Saving energy in your restaurant has a positive impact in two ways: it reduces some of the establishment’s expenses and the emission of gases into the environment.
To reduce energy consumption it is not necessary to spend large amounts, just be willing to comply with certain tips that will help achieve savings.
Small actions, such as switching off electronics or keeping lights off that are not needed when there is natural light, can reduce the amount of kilowatts consumed per day.
Another option is to keep the electrical equipment in your business clean and properly maintained, which leads to a reduction in energy consumption of between 5% and 10%.
Furthermore, saving energy is only one step towards making your business green and sustainable, a factor that pleases people and motivates them to support your business through your eco-responsible initiative.
Nine ways to save energy in your business
Saving energy in your restaurant is a position that many establishments are implementing. They are part of the actions to fight climate change and to reduce the expenses in the electricity bills.
This time, we’ll introduce you to nine ways to save energy in your business. Measures that are simple to implement and that become a habit in a short time.
Similarly, the ideal is that you analyze and study the possibility of using them all, so that you get a better result in savings.
Some require radical changes to some aspects of your business, but it will be worth every second invested in renovations.
Study of the lighting of the establishment
One of the first actions we recommend is to carry out a study of the restaurant’s lighting.
With this study, you will have the opportunity to determine which parts have more lighting than required, so they consume more energy.
Generally, it is the workers who indicate that the light disturbs them during their working day or even the clientele.
In addition to over-lit business locations, spaces with poor or no lighting should be identified.
At the end of this study, hire a team with experience in electrical work to take care of removing the lights that are left over in the business and cover the spaces that require increased light bulbs.
When they do that work, take advantage of the right time to evaluate the installation of electricity regulators to increase or decrease their use in the business, in case sunlight is used.
Follow fully the Royal Decree 56/2016
Royal Decree 56/2016 was passed in order to establish guidelines for energy audits in Spain.
The energy audits are in charge of checking commercial establishments, during the inspections they define what percentage of savings could be obtained.
In other words, the people in charge of the audit will carry out a thorough review of the lighting of the premises, the ventilation, the temperature control systems and the electrical appliances in it.
Once they have been observed, tools will be used to measure the consumption generated during a working day.
Once the results have been obtained, the auditors will draw up the advice and recommendations that the restaurant should apply in order to reduce the high energy consumption, actions that have an impact on reducing costs.
Making use of natural light
Another alternative to achieve energy savings is to use natural light that reaches the establishment. With this simple measure, you will be able to limit the time that the electrical lighting works.
As there will surely be areas left unlit by natural lighting, it is complemented by electric lighting.
To generate artificial lighting, we recommend the use of LED bulbs, due to their durability and low energy consumption.
High efficiency household appliances
Check the appliances in your restaurant. If your business has old appliances, it’s one of the causes of high electricity bill prices.
It is common for these appliances to consume large amounts of energy and to be discontinued, making them complicated and expensive to maintain.
Taking these obsolete appliances to recycling plants and acquiring new equipment that is highly efficient will make saving energy easier.
When you purchase any appliance that indicates high efficiency, you will have a section in which you specify its energy consumption. Get the ones with low energy consumption and notice the difference.
Maintain a controlled temperature of the air conditioning and heating system
In seasons such as summer or winter, temperatures are usually extreme and customers seek comfort while inside your establishment.
To calm down the heat, without having to consume a large amount of kilowatts per day in the air conditioners, set your thermostat to an average temperature of 20° to 25° Celsius.
In the case of winter, the average temperature of the heating system is between 19° and 21° C.
Implementing LED technology bulbs
Although bulbs made with LED technology are usually expensive, it is not an expense you will have to make very often.
LED bulbs usually have a life span of 50,000 hours and have a higher light output than any other bulb.
Since they last much longer than an incandescent bulb, the business does not generate as much bulb waste.
Finally, another advantage of this type of bulb is that, if placed in the appropriate areas, you can light up the entire establishment with just a few bulbs.
Switching to renewable energies
Although electrical energy seems to be the easiest option, there are also renewable energies or clean energies.
If you start applying these methods to produce the energy your business consumes, you are on the right path to becoming a sustainable business.
This type of energy does not produce greenhouse gases, so it does not pollute. Moreover, it never runs out because it regenerates naturally.
In the case of businesses, the ideal is to use solar energy -produced through solar panels or wind energy, produced with small wind generators-.
If you find it a bit complicated, hire the advice of a company dedicated to generating electricity from renewable energies.
Turn off unused appliances
It is a simple step that is often forgotten on a daily basis, when you stop turning off any electronic devices that have been left unused or when you close down your business.
Beyond turning off and disconnecting any appliances, it is also important to turn off the lights in areas that are not being occupied by someone.
In case you are doing any task that does not require the use of any household appliance, turn them off and on only when you need to use them.
And, at the end of the day, you and the shop workers should make sure that you turn off all artificial lighting and appliances until the next day.
Decorate to have a space with more clarity
The decoration is important to achieve a fresher and clearer environment.
If your establishment uses curtains, try to change them according to the season.
For summer it is important to use lightweight fabrics to avoid heat stress on your business. For the winter, heavy fabric curtains are used to provide heat in the midst of high temperatures.
To provide more clarity when using solar or artificial lighting, it is important that the walls of the room are painted in light or pastel shades.
As they are light colours, they help to reflect the lighting over more areas of the establishment and when using artificial light, it is not necessary to turn on all the bulbs.
Importance of reducing energy use
Under some European Commission guidelines, any business establishment has the capacity to save more than 30% of energy by following energy reduction methods.
Saving energy brings great benefits to business and the environment by reducing electricity bill payments and avoiding the release of tons of greenhouse gases.
According to the calculations made by the European Council, if more than 700,000 businesses were to add to the energy savings, approximately 240,000 kilograms of carbon dioxide would not be produced.
For businesses to achieve the energy savings they want, they must make changes to the systems that deal with lighting, cooling and ventilation.
Also, it is necessary to order necessary products from suppliers to reduce the frequent movements of goods, which generate polluting gases.