There are several reasons having an energy audit done is the right decision for most building owners.
To Reduce Your Operation Expenses, Increase Your Profit
In these days of uncertainty, it is important to keep operating expenses to a minimum. One difference between companies that weather these difficult times and those which do not survive, will be that the survivors will have reduced their unnecessary expenditures before it is too late.
Unnecessary costs include costs for energy you don’t need to use. In the past many companies have just considered utilities as “a cost of doing business.” By running an inefficient building, you are overpaying your utility for energy. It just doesn’t make any sense.
A good building energy audit will point the way to reduce your energy costs by 10% to 40%. For large organizations, this can be substantial, and could mean the difference between staying afloat and going under.
To Determine Which Are the Best Building Energy Efficiency Measures
There are so many vendors peddling their energy efficient devices which are supposed to save energy–most of them do, but some don’t. Just because a device saves energy does not mean it is a good investment. And even if it is a good investment, there may be better energy efficiency investments available.
For example triple-pane windows that you hear advertised on the radio usually save energy, but for some buildings, they will actually result in an increase in energy usage. It is usually a better investment to replace your incandescent light bulbs with CFLs than it is to change out your windows.
So how do you determine what are the best energy conservation measures for your building? That is what an energy audit is for.
The table below lists energy conservation measures from an audit we recently performed on a large office. In this format our client is able to easily evaluate and prioritize the different energy efficiency opportunities.
(If triple pane windows were on this list, the simple payback would likely have been over 15 years. It may sound good on the radio, but a sober analysis shows that there are better ways to spend your energy efficiency dollar.)
To Increase the Value of Your Building
We understand the argument that if your tenants are paying the utility bills, then there is no reason to invest money in making your building energy efficient. After all, you won’t be reaping any energy savings.
Keep in mind that increasing the energy efficiency of your building will increase in value. If you have a “green” building, your tenants will be happy to pay higher rents to occupy your building.
On average for every dollar spent in energy efficiency improvements, appraised building value increases several times.
What is a Commercial Energy Audit?
The term energy audit appears to refer to two distinct things: An energy audit is the process of having a professional energy auditor assess your building for energy savings opportunities. The term energy audit also is used to refer to the result of the energy assessment process, the energy audit report. We will try to keep these terms separate by referring to the report as an “energy audit report.”
An energy audit report is a carefully thought out plan, which, if followed, will lead you to reduced energy costs. Every building is different, and each contains different opportunities which can reduce energy usage. This is why every different building requires its own unique energy audit.
During the energy audit, an energy auditor will visit your site and interview your facility manager, inspect your lighting, air conditioning, heating and ventilation equipment, controls, refrigeration, air compressors, water consuming equipment, and anything else that is using energy. Depending on the type of the audit, the auditor may take measurements of temperatures, pressures, light levels, power draw, and other things.