Energy Saving Advice For Nurseries and Childcare Centres
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Tips and helpful ways to save money on energy costs for Nurseries and Childcare Centres
If you own or manage a nursery or a similar type of childcare centre and manage the expenses of your premises. You will be well aware of the costs incurred with the upkeep and running of the business. So trying to find initiatives to cut costs and save money will be as true for your business as any other.
Although it can be difficult to know where savings can be made, there are things that can be done that will help to cut your energy usage and help to save you money. With energy costs on the increase and the move towards greener initiatives and finding ways to conserve and save energy. There’s never been a better time to start finding ways to save.
With demand for childcare places and complaints from parents regarding the cost of their childcare. Even with 30 free hours of care, many parents are finding this just isn’t enough with parents doing their best to find quality childcare, just without the big price tag that often follows.
So, anything you can do to cut back on your own costs, and in turn pass those savings and incentives on to parents will ultimately help your business to bridge the financial gap between offering a great standard of service and a reasonable prices.
Learning is fun! You’re never too old to learn something new
Young minds are the easiest to teach, because they’re so open to learning new wisdom. Unfortunately, as we get a little older, we stop forgetting to learn and become a little stuck in our ways.
With rising energy costs and our own individual need to commitment to helping the environment in any little way we can. There’s never been a better time to begin learning some new helpful tips and things you can be doing today to help your nursery or childcare centre save money.
You could even make learning these tips fun for the children to learn about and have them pass them on to their parents.
Remember… Learning (to Save Energy and Money) is Fun!
Five energy saving tips for nurseries and childcare centres
Remember, although many of these tips are designed for businesses. Much of what you learn here could be put into practice at home…
1. Take control of your heating
The ideal room temperature for a baby is 20-22°C, so you don’t have to have your premises heating higher than this for the little people that you are looking after to remain comfortable.
Reducing the temperature of your thermostat by just 1°C can save £90 per year in an average three-bedroom house, so imagine the price difference if you were to apply the same concept to your nursery?
2. A bright idea for your nursery
Lighting is one of the main contributors to the electricity bill of any business – No one can work (or play) in the dark!
One of the quickest ways to cut down on your energy usage, is to replace your old incandescent light bulbs for an energy saving light bulb. Many light fixtures which take a bayonet or screw type light bulb will happily accommodate a more energy efficient light light bulb or LED light bulb.
If you have any areas of your building such as store cupboards or other windowless rooms where staff often leave light son, you may want to consider fitting motion sensors or timer switches if these areas are not used for long periods. This will also help to save money by ensuring rooms with limited use do not go all day (and night?) with lights left on.
Of course, the initial cost of buying an energy saving or LED light bulb will be higher than the old style, incandescent light bulbs. But over the lifetime of the bulbs, you will make a greater saving. The amount that you can save by exchanging traditional lightbulbs with LED lighting can be worked out using the following formula:
Number of bulbs x 3 = Total potential savings per year (£)
The installation of motion sensors has been reported to save businesses as much as 10% off their annual electricity bill depending on your usage. Together, both of these ideas could help you to reduce the cost of lighting your childcare premises substantially once implemented.
3. Prevent draughts and cold air flow
It’s quite surprising how much money draughts can cost your business, as many people will often reach for the heating dial, rather than track down the source of the draft.
To give you an idea of the impact this can have, leaving your premises windows open overnight will waste enough fuel to power a small car for 35 miles!
Stay on top of draughts by covering all of the following:
✓ Close your windows
When it starts to get cold, ensure all of the winders are firmly closed and draft free before turning up the heating dial.
✓ Install and renew cavity and roof insulation
Failing to do this could regularly lose you up to ¼ of the heat in your business.
✓ Cover draughty windows
If you have old windows that regularly get draughty and are never opened. Use a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet on a frame or tape clear plastic film to the inside of your window frames during the cold winter months. Make sure the plastic is sealed tightly to the frame to help reduce infiltration
✓ Cover bare floors
Floors can account for as much as 10% of heat loss if they’re not insulated according to the National Energy Foundation (NEF)
✓ Stay on top of your weather stripping
Worn or torn weather stripping can lose between 7 and 12% of the heat in your building
4. Do a BIG wash every time
There are often a range of spills, bodily fluids and general mess within nurseries which results in a big pile of washing!
Making sure that you fill your washing machines and dishwashers to their maximum capacity will naturally reduce the number of loads that you need to do. This will cut down on the amount of water, electricity and cleaning products that you need to use. Couple this with your greenest dishwasher or washing machine setting and you will soon be saving the pounds!
5. Turn EVERYTHING OFF at the end of the day
This might seem like an obvious point to make, however, there are still too many businesses ignoring this easy method of making energy savings. To demonstrate the brilliant impact that this tip can have on your business, here’s a fact to help you to understand it’s importance…
By simply switching off your plugs and powering down, businesses could cut their consumption by as much as 40% annually according to the Rainforest Alliance. By extension, if you cut your energy consumption by 40%, that ultimately means a potential saving of up to 40% on your annual energy bill spend!
Extra tip to help you make your business greener
When children are small their immune system is still developing which means they are less able to fight bacteria, disease and infection.
Outbreaks are sometimes unavoidable, however there is something that you can do to reduce the risk of this happening in your day-care centre: Bring in plants or make an internal garden.
This will improve the air quality around your nursery, stopping illnesses that are the result of organic chemicals including: eye/nose/throat irritation, headaches, nausea/ vomiting, dizziness and asthma symptoms
Could you make an instant saving with your energy supplier?
Aside from energy consumption reduction techniques, there are other ways to save on your business gas and electricity.
Many businesses are overpaying their energy supplier because they have gone out of contract and rolled onto a standard, higher rate energy tariff. By simply comparing new energy contracts through Exchange Utility, you will gain access to the tariff prices for a range of UK energy suppliers.
By doing this, you could instantly save up to 36% on your energy bill spend – What are you waiting for? It’s quick, simple and can help your nursery or childcare centre to take the first step in taking control of its energy costs and consumption.
Remember – You should Never Stop Learning to SAVE ENERGY and MONEY!