Restaurants are heavy energy consumers and use five times more per square foot energy than other commercial buildings. And compared to the average energy use of a residential building, a commercial building consumes 30 times more electricity. In most big restaurants, HVAC systems, lighting, and refrigeration make up most electricity bills. By improving energy efficiency, restaurants can save energy, reduce operating costs, and increase their ROI.
It is costly to run a restaurant. Therefore, it is essential to explore all the ways to save your money. With some small behavioral changes, some repairs, and some energy-efficient investments, restaurants can become energy-efficient and save money.
If you are running a restaurant business and are looking for ways to cut short your electricity bills, you may look into this guide and learn some actionable tips that may come handy for you.
Conduct an energy audit
If you want to reduce your energy conception, the first step is to determine how much energy you are using. Then, you can contact a registered energy auditor to conduct the audit for your restaurant business. With the help of this audit, you can understand the complete electricity consumption pattern and correct the faults with your energy usage.
An energy audit will open energy efficiency opportunities for you. It will help you analyze your energy usage and ways to use it efficiently. It will also help identify any safety concerns about electrical systems or wiring, thus improving the safety of your business. By following the suggestions given by the energy auditors, you can effectively reduce your utility bill.
Understand your energy bill
One of the best ways to reduce energy bills is to understand where your restaurant uses the most energy. See where your electricity bill crosses the budget and devise a plan to control it. See where you spend the most money and develop strategies to reduce operating costs.
Control your energy use
Without making much investment, there are ways to control your energy use. For example, a simple act like turning off an appliance when not needed will help you reduce your bills. Or, if you have several electric stove tops, switch off a few and only use a single stove when there are few customers will also help you save energy.
Invest in appliances smartly
See if some of the appliances you are using are drawing more energy or are not upgraded, and replace them immediately. Today, many manufacturers are providing energy-efficient appliances like high-efficiency fryers and high-efficiency dish wash machines. Such energy star-certified equipment will use less energy than the standard equipment.
Refrigerators are one of the most significant contributors to operating costs. However, when you unintentionally leave your refrigerators and freezers open, you waste a lot of energy. To prevent these issues, install motion sensors.
You will have to invest some amount initially to purchase new and energy-efficient appliances. However, as they are more energy efficient than the low-cost second-hand models, you can save money on your electricity bills. Therefore, in the long run, you can save more money. Also, the new equipment is easier to repair, and you will not have to replace it soon.
Minimize your electricity and water use
One way to make your restaurants more sustainable is by reducing the overconsumption of resources like water and electricity. You can easily make your restaurant sustainable by cutting down on water and energy. For example, investing in water-efficient devices like sensor detection taps and installing timers in your lights is an efficient way to reduce waste.
You can check who your energy supplier is, and if they are not following sustainable practices, then you may switch your supplier. Companies like Business Energy UK enable business energy comparison and provide greener supplier options. So, you can switch to a supplier who generates their energy from greener sources to make your restaurants sustainable.
Reduce Heating and cooling
Heating and cooling are the second most prominent reason for high operating costs in a restaurant. So, find ways to reduce the usage of energy used in ventilation.
You can take small steps like reducing hot water usage and not changing the thermostat temperature. You can invest in an intelligent thermostat to optimize energy use or use a tamper-resistant thermostat to stop any unauthorized or accidental changes in the temperature. Ensure that the dishwashing temperature in your food service is less than 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
You can also consider replacing your air filters regularly and repairing or replacing damaged ducts. You can also consider building additional panels to reduce the heat in your kitchen.
Going paperless has many benefits. Along with saving a lot of trees, it will also save your energy, thus decreasing energy costs. Do not give a printed-out receipt if the customers do not ask for it. This will minimize the amount of paper you use and reduce the energy required to run the printers. Instead of giving them printed receipts, you can send those receipts through email or text. This will not just help you save electricity bills and also resources but will also help your restaurant move out from the traditional ways and pace up with the technological advancements the world has made in this digital era.
Involve your staffs
If you want your energy efficiency plan to work correctly, it needs collective effort. You need to involve everyone in your team. Hold a meeting and inform all your staff about your plans to cut the restaurant’s electricity bill short. Tell your staff how you are spending on energy now and tell them about the new target. Educate them about the importance of conserving energy.
Other than cutting short the electricity bills, tell them about the other environmental benefits. Ask them whether they have any plan on how to achieve their idea. Encourage them to share their thought on it.
Monitor the energy consumption habit of your staff
Constantly monitor if all your team is sticking to your plan and no one is wasting energy. If you find any employee wasting energy, gently remind them about the goals and how relevant energy consumption is in this era of growing environmental issues
Reward staff who are actively saving energy
You can reward employees for actively trying to save energy and reduce restaurant electricity bills. If you see that you have reached any of your energy-saving goals or see any improvement, reward your employees.
To reduce the electricity bills of your restaurant, you do not have to take some drastic measures. Instead, you can make minor adjustments and make a massive difference in your electricity bill.