By Megan Totka (Read the full article at

Unless you enjoy working by candlelight on a manual typewriter, the power bill is a necessary evil for your small business. It’s also one of the last areas business owners consider when it comes to reducing expenses—but it should be at the top of the list.

There are plenty of ways you can save big on your energy costs, while helping the environment at the same time. From small changes in your habits to investments that pay for themselves, here are some great energy-saving tips for your business.

Your Green Office

Let There Be Light (Sometimes)

It’s easy to overlook the lights in your business. You turn them on when it’s dark, or simply out of habit at the beginning of the day and (hopefully) turn them off when you leave. But if you make a conscious effort to control excessive light use, you can save quite a bit on your energy bill. Here’s how.

Inexpensive and Free:

  • Turn off lights in any room that isn’t in use—and remind employees to do the same.
  • Use “free” light by opening curtains and blinds whenever the sun is shining, and turning off the bulbs.
  • Be aware of over-lighting. Just as insufficient light causes problems, too much light can lead to glare, eye strain and headaches.
  • Replace incandescent (standard) light bulbs with energy-saving compact florescent lamps (CFLs), which not only use less energy, but also last 10 times longer before burning out.

Energy-Saving Lighting Investments:

  • Replace lighting fixtures with newer, energy-efficient models.
  • If you have exit signs in your business, upgrade to Energy Star qualified LED signs.
  • Install occupancy sensors in bathrooms, conference rooms, and other areas that aren’t used continually to automatically turn lights on when people enter, and off when they leave.
  • Use photocells or timers to control outdoor lighting.

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Green Office Concept Photo via Shutterstock

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