More and more companies are implementing energy management systems to improve their efficiency and decrease their running costs. Every good management system starts with a comprehensive energy policy that makes the goals and processes clear. At the heart of the system is a monitoring mechanism, which is used to highlight the circuits that consume too much energy. With this information, an improvement plan is then designed.
What Are the Components of Energy Management Systems?
Before you can improve your business’s electrical system, you have to come up with a plan and take stock of the current situation. Your company-wide energy policy serves to define the goals of your management system and get everyone on the same page.
Once you’ve come up with the policy, you can set up an energy monitoring system consisting of a smart panel, consumption monitors, smart circuits, and an app that allows you to control your company’s energy flow. You’ll use the data you gather from your smart panel to make the necessary behavioral and structural changes.
An Energy Policy
Businesses that want to monitor and improve their energy efficiency must have a suitable energy policy. This states the company’s commitment to optimizing the available resources and continually improving energy performance. The best policies are suitable for the scale and nature of the organization, provide a specific framework for reevaluating energy targets, and support the use of energy-saving devices and services.
Your policy should also prioritize adherence to the local legal requirements. After setting it up, make sure the policy is communicated to every member of your organization. A good management system only works when everyone is aware of it and follows the guidelines. Review your policy at least once a year to make sure it’s still up to date.
Energy monitoring is the most important part of your energy management system. It allows you to understand which areas of your business are efficient and which ones still need to be improved. Although there are some standalone energy monitoring systems, they aren’t effective unless they target your whole organization. Setting up a company-wide management system is crucial.
Before purchasing a device, make sure it comes with a smart panel, consumption monitors, smart circuits, and an easy way to control your business’s flow of energy. If you’re not sure how to find an appropriate device, speak to us at Legacy Electric. We can help you to set up an effective monitoring system. Once you know what changes need to be made, we’ll help you implement appropriate solutions.
A Smart Panel
The smart panel serves as the brain of your energy management system. It monitors the amount of electricity you use and shows you how each circuit is performing. With the data gathered from your smart panel, you can evaluate where you need to optimize your business’s energy usage. There are two types of smart panels available.
If you have an old electrical system, you might consider replacing your current panel with a smart one. This option is more comprehensive, and it makes the addition of solar panels and other innovations easier. However, it is more expensive than simply adding a smart panel to your existing breaker box. If you’d like to keep your old electrical panel, you can either place the smart panel next to it or integrate it into the breaker box.
While the smart panel gives you some information about which circuits are using up the most energy, you can get more details from consumption monitors. They accurately track your energy usage by using machine learning and artificial intelligence. Over time, they learn the “electricity signatures” of each of your devices, so they give you information at the device level.
When the energy usage pattern of a piece of equipment changes, you’ll find out right away through your consumption monitor. This not only makes it easier for you to reduce your energy consumption, but it also helps you discover and repair faulty equipment more quickly.
Traditionally, businesses have one control panel, which is often located in the basement. When a circuit needs to be turned on or off, managers or employees have to walk to the breaker box and flip the switch manually. This is no longer necessary with smart circuits. They can be controlled remotely from an electronic device.
If you switch from a regular panel to a smart panel, smart circuits are likely included in your purchase. However, you’ll have to rewire your electrical panel if you’re getting an add-on smart panel instead of a brand-new system. Depending on the size of your building and the number of circuits, you might have to purchase several add-on smart panels and smart plugs.
A Way to Control Energy Flow
Most energy management systems are controlled with an app that allows users to check their energy usage and turn devices on or off remotely. Almost every app comes with some basic features. You’ll be able to see how much energy your business is consuming, either at the circuit or the device level. You’ll also be able to turn each device or circuit on or off, no matter where you are.
This makes it easier for you to reduce unnecessary energy consumption. If you or your employees forget to switch off a device when leaving the building, this task can be completed remotely from your phone. Some apps also provide statistics, like costs and trends over time. Sometimes, energy management apps show the cost of electricity in real time, so you can monitor how much you’re spending on power.
An Improvement Plan
There are several ways of improving your company’s energy efficiency. When you install an energy management system, you’ll see an almost immediate change in your use of electricity. This is because you’re able to turn devices on and off more easily, but also because you’re becoming more aware of inefficiencies and adjusting your behavior to minimize them.
To take this a step further, you can make changes to your system. Upgrade old appliances that are using too much energy, install solar panels and other innovative solutions in your building and work with your employees to optimize everyone’s energy usage. If you need to make structural changes, reach out to us at Legacy Electric. We can set up new systems and alter existing ones.
Is an Energy Management System Necessary for a Modern Business?
Environmental concerns are growing at the moment, and many people are starting to see the first effects of climate change on their lives. That’s why consumers are increasingly interested in doing business with companies that have a low carbon footprint. By installing a management system, you demonstrate that you are doing all you can to avoid wasting resources.
It’s also worth noting that environmental laws and regulations are likely to become stricter in the next decades. By optimizing your consumption now, you’re ahead of the curve, and you won’t have to make last-minute changes. When you cut out unnecessary waste, you reduce your expenses. Since energy prices have risen sharply in the last few years, managing your electricity usage can make a big difference to your business’s running costs.
Energy management systems are important for businesses that want to decrease their running costs and environmental impact. They consist of a comprehensive policy, accurate monitoring equipment, and an improvement plan. Get in touch with us at Legacy Electric to find out more about our electrical services. We can help you improve your current system’s efficiency or design a brand-new system for your building.