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Achieve energy savings by upgrading your office equipment

February 27, 2017

By Chelsea Stein, Courtesy of Michigan Energy Options

Office equipment acts as the guts of your business, making your day-to-day operations possible. The energy needed to power your office equipment certainly comes at a price – representing about 19% of total office building expenditures. For Michigan, energy consumption of office equipment alone is between 12%-15% of total electricity use. To begin to achieve energy savings with office appliances and equipment, here are a few simple steps.

What You Can Do

  • Unplug appliances or use a smart power strip. Some equipment continues to draw power even when it is switched off. Power strips can help you manage this by completely cutting off the power when items are not in use.
  • Activate power management features and software on your computer. This allows your computer to enter “sleep mode” after a set time of inactivity, conserving power.
  • Swap out your desktop for a laptop. On average, laptop computers use 80% less energy than desktop computers!
  • Upgrade to ENERGY STAR qualified appliances and equipment. ENERGY STAR appliances do the same work but use 10-50% less energy and water when compared to standard models. 
  • Don’t forget about the break room…
    • Clean fridge coils regularly to better keep your food cold. 
    • Run the dishwasher only when it’s full to conserve energy and water.
    • Use timers on coffee maker heating elements to ensure they are not in use after hours.
    • Have a brownbag or on-the-company lunch and educate employees about these and other low- or no-cost energy saving actions they can make themselves – like turning things off when they leave for the day.

Money You Will Save
Reducing your energy usage by upgrading to energy efficient appliances and office equipment can potentially help you save anywhere from $50-$200 annually per workstation. When you achieve energy savings through energy efficiency you save money, freeing up resources to help your small business grow.

The Bigger Picture
Energy efficient office equipment is just one part of a comprehensive energy improvement plan that you can implement for you small business. Other areas that can be addressed include: heating and cooling, water usage, insulating/sealing your building envelope, and lighting. Many upgrades qualify for local utility rebates and incentives. 

Energy costs are ranked as a top three business expense for more than a third of the nation’s small businesses today. You’ve got a business to run. Investing in energy efficiency allows you to better focus on what it is you do best: your business.

Since 1978 Michigan Energy Options (MEO) has been pursuing its mission of guiding communities toward being more sustainable and resilient through the adoption of energy efficiency and renewable energy. MEO provides unbiased expertise, research and results-driven programs, while working collaboratively with local governments, businesses and community leaders statewide. Contact MEO by email at or by phone 517.337.0422.

For more information on taking steps toward energy efficiency, visit: 
Michigan Energy Options
Small Business Association
U.S. Department of Energy

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