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The Best Ways to Improve Energy Efficiency in Your Commercial Building Posted by Best Access Doors Canada on 17th Jan 2024

With our nation's commitment to net zero emissions by 2050, improved energy efficiency in commercial buildings should be at the forefront of every engineer, building manager, and general contractor's plans. For architects, the 2030 Challenge is also a guiding light for sustainable design and development.

Of course, this task is easier said than done; however, the overall outcome contributes to fewer greenhouse gas emissions, making sustainable building practices the responsibility of all involved.

There are also tremendous financial incentives that positively impact your bottom line. 3M, a global powerhouse in the manufacturing sector, stands as a testament to the power of sustainable building practices. With a commitment to reducing its carbon footprint, 3M has maintained production in accordance with ISO 50001 Management Systems Standards, upholding a superior standard.

The result? $13,500,000 USD (CAD 18,019,733) in savings over a three-year span, in addition to a reduction of 330,000 in total carbon emissions from a 4.5% energy performance. By improving carbon emissions by just 1.5% a year, 3M yielded exceptional results across the board, and their process can be implemented by all concerned.

Improving Energy Efficiency

A standard procedure for ISO 50001 is the measurement of greenhouse emissions to manage and limit them. What can be measured can be managed, and this is the guiding philosophy of the system. Central to this is the process of benchmarking, which involves gathering records of previous building carbon emissions.

By maintaining a record, you can compare and contrast emissions year by year and compare them to similar building emissions within the industry to establish a baseline.

Benchmarking is critical to identifying trends that signify periods of excessive output of greenhouse gases to manage and control them more efficiently. By comparing your year-by-year results to industry standards and identifying trends, you will be in a much better position to implement a plan for sustainability.

3M applied this benchmarking strategy, guided by ISO 50001 standards, and implemented improvements to 30 facilities, spanning seven countries ranging from:

  • Compressor and HVAC equipment optimization
  • Installing co-generation systems as combined heat and power units
  • Establishing sources for renewable energy, such as solar power systems

In addition to several others. This process of benchmarking and implementation serves as a blueprint and industry standard for success.

Maximizing HVAC Efficiency

You and all the buildings and homes in Canada contribute to 18% of all aggregate greenhouse emissions. In regard to commercial buildings, heating and cooling accounts for 55% of total emissions, making the HVAC systems that power them a vital consideration.

Simply put, inefficient HVAC systems will not only result in increased maintenance costs due to excessive upkeep, repairs, and replacements but also affect your utility statements. To make matters worse, inefficient HVAC systems are the main culprit for the emissions of some of the most detrimental greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, such as carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and fluorocarbons.

Installing the highest-quality HVAC systems from the outset bears a more significant upfront cost but will yield massive savings in the long run. Quality HVAC systems do wonders for the overall health of your buildings with:

  • Better noise reduction, for less noise pollution
  • HEPA air filters for better air quality
  • Better zoning capabilities for maximum airflow

Regular maintenance and upkeep of HVAC systems also ensure your investment's longevity and efficiency. Routine maintenance on HVAC systems, including changing air filters, in addition to regular cleaning of evaporators, condenser coils, and other internal components, preserves your investment.

For these tasks, it is essential to use the right access products, such as the BAC-PAL Insulated Aluminum Access Door by Best Access Doors Canada. As a featherlight access panel, BAC-PAL is hassle-free to fit and install, making it ideal for installations in new and retrofit applications.

This aluminum access panel comes in various sizes to suit your requirements, boasting 1" insulation for exceptional thermal resistance, reducing heat and noise transfer between components.

With durable neoprene gasketing adhered to its perimeter, this model eliminates the permeation of dust, debris, and other contaminants that affect HVAC systems and air quality. With a highly durable and secure continuous piano hinge, BAC-PAL provides an extension beyond 90 degrees for a wider field of view and more thorough inspections for maintenance and installations.

BAC-PAL is the ideal companion to your HVAC systems, and this powerhouse is an overlooked factor that indirectly makes a difference to your building's overall energy efficiency. BAC-PAL is also LEED-certified by the U.S. Green Building Council for commercial interiors, contributing to potential credits, tax benefits, and improved HVAC performance for better energy efficiency.

Weather stripping and caulking also contribute to a well-sealed, airtight building envelope, preventing air infiltration and further preventing heat loss and gain for improved comfort and enhanced HVAC performance.

Choosing the Right Products

Overtasking your central heating control system directly results in increased energy consumption, greater greenhouse gas emissions, and higher monthly bills. Outfitting your building with ENERGY STAR-certified products, ranging from appliances to electronics, lighting, and thermostats, upholds the highest standard for energy efficiency.

Specifically, ENERGY STAR-certified doors and windows minimize heat loss between rooms, also limiting air leakage while making it easier for HVAC systems to balance and maintain a comfortable room temperature. Once again, the BAC-PAL Insulated Aluminum Access Door excels in energy-efficient environments, contributing an R-value of 3.18 to your structures.

Bringing It All Together

Canada is at the frontier of sustainable building practices, and as a member of the commercial construction industry, you are central to our national ambitions. Measurement is the first step to management, which ultimately leads to more control and savings.

Add benching marking to your procedure to identify weaknesses that are contributing to excess energy consumption and greater emissions. Weatherize your structures with stripping and caulking to limit the infiltration and permeation of draft airflow, which makes balancing air temperature less predictable and more difficult.

Finally, invest in the right HVAC system and enhance it with the use of ENERGY STAR-certified products and access solutions such as the BAC-PAL Insulated Aluminum Access Door.

Taking all these steps and implementing them with the right strategy will yield cheaper bills, higher profits, and a greener future.

If you want to learn more about our sustainable access solutions, feel free to connect with our team. You can trust Best Access Doors Canada to provide the best products available. We also have warehouses near you and can deliver directly to your job site.

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