How low-cost technology can ‘call time’ on energy wastage in bars


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Richard Bonelle Utility HelplineRichard Bonelle, energy manager at Utility Helpline, explains how low-cost technology can help licensed premises manage energy consumption and reduce bills

Energy costs can make up a significant portion of a bar’s monthly expenses, especially as the days start getting shorter and the nights colder. Technology presents a number of opportunities to identify areas of waste that could lead to efficiency savings of up to 40% for some pubs, bars and hotels. This can help managers reduce their carbon footprint and their energy spending.

Firstly, smart meters allow you to monitor your overall energy consumption in real time. When combined with software that brings this smart meter data to life in a graphical format, you can easily spot areas of waste that are draining profitability. If, for example, you notice unusual consumption patterns during unoccupied hours, this is an indication that unnecessary equipment is being left on.

Metering technology can also identify waste on a smaller scale. Installing sub-meters in your kitchen will let you evaluate the energy-efficiency of your equipment. If your fridge or freezer are showing a high kilowatt per hour (KwH) output, then there may be justification you need to invest in a newer model with a short energy “payback time”.

Sensors are also useful for cutting energy waste, as are thermometers in your cellar. Remember, overcooling a cellar by just 1°C can add 10% onto cellar energy costs. Motion sensors in the bathroom can also generate significant savings, especially if toilets are unoccupied for long periods.

Utility Helpline, which is part of ‘Carlsberg We Deliver More’, specialises in helping pubs and other licensed premises to reduce their energy bills. The organisation recently published the business guide to smart metering.

Visit www.utilityhelpline.co.uk.

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