March – Plug Loads
Plug loads are one of the fastest growing sources of energy use in commercial buildings today. In offices, they account for 25 percent of office electricity use. In offices that have already improved the efficiency of their lighting and HVAC systems, that number can be as much as 50 percent. Here is how our offices broke down.
• Treadmill and Elliptical exercise machines use a lot of energy but due to their low frequency of use they don’t have much impact on overall energy use.
• Minneapolis has the most plug load usage – both actu and per square foot while Las Vegas has the least.
• Monitors, even though they are one of the least energy intensive items, use the most total energy because there are so many and their long hours of use.
• Installed equipment power density is highest for Denver, followed by Minneapolis and is the least for Las Vegas.
• The big three for installed power density are space heaters, microwave, and coffee machines.
• The big three for actual energy usage are monitors, desktop towers/laptops, and space heaters.
• Work with EIS to aggressively turn off computers and monitors at night wherever possible.
• Complete transition to laptop computers, minimizing desktops.
• Eliminate use of under desk space heaters in favor of foot warmer pads where needed.
• Take into account yearly electrical use when purchasing equipment such as printers and plotters.
• Get more energy efficient monitors.
• Create a culture of shutting down the PC/Laptops & screens completely.
• Use advanced power strips for peripheral load (monitors, task lighting, etc.)
• Implement time based control for common area equipment.