Preparing Your Business for Winter Weather

Winter is coming, and it’s heading straight for your business. Now is the time to prepare. From energy efficiency to emergency planning, these measures will help you save money, maintain comfort and stay in business all winter long.

Heating system maintenance

If you use a furnace or packaged rooftop unit, these measures will help optimize system performance.

  • Get a tune up. Hire a qualified professional to inspect and clean your heating system. This will help spot any problems and ensure that your system is running efficiently.
  • Change air filters throughout your facility according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Dirty filters make your system work harder, wasting energy and reducing indoor air quality.
  • Seal duct leaks. Leaky ducts can have a serious impact on heating system efficiency, costing your business energy dollars.
  • Insulate accessible ductwork. Heat radiating through ducts in unconditioned spaces is energy lost.
  • Check dampers. Make sure all motorized dampers are operating properly. All outside air dampers should remain closed during unoccupied hours.

Around your building

These actions will help ensure that your heating system isn’t working harder than necessary.

  • Install programmable thermostats. Control heating energy costs by automatically adjusting building temperatures based on your operating hours. Newer smart models provide advanced features, such as remote control.
  • Seal your building envelope. Inspect door, window and other openings for gaps where air can escape. Seal them with caulk or weatherstripping.
  • Maintain airflow. Make sure registers are unobstructed by furniture or equipment. This will help ensure proper air distribution, improving comfort and system performance.
  • Check insulation. Ensure that your insulation levels meet those recommended in the ASHRAE 90.1 energy efficiency standard for commercial buildings.

Staying in business

Extreme winter weather can result in business interruptions, endanger staff and damage critical equipment. Take these steps to ensure  you’re prepared.

  • Prepare an emergency kit. Develop an emergency kit including food, water and first aid supplies. Designate safe areas for staff during a storm.
  • Update your emergency plan. Review your emergency plan and update if needed. Your plan should include evacuation routes and facility closing procedures.
  • Ensure backup power. Your electric services are reliable, but outages can happen. That’s why safe and reliable backup power is essential. Make sure backup generators are operating properly and test them regularly throughout the season.

Looking to save more? Hire a qualified professional to perform an energy audit of your facility. You’ll receive a targeted set of recommendations that will help you reduce energy costs and provide a more comfortable business environment.