Commercial Buildings Leaking Money

New Zealand Management, June 2003 | Go to article overview

Commercial Buildings Leaking Money


The commercial sector uses nearly 10% of New Zealand's energy. Most of it goes into buildings for lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Clearly, property owners and tenants have plenty of scope to reduce consumption and help New Zealand reach Target 10%. Here are a few tips that will help:

* Ensure air conditioning and heating systems only operate during hours of business

* Use the residual heat in your building and switch off 1/2 to 1 hour earlier

* Widen the heating and cooling bandwidth eg. heat to 20[degrees]C instead of 21[degrees]C and switch on again at 18[degrees]C instead of 19[degrees]C

* On extremely cold days drop the temperature in common areas by another degree because people will be dressed accordingly

* Turn off any feature lighting and large rooftop signage at night. Blazing signs will attract bad publicity

* Ensure that carpark lighting is on only when required

* Manage your cleaners' use of lighting. In two or three hours they can account for 25% of your building's lighting bill

* Check hot water cylinder temperatures are set at 60[degrees]C

* Encourage staff or tenants to switch off lights and equipment when not in use, including computers (especially monitors) if they'll be away more than 15 minutes from their desk

* Identify non-essential lighting that can be switched off. …

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