Saving money and helping the planet: make it your business!

When it comes to reducing energy costs, the devil is often in the detail. This month, we’ll take a look at what's on the market: no names, but some actual products currently available for you to buy.

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Back in April, we blogged about things that many businesses can do to reduce their electricity bills.

 

It was, we admit, a bit of a wish list.

 

The biggest step to saving energy is changing your mindset – thinking outside the box about how your company uses electricity now, and the steps you and your colleagues can take towards electrical best practice. The April post is worth a read (we would say that!), and you can access it by clicking here.

 

When it comes to reducing energy costs, the devil is often in the detail. This month, we’ll take a look at what’s on the market: no names, but some actual products currently available for you to buy. They’ll help the planet and save you money, and Excel Electrical would be happy to supply and install them for you.

 

 

Timer switches

 

What type of timer switches would suit your business? Standard plug-in timers do what the name implies: you plug in the timer, attach the device – or devices – you want to control, and let the timer do the rest. But in most commercial or industrial settings, DIN rail-mounted timers are the way to go. A DIN rail-mounted switch is a more robust piece of kit, which can be used to conserve energy by turning on power only when it is needed. This prevents heaters or lights from being left on unnecessarily – overnight, for example. They are also used by manufacturers to manage autonomous machinery, and to control automatic barriers and doors.

 

You’ll also find integrated timer technology – light switches with built-in timers, separately timed heating control units, and so on. The list is long, if not quite endless, and getting them all to work together to meet the requirements of your workplace can be a headache. Excel Electrical will work with you to ensure that you choose the equipment that’s right for you, make sure that it’s installed correctly, and check that it works the way you need it to.

 

 

Using your sensors

 

As well as being key to the security of your premises, motion sensors can also be used to turn the lights and heating on (or off) depending on whether or not a particular space is occupied. There are two main types of motion sensors on the market.

 

PIR (Passive Infrared) sensors work by detecting the heat a person emits, in the form of infrared light. They are typically used outside a building, in security systems or automatic lighting applications. They can also be deployed indoors as part of a wider security, lighting, or heating system.

 

Photocells do the same job, but they detect light instead of heat. Using ambient light levels (whatever you determine those to be), photocells can be programmed to kick in whenever you need the lights on, and to turn the lights off when there’s sufficient natural light available.

 

Combined, these two technologies should ensure that your lighting and heating systems work only when and where your people need them to – and not where they don’t.

 

 

Thermostats

 

We all have them. You probably have one or two central thermostats in your home, and your radiators will usually have individual thermostats fitted. These help to control your heating, and cut down on unnecessary energy usage.

 

Controlling the heating systems in business premises is not so different, but usage patterns probably will be. And the more rooms, or zones, your premises has, the more thermostats you need.

 

You may, for instance, want your reception area kept at a constant (welcoming!) temperature during working hours. Ditto your work-spaces (communal or otherwise). But what about meeting rooms? Or the loos? Or the staff kitchen?

 

Thermostats linked to your computer network can be programmed to switch the heating on and off, reaching specified temperatures when (and only when) those rooms are in use. So, a staff member can book Meeting Room A, via your computerised scheduling system, for a 10am appointment, lasting an hour. The computer will tell the thermostat to start warming that room at 9.30am, and switch off again at 11am.

 

 

Optimise your voltage

 

Voltage optimisation is an energy-saving management system designed specifically to maximise energy efficiency in electrical equipment. Also called power-factor correction, it reduces the incoming supply voltage to the optimum level for your business machines and electrically-powered manufacturing plant. This helps reduce the energy consumed, cuts carbon emissions – and could shave between 12% and 15% off your electricity bill.

 

 

Getting smart

 

With ever-improving communications technology, pretty much all the gizmos listed here – and many others – can be controlled from your mobile phone … which is amazing and frightening in equal measure.

 

It’s comforting to know that you can turn things on and off remotely – but just because you can doesn’t mean you should.

 

This is where Excel Electrical comes in. Our experienced, qualified engineers will visit and survey your premises, advise on energy-saving products and systems to benefit your business, install them, and, most importantly, make sure they talk to each other. We ensure that your thermostats, timer switches, and other control systems are networked to provide your workplace with optimum energy-efficiency, day and night.

 

Yes, it’s nice to know that you have an ‘off’ button in your pocket, but with our help you’ll never have to use it!

 

 

Regular testing and energy-efficiency ratings

 

While we’re onsite we’d be happy to test your existing systems and equipment both for safety and energy efficiency. We’ll make recommendations as to what you should be looking to change or upgrade as a priority, and what can wait another year. We offer real-world recommendations that take account of the economic circumstances in which we find ourselves – and which affect us all.

 

 

Contact us

 

To upgrade your premises, and bring down your energy bills, give us a call on 01508 488007.

 

Excel Electrical: the power is in your hands.

 

 

 

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