Myrtle Beach hotels and motels are looking to save where they can. In terms of low-cost hotel upgrades to save money, improving lighting efficiency is up near the top for "bang for your buck." Unlike upgrades that require expensive infrastructure changes, updating and upgrading lighting solutions is an easy and affordable way to save energy and money. According to EnergyStar.gov, depending on a hotel or motel's current lighting and electricity needs, converting to "smart" lighting can save up to 50% in energy usage. That's a lot of money! Here's how to do it:
This one seems like a no-brainer. If your hotel isn't currently using LED bulbs, then you should. While many upgraded when incandescent bulbs ceased to be produced, some hotels out there may be using the less-energy efficient CFL, or compact florescent lightbulb. LED, or light emitting diode, uses 75% less energy and lasts 25 times longer than the old-fashioned incandescent. A standard CFL, on the other hand, only uses 25-35% less energy than the incandescent. Even though LEDs are more expensive, they will last a lot longer, and save a lot more energy and money in the long run. LED is definitely the way to go right now.
Why spend money lighting a space when no one is in it? Before sensors, hotel guests were likely to leave in room lighting on all day. Motion sensors in hotel spaces detect movement and the lights turn on. When movement is not detected, the lights go off. This is not only useful in guest rooms, but also is conference areas, lobby restrooms, and other large spaces that use lots of energy for lighting. Sensors can compliment low-light or emergency lighting so spaces are safe but also energy efficient.
Timed or scheduled lighting can be a smart way to cut energy costs. Scheduling lighting only for when it is needed is easily done with today's smart timers. There are plenty of products at all price points for controlling indoor and outdoor lighting. One of the biggest savers is using timers in bathrooms where occupancy times are sporadic and lighting costs can be high. This ensures that expensive bathroom lighting is not accidentally left on when not in use. Small changes like these add up quickly when you have hundreds of rooms.
In Myrtle Beach, we get plenty of hot, sunny days. If spaces can be lit naturally with sunlight, turn the lights off. While this option won't work for all spaces, it is something to consider if you are planning a larger remodel or structural upgrade. Windows, skylights, and light tubes can brighten spaces with natural light and reduce future energy expenses as well. You can also use sensors to transition to your hotel lighting when daylight fades.
Chances are no one knows more about a hotel's energy waste than the people working there day in and day out. Encourage staff to conserve energy and turn off unused or unneeded lighting. Challenge your team to develop energy-saving practices, or incentivize conservation with a special recognition or award. Getting the entire team on board is crucial to saving on energy costs.
Lighting upgrades is one of the easiest and most cost-efficient ways that hotels can save money. Cooper Mechanical Services offers energy audits to hotels looking to curb their energy costs. Our electrical team can handle projects of all sizes and budgets. Please contact us if you are looking to get the most bang for your buck with smart lighting solutions.