Controlling energy costs in office buildings can be difficult due to the constant coming and going of employees and visitors to the building. There are a number of methods that can be used to reduce the amount of energy used in the office building and the methods chosen for each building should be based on the characteristics of that particular building to ensure maximum energy savings.

Five Strategies to Control Office Energy Costs

Here are five of the most essential strategies for controlling the energy costs of an office building.

1. Turn Off Unnecessary Lights
Turn off lights and equipment when not in use. Areas that are not being used can remain dark until needed unless keeping the area unlighted would pose a safety hazard in an emergency.

Some office buildings have all of the lights and sockets in a particular office area connected to a single switch to ensure that everything can be turned off quickly and easily at the end of the workday. If yours does not have this type of master switch, consider installing one.

2. Use Window Coverings Wisely
Use window blinds to block direct sunlight in the warmer months to reduce cooling costs. The cost of the window blinds will be significantly less than the cost of the energy being used to cool the building, and they should last for many years before needing to be replaced.

During the colder months, open blinds or remove window hangings during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat the office building. The sun beaming though the glass of the windows will create enough warmth to significantly decrease the amount of energy needed to bring the building up to a comfortable temperature.

3. Unplug Equipment Not in Use
Any equipment that drains energy when not in use should be unplugged, especially when the office building is closed. Items that are known to drain energy as long as they are plugged in include coffee pots, radios, desktop printers, fans, and cell phone chargers. To make it easy to unplug multiple items at once, plug these devices into a power strip that can be unplugged with a single action.

4. Change Air Filters Regularly
Change the air filters in the building’s HVAC system regularly. A dirty air filter can increase the amount of energy needed for the HVAC system to work properly and can damage expensive equipment. High quality air filters are able to trap more dust and dirt than cheap air filters, so it may be more cost effective to invest in a higher quality product that can be in use for a longer period of time.

5. Upgrade to Programmable Thermostats
Replace manual thermostats with programmable thermostats. Programmable
thermostats can effectively regulate the temperature of a large area of the office building and can be set to a level that is comfortable for the occupants of the building. Some of these thermostats can be locked so that only authorized personnel will be able to change the programmed temperature.

Big Savings from Small Changes
Each of these actions to conserve energy in an office building takes a minimal amount of time or effort to put into effect. The energy savings that can be realized by taking these actions is well worth the effort involved.

Author's Bio: 

Jim Gates, CAFS, is the brand manager for Quality Filters, Inc. (, a leading manufacturer and distributor of high quality home and commercial air filters. The company’s products are available online at (