Get the Inside Scoop on Top Tips for Saving Energy in Your C-Store
Keep the doors of all refrigeration and freezer units shut as much as possible. Repeated fluctuations in temperature will damage food quality and cost money.
Check the temperature settings of your units. If the temperature is set lower than necessary, you are probably wasting energy.
TIP: Recommended settings for freezers are between -14° and -8° Fahrenheit (-25° and -22° Celsius). Recommended settings for refrigerators are between 35° and 38° Fahrenheit (1° and 3° Celsius).
Clean the cooling coils on the backs of all units. Over time, dirt accumulation impairs proper heat transfer and lowers the efficiency and capacity of refrigerators. Remove dirt, dust, and accumulated ice on coils.
Ensure that door seals on units close tightly. Tight seals prevent warm air from entering the unit so the unit cools properly and prevents frost build-up.
Smart Idea: If you can easily slide a dollar bill into the seal, you need to adjust the door seal.
Purchase ENERGY STAR-certified refrigerators and freezers, which save you energy and money over time. You may be able to find rebates for your purchase from ENERGY STAR partners. Learn more about ENERGY STAR equipment here: https://www.energystar.gov/sites/default/files/asset/document/EPA_ES_CFS_Refrid_Freezer_Factsheet_v21_co-brand.pdf
Top 4 Heating & Cooling Tips
Change your air filter regularly. Check your filter every month, especially during months of heavy use (winter and summer). If the filter looks dirty after a month, change it. A dirty filter will slow down air flow and make your system work harder to keep you warm or cool—wasting energy.
Hint: At a minimum, change your filter every three months.
Get a yearly tune up on all your HVAC equipment. Just as a tune-up for your car can improve your gas mileage, a yearly tune-up of your heating and cooling system can improve efficiency and comfort. Refer to the HVAC Yearly Tune-up Checklist to ensure your HVAC technician completes all the steps.
Install a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat is ideal for areas that are unoccupied during set periods of time throughout the week. Keep rooms that have minimal traffic (such as stock rooms and warehouses) cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer.
Seal your heating and cooling ducts to save as much as 20% on energy bills. Ducts that move air to-and-from a forced air furnace, central air conditioner, or heat pump are often big energy wasters. Sealing and insulating ducts can improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system.
HVAC Yearly Tune-up Checklist
Heating & Cooling:
- Check thermostat settings to ensure the cooling and heating system is set to a comfortable temperature, not too hot or too cold.
- Tighten all electrical connections and measure voltage and current on motors. Faulty electrical connections can cause unsafe operation of your system and reduce the life of major components.
- Lubricate all moving parts. Parts that lack lubrication cause friction in motors and increases the amount of electricity you use.
- Check and inspect the condensate drain in your central air conditioner, furnace and/or heat pump (when in cooling mode). A plugged drain can cause water damage and affect indoor humidity levels.
- Check controls of the system to ensure proper and safe operation. Check the starting cycle of the equipment to assure the system starts, operates, and shuts off properly.
- Clean evaporator and condenser air conditioning coils. Dirty coils reduce the system’s ability to cool your store and cause the system to run longer, increasing energy costs and reducing the life of the equipment.
- Check your central air conditioner’s refrigerant level and adjust if necessary. Too much or too little refrigerant will make your system less efficient, increasing energy costs and reducing the life of the equipment.
- Clean and adjust blower components to provide proper system airflow for greater comfort levels. Airflow problems can reduce your system’s efficiency by up to 15%.
- Check all gas (or oil) connections, gas pressure, burner combustion and heat exchanger. Improperly operating gas (or oil) connections are a fire hazard and can contribute to health problems. A dirty burner or cracked heat exchanger causes improper burner operation. Either can cause the equipment to operate less safely and efficiently.
Petrosoft is committed to not only helping c-store owners like you continue to save money, but also to help you boost revenue. Learn more about our c-store software solutions here: https://www.petrosoftinc.com/.