste, but also cut down on energy expenses. According to Forbes, commercial, industrial and institutional buildings produce energy waste that adds up to an estimated $60 billion every year.

With today’s technology, energy expenses are a given, but there are several ways that Schaffhouser Electric can help your business keep the cost and waste to a minimum.

Our company has undergone the Schneider Electric ExoXpert training and certification program, which gives us valuable knowledge to identify energy mismanagement, as well as the skills to develop waste minimization and reduce overall energy expenses. By providing a custom business evaluation, Schaffhouser Electric can help your business cut costs and become more environmentally friendly.

Here are a few of our services that will become especially helpful as the fall and winter seasons approach:

Lighting and Lighting Controls: As the days become shorter, there is less natural light available, which often leads to an increase in electricity use. Unfortunately, lighting contributes to an enormous amount of energy waste in commercial settings. We have the expertise and know-how to establish a system that minimizes energy waste without cutting down on productivity.

Energy and Power Management Systems: In the cases of large corporations and industrial facilities, an assessment for an energy and power management system often provides significant insight as to where the most energy waste is stemming from. Energy and Power Management systems can significantly improve the amount of energy saved, while also providing savings in overall operational costs.

HVAC Controls: Many interior and exterior factors from a building can effect the operation of HVAC units. To maintain the comfort level of your office, Schaffhouser Electric offers HVAC control solutions, which can conveniently cut down on operating costs.

Schaffhouser Electric’s energy-conservation experts are trained to provide top-notch expertise when it comes to electricity efficiency, which will reduce the consumption and demand of energy, while also providing valuable financial savings. Interested in saving energy before the days get longer and colder? Give us a call!

Lighting Retrofit – The Best Way to Save Money on Electricity

Lighting Retrofit
Lighting Retrofit

Do you remember those initiatives about turning off the lights when you left a room? The idea was that when you switched off the lights, you were able to decrease energy consumption and save money.

Well–no surprise to us–it really works! And applying that logic to an office or industrial setting will greatly affect your bottom line.

Lighting can use between 30% and 50% of the energy in most commercial buildings. Convincing your employees to flip those switches can really add up on the savings.

You can also take it one step further with a custom Lighting Retrofit.

Benefits of a Lighting Retrofit

Changes to your lighting system are one of the most cost effective upgrades you can make. There are a few ways to DIY the process, but mapping out your changes with a professional lighting designer can maximize your efforts and increase your energy efficiency.

A professional lighting retrofit will update all or part of your electrical systems, bringing them up to today’s energy efficient gold standards.

You can save money on lighting in one of two ways: decrease wattage or decrease use time. A good lighting retrofit will do both, saving you money across the board.

Besides monthly energy reduction, retrofitting your lighting can also make you eligible for certain tax rebates and exemptions. Look into your local regulations to see how your tax bill can be lowered as well as your energy bill.

Finally, everyone loves an energy efficient company! With a professional lighting retrofit, you can wear your greenness as a badge of honor and attract certain clients who value that.

What’s Next?

During your retrofit, a Schaffhouser electrician will work with you to create a custom plan for your space. Among other things we will :

● Analyze and reduce the cost of overhead lighting
● Remove unnecessary lamps and ballasts
● Delamp, which is the process of testing the luminosity of your space and determining if it’s brighter than it needs to be, while still providing maximum safety and efficiency
● Replace T12 bulbs with T8 bulbs, which are narrower and more energy-efficient
● Analyze and reduce hours of operation using innovative controls
● Analyze and reduce costs of outdoor signage, exterior and parking garage lighting
● Analyze and reduce cost of holiday lighting

A Schaffhouser Lighting Retrofit is the fastest and most efficient way to decrease your energy costs. When you’re ready to save some money, give us a call at 615-325-8001.

10 Ways To Save On Energy In Your Home This Winter

Winter Energy Saving
Save on Energy This Winter

Here in middle Tennessee, we’re lucky to have mild winters, without the bitter temperatures you find up north.

It still gets cold here, though, and with fall in full swing, now’s the time to think about prepping your home or apartment for winter. Simple fixes can help you save big on your energy bill in the cold months. Here are our top 10 tips:

1. Weather strips your doors and windows.

We all know there are cracks around the doors and windows of our homes, but how big is too big? If you can slip a piece of paper through the crack, you are losing too much precious heat to the elements. Add weather stripping or door sweeps to keep that expensive hot air in your home.

2. Turn down the heat when you don’t need it.

Most families now spend a significant portion of the day out of the house. Turn down the thermostat when you’re not home to keep costs down. You can also turn down the temperature at night and add warmer sheets and blankets to your beds. Of course, getting up in the morning could be that much more difficult!

3. Use those fans!

Fans aren’t just for summer. Locate the small black switch on the side of your ceiling fan and give it a little flick. Fans that run clockwise push heat down, keeping it in the rooms instead of floating along the ceiling.

4. Only heat the main rooms.

Do you have guest rooms or hobby rooms you don’t use much? Close the vents and shut the doors to those rooms so that you can funnel heat to the rooms you use more often.

5. Consider a space heater.

Central heat and air isn’t the only way to go. Consider turning down your thermostat and using space heaters to heat the rooms you use the most. This can save you significant money, especially if certain rooms heat faster than others.

6. Plug in the humidifier.

Artificial heat makes the air in your home very dry. A humidifier will add moisture to the air, making it feel warmer than normal. Moist air will also keep your skin and sinuses from drying out, which will only make the winter that much more enjoyable.

7. Keep your furnace clean.

As always, basic maintenance will go a long way to increasing energy saving. Clean your furnace and check the filters regularly. Replace filters as necessary and make sure all the vents are unblocked to keep maximum heat flowing through your home.

8. Unplug

Leaky doors and windows aren’t the only energy thieves in your home. Year round, make sure you’re unplugging TVs, computers, and gaming systems when not in use. Even when electronics are off, they pull energy from the outlets, increasing your energy bill every month.

9. Wash in cold water.

If you don’t already, wash your clothes in cold water. Heating water takes a lot of energy, and washing your clothes in cold water will cut down on it significantly.

10. Use LED holiday lights.

LED lights use about 75% less energy and last 25% longer than traditional lights. They’re also less breakable and therefore safer than incandescent. Remember to unplug them when they aren’t in use!

4 Changes Your Business Should Make to Save On Energy Costs

Now that summer is upon us, it’s a good time for small businesses to rethink their energy needs. With temperatures down South reaching into the 100s, things like air conditioning can skyrocket your energy bill.

Luckily, there are a few things you can do to curb those costs.

Install Motion Detecting Lights

For years the most common energy-saving device has been to turn off the lights when you leave a room.
Save On Energy Costs
But, let’s be honest, no one remembers to do that!

In an office, it can be even worse. You want your employees focused on their work, not how much flipping the switch will save on your electric bill.

Motion detecting lights are the perfect solution. These lights will turn themselves off when no one is in the room, eliminating the need for everyone to remember. They work best for conference rooms and bathrooms, which are seldom used and can sit fully lit for days without anyone noticing.

Switch Up Your Other Lights

Harsh overhead fluorescent lights not only cost more to use, they also contribute to headaches and fatigue.

Do yourself and your employees a favor by switching up the lighting around the office. Try a variety of lamps around the office. Open the curtains and let in natural light.

Take some time to play with the light levels to ensure everyone’s comfort. There’s a balance between too much and too little light, and you want to find what works best for your company.

Turn Off The Screen

Everyone loves a good screensaver, but the truth is they take the same amount of energy as anything else on the screen.

Instead of screensavers, instruct employees to turn off the monitor or put it in sleep mode when they leave. This simple solution, spread across your whole company, will save a lot in energy costs.

While you’re at it, consider unplugging all devices when everyone leaves for the day. Plugged in devices still use energy, but simply switching off the power strip can reduce the amount used.

Just Go Home

This suggestion might sound crazy, but hear us out.

If employees are allowed to work from home, your in-office energy costs will obviously be lower. Many businesses enact a “summer schedule,” allowing employees half or whole days off on Fridays.

Thanks to services like Google Hangouts, employees can still communicate throughout the day and stay productive. Or, if you allow employees to work a few more hours on other days and take Fridays off, you’ll be popular as well as energy-efficient!

Schaffhouser Electric can help. Contact Schaffhouser Electric today!

Energy Saving Tips For Summer

If you’re like most of the population, you’re wondering how to maximize comfort and minimize cost in the sweltering sun of the Nashville summer. Though middle Tennessee’s summer may start mercifully late after a mild spring, there is little respite from the soaring temperatures once summer is thoroughly underway.  The old-fashioned methods of self-cooling like walking around naked and wrapping a frozen towel around your head are only appropriate in certain contexts; unfortunately, most of us aren’t in the position to avail ourselves of those cheap and easy means of heat relief. Relying on central AC doesn’t condemn you automatically to an expensive slew of energy bills, though. There is a plethora of convenient ways in which you can minimize your expenditures without sprouting embarrassing sweat stains as soon as you wake up.

Saving-EnergyOne good place to start is the kitchen; though it may not be your intuitive first guess, the kitchen is the site of many small decisions that can have a big impact on your energy bill’s bottom line. For example, choosing to cook your meals in the microwave rather than on the stove top requires only 1/3 as much energy, thus saving you a pretty penny without much difference in result. Another counter intuitive means of energy saving is using your dishwasher rather than putting in the sweat equity of washing the dishes yourself. You actually save water with a one-time wash for all the dishes at once compared to an individual manual wash. As long as you let them air dry, you’re coming out in the black. Finally, the fridge operates on a lower energy consumption level when it’s fuller, because it does less work to return to its equilibrium temperature after being opened when there is less room for warm air to enter.

A second convenient site for energy saving in summertime is the air conditioning system itself. Setting the thermostat to an ideal target range of 78 degrees when you’re in the house and relying on it, and then turning it up to 85 degrees when the house is empty, can keep you in the range that is both comfortable and affordable. Paying attention the air conditioner filters as well can ensure that the system is operating as efficiently as possible without wasting energy pushing past debris that has accumulated. Speaking of filters, checking the filters in your washing machine and swimming pool (if you have one) are two more easy ways to make sure you’re trimming unnecessary costs and saving all your money for the pure cost of temperate comfort. Best of luck, and remember, a glass of lemonade goes a long way!