By: Karen Witkowski
Summertime in Michigan means backyard barbecues, trips to the lake and plenty of sunny skies. The rising temperatures come with increased energy costs—especially for manufacturers who need to power up equipment and run a well-lit facility. Here are four green initiatives that can help manufacturers SAVE SOME GREEN:
1. Use Smarter Lighting
Since most manufacturing facilities have a large number of lights, it’s critical that energy-efficient lighting is properly installed. Lighting alternatives include: fluorescent or LED fixtures, utilizing daylight as much as possible through skylights and turning off lights during slow/off hours.
Here is one of our skylights in our open office area. They can provide a significant amount of natural light.
2. Don’t Wait – Insulate!
High-quality insulation isn’t only beneficial during the cold Michigan winters, it’s ideal for the summer months as well. The most cost-effective cooling strategies for effectively sealing in the air in your building include: tight duct work and shading windows to prevent the hot sun from coming in.
Instead of turning the thermostat to its lowest setting, Tricia uses her window shades to help her stay cool.
3. Consume Energy Wisely
Electrical rates can vary based on the time of day energy is consumed. Manufacturers can strategically use this factor to their advantage by adjusting operating hours accordingly. Try minimizing usage during “rate peak periods” which usually occur in the afternoon and early evening hours.
We try to set our “shared” electronics on a timer when they will get the most use. In this case, employees will not pay much attention, if at all, to our display boards after 5 p.m., so we’ve set the display to shut off at 5 p.m.
4. Have Everyone Join In!
Emphasize the importance of reducing energy consumption and encourage your colleagues and/or employees to turn off lights, machines, equipment, etc., when not in use.
Our employees are always mindful of turning off their electronics when they leave for the day to save on energy and equipment costs. Susan is no exception!
By following these helpful ideas and making a conscious effort to conserve energy, manufacturers could see significant savings on their energy bills throughout the entire year.