Maintenance One

Quick Guide to Saving Energy and Recycling in Your Office

A lot of people are devoted to saving and recycling at home; however, the biggest impact is achieved when you do the same in your office.

Consider the level of activity at your workplace:  every light turned on all day long, several computers and other power consuming electrical equipment always on, tons of paper used and discarded throughout the day, paper cups and disposable lunch boxes come and go, and a huge amount of other recyclable waste that is just thrown into the garbage.

Here’s a quick guide that will help you save energy and recycle in your office.  You will not only reduce costs and profit more by applying these tips, but also show your employees, suppliers, clients, and customers, that you care about them and the world.

Lighting
-Switch to energy-efficient light bulbs.

-Turn off the lights when no one is in the room.

-Get rid of decorative or unnecessary lighting.

-Install mirrors to reflect natural light and to diminish the need for artificial light.

-Install automatic motion detecting lights in rooms that are seldom used.

-Set external lights to turn on and off with a timer to prevent them from being on all day long.

Equipment
-Substitute old equipment for the energy-efficiency rated kind.

-Unplug everything that can be unplugged when not being used.

-Do not leave any equipment on standby.  For example, turn off your monitor while you are away, the screensaver is not an energy saver.

-Print as much as you can in ‘economy mode’, to reduce ink or toner consumption by 50%.

-Put your font at a very dark grey instead of black to use 20 to 30% less toner.

-Prefer ink jet to laser printers to reduce electricity consumption by 80 to 90%.

-Print in black and white instead of color to use 50% less electricity.

-Fit multiple pages on one sheet of paper by using ‘size reduction’ on the photocopier.

Heating
-Turn down the heating or turn up the air conditioning a couple of degrees.

-Turn the heating down in unused corridors and storerooms.

-Program the heating system timer to match working hours.

-Maintain doors and windows closed when the heating is on.

-Check the radiators and storage heaters to ensure these are not obstructed.

Business travelling
-When possible, use video conferencing and other communication technologies to avoid travelling.

-Work from home several days a week to reduce commuting.

-Car pool with your colleagues to save gas.

Water
-Ensure that taps don’t leak and that toilets and urinals are working fine.

Recycling and avoiding waste
-Only print what really needs to be printed, and use both sides of the sheet.  If only one side is printed, use the other side to take down notes.

-When possible, use email or telephone to communicate with others.

-Remove yourself from mailing lists and ask companies to contact you by email instead.

-Use 100% recycled paper.

-Have one single waste bin instead of one per desk, so that people have to think twice before throwing something away.  A full single bin will also be a reminder of how much waste is being produced.

-Buy large volumes of cleaning materials to reduce packaging and costs.

-Look for alternative ways to use packaging materials to avoid throwing them away.

-Use old paper to make notepads.

Office cleaning companies that are truly committed to excellence normally provide help with many of the tasks mentioned above.  Talk to yours or look for one that can help you enforce these valuable habits in your office.

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