Big ways for small businesses to save energy during the holidays

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THE holiday season is often an active time that can become even busier for small business owners who keep the rush humming. From serving their neighborhoods to wrapping up end-of-year projects and preparing for the new year, small business owners have plenty to think about. However, remembering to check in on your energy use during the holidays will help more than just your bottom line.

Energy Upgrade California, the statewide initiative encouraging Californians to use energy better, is committed to keeping you and your small business up-to-date on how you can reduce energy use and shrink your carbon footprint. Even the smallest of changes can make a big impact on a business’ energy use during the busy holiday season:

Audit your energy use, not just your books. Requesting an energy assessment from your local energy provider can help identify any opportunities to save energy and money.

Make your thermostat work for you. A programmable thermostat can save an extra 10 percent on heating and cooling costs. They regulate the temperature of the building or space, so you don’t have to. Adjusting the thermostat by even a few degrees according to when people are in the space versus when they’re not can save energy.

Put the closed sign on your equipment. A good rule of thumb for your office equipment: if it’s plugged in, it’s using energy – even if you’ve powered down for the day. Unplugging light-up signs and displays when not in use can help you save.

Incorporate your HVAC into your cleaning routine. Dirty air filters make HVAC systems work harder and reduces air flow. With the change in seasons, check to see if your air filters should be swapped out to ensure the system runs more efficiently.

Protect office hardware with a power strip. All those cords coming from your printers, computers and phones use energy even when you’re not using them. Organize and plug them into a power strip to make them easy to shut off at once and to help save up to $100 a year.

To learn more simple ways to save energy during the busy holiday season and to join the growing number of California small businesses working to use energy better, visit

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