11 Ways Businesses Can Improve Heating Efficiency
Posted on 2nd July 2019
At Crown Oil, we are trusted by businesses of kinds across the UK to supply gas oil regularly and on time. At the same time, we also want to help businesses – for whom gas oil or red diesel are essential – to be as efficient and eco-friendly as possible.
Recently released data by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that UK consumption of gas oil, has been increasing steadily since 2013, rising from 6.66 Million tonnes of oil equivalent (Mtoe) to 7.80 MToe in 2017.
Furthermore, according to additional research by carbon-neutral authority Carbon Trust, 75% of an industrial unit’s heat is lost through the building fabric, including 35% from ventilation and the air filtration system. Meaning whatever a business spends on heating, 75% of that energy is lost and not put to use.
Combine this with the latest available Government data which shows that in the business sector heating consumes around 59,300 GWh/year – and with a total of 161,060 GWh per year of energy consumed by the non-domestic sector, that amounts to 37%, or just over a third of the total stock of energy is consumed.
So with such a startling amount of energy gone to waste, we’ve highlighted some ways that businesses that are based in office buildings to keep that energy from dissipating to the wider environment – saving your business some money and helping the environment, by reducing carbon emissions.
In light of the Government’s recent pledge to make the UK carbon neutral by 2050, taking charge of carbon emissions is ever-important.
Crown Oil reveals its advice in the wake of the Government’s pledge to cut carbon emissions to net-zero by 2050. As a result, the business sector’s need to reduce carbon footprints is more important than ever.
Invest in building management systems
Automation is a large step towards heating optimisation, as you can control that only the required amount of energy is being used at any point. With HVAC systems contributing 35% of energy loss, this is the biggest culprit, highlighting how important minimising heat waste from this source is.
Upgrade heating system
Ensuring your office has invested in a central heating system with a high-efficiency grade will set you on the right foot in terms of reducing wasted energy to keep the building warm.
Doors and windows contribute to draughtiness in every building, from homes to offices, to even factories. Mitigate this wasted heat by installing draught excluders around doors and windows.
According to the Carbon Trust’s research, an estimated 26% of heat is lost from windows, so double and even triple glazing can seriously improve a window’s ability to retain heat, so it is imperative that your office building has at least double-glazing installed if it not already.
Roof, wall and underfloor insulation
Your office building’s roof will be the cause of about 22% of the heat that is lost from your building, so ensuring ceilings are well insulated should be a priority to keeping the office warm and spending less doing it. When you add in wasted heat from walls and floors too, that only adds to the amount of heat that is lost.
Your pipes will be a source of heat loss before it has a chance to reach a radiator, so appropriate insulation around your pipes will maximise the energy that is transferred to the office.
One often-overlooked way to positively impact your heating efficiency is the fuel used. Industrial heating oil (IHO) is a drop-in alternative to red diesel, that is made specifically for commercial boiler applications. IHO has the same properties as the fuel, while also offering a higher heat output per litre, saving you money in the long-term.
If your boiler is leaking water, it will need to work harder to heat water. Attending to any leaks will ensure that it is heating the office at an optimal efficiency.
Check boiler for sludge
Over time, dirt enters and contaminates your boiler’s fuel tank, forming sludge which severely inhibits your heating system’s ability to heat effectively. A yearly non-destructive test is suggested to keep your system clean and running efficiently – this will also involve testing your fuel storage tank and polishing the fuel if necessary. Crown Oil Environmental are experts in offering these services.
Bleed air from radiators
With no system being perfect, over time air enters your system and builds up in the radiator, preventing the heated water from rising up.. A yearly bleed is suggested to keep radiators operating efficiently and keep the office warm without burning your gas oil at a fast rate.
Boiler pressure levels
Similar maintenance that is essential for an efficiently warmed office, is regularly checking boiler pressure levels. Low pressure results in wasted heat as water is not efficiently pumped around the heating system. On the other end of the spectrum, high pressure is dangerous to the system and overworks the heater.