Tune up Your Buildings

Tune up Your Buildings
Photo: Unsplash.com

By: Marcy Paulson

According to EPA’s Energy Star, 30% of energy is wasted. By learning how to use energy more efficiently, businesses could reduce operating expenses and lower emissions. 

For example, when the Council Rock School District used energy-efficient strategies to reduce energy consumption by 40%, it saved approximately five million dollars on its annual energy bill.

A Building Systems Performance Study Boosts a Building’s Efficiency

“Managing your building systems is not just a matter of lowering expenses — it’s about taking responsibility for our carbon footprint,” says Bill Ganz, CEO of Sterile Safe Solutions. “Buildings are major energy consumers and offer a significant opportunity for savings and efficiency improvements. Conducting a building systems performance study is the first step towards unlocking these potential benefits.” 

A building systems performance study is a comprehensive analysis of a building system’s resource utilization that identifies opportunities to improve efficiency and reduce operating costs. The final work product of the study provides actionable items, not just a laundry list of “issues.”

Benefits of a Building Systems Performance Study

By implementing the recommended changes from a building systems performance study, businesses can reduce their operating expense costs. Implementation of the study’s strategies impacts much more than utility bills. Maintenance frequency, use of spare parts, life expectancy, comfort, productivity, etc., contribute to providing significant long-term cost savings. 

Though it’s sometimes assumed that only older buildings suffer from energy inefficiencies, even newer constructions can have areas that hemorrhage energy. “Understanding when and how energy is consumed is crucial,” says Ganz. “Peak usage periods may coincide with higher energy rates. Adjusting usage schedules or implementing energy management systems can evenly distribute usage and lead to significant cost reductions.” 

HVAC systems are often the largest energy consumers in a building, and a building systems performance study can show how efficiently these systems are operating. As a deceptively complex system, incremental increases in HVAC efficiency result in equal to or more than other complete simple measures such as lighting. 

“Upon identifying inefficiencies, a building systems performance study provides you with the insights you need to prioritize and implement improvements,” Ganz explains. “From the simple filter improvements to the more complex task of replacing key humidification systems, the recommendations from a building systems performance study should act as a roadmap for making calculated investments with significant returns.” 

In addition to direct savings, many government entities offer incentives for energy-efficient upgrades. A building systems performance study helps businesses align with these programs to further reduce the costs of implementing improvements. 

A building systems performance study often includes a plan for ongoing monitoring and maintenance. This ensures that systems continue to operate efficiently and prevents minor issues from becoming costly problems. 

Finally, a building systems performance study allows businesses to brand themselves in a way that better resonates with customers. Applying the findings of a building systems performance study enhances a company’s image as a conscious and sustainable operation, potentially attracting customers and employees who value environmental stewardship.

Many Businesses Still Misunderstand Government-Mandated Energy Studies

To combat energy waste and promote sustainability, local and state governments are increasingly mandating energy studies for commercial buildings. Despite these regulations, many businesses are still in the dark about the benefits these studies offer. 

“While these mandates may feel like just another bureaucratic burden, they present a substantial upside for businesses,” explains Ganz. “A building systems performance study is far more than a compliance checkbox; it is a meaningful strategy towards innovation, sustainability, and significant cost savings.” 

Despite clear incentives, however, many businesses are either unaware of the energy mandate requirements or do not understand the cost-saving implications. Building owners often need education on the direct benefits of building systems performance studies to overcome misconceptions about their value. 

“We help businesses understand state policies, achieve their operational goals, reduce overhead costs, and become more energy efficient,” concludes Ganz. “The upfront cost of a building systems performance study is an investment that pays for itself many times over through the life of the building. Understanding where and how inefficiencies occur equips building owners and managers with the knowledge to make calculated, impactful decisions. By not only saving money but also conserving precious resources, a comprehensive building systems performance study is a smart step towards a sustainable, cost-effective future.”

Published by: Martin De Juan


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