Finding energy savings starts by making energy management a priority.
Sustaining those savings and driving further reductions requires building energy management into your company’s culture.
ENERGY STAR can help you get started regardless of the size of your company.
Our small and medium manufacturer (SMM) resources are designed to help you:
Is capital tight? Better operating practices and equipment tune-ups help many manufacturers achieve significant energy savings – at little cost.
Start saving now. Read our easy-to-use guide to identify energy saving opportunities that can be made in your plant.
Need some quick tips? Use our animated tour of energy savings in a manufacturing plant. Share this with your employees to get them thinking about energy savings, too!
Tour a manufacturing plant and find ways
to save energy by clicking on the icon above!
Get started on finding savings. Use the checklists below to begin to identify energy savings in your plant.
Lighting is a significant energy use and cost for most manufacturers, and an area with many opportunities for savings.
|Lighting Focus Area||Action Items|
|Are unoccupied areas lit?||See Section 4.1 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Are lights left on during non-work hours?|
|Are parts of the facility over-lit?|
|Is older, inefficient technology in use?|
|Are exit lights using old technology?|
|Can daylighting be used?|
Heating, Ventilation and Air Condition (HVAC) Systems
HVAC systems can be a significant energy load for small manufacturing plants. It is important to keep these systems operating efficiently.
|HVAC Focus Area||Action Items|
|Are temperature set points turned back during non-production hours?||See Section 4.2 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Are temperature set points at the right level?|
|Is duct work leaking?|
|Is the building well insulated?|
|Are HVAC systems programmed correctly and operating according to manufacturer’s instructions?|
|Are coils cleaned regularly?|
|Are air filters changed appropriately and regularly?|
|Is older, inefficient technology being used?|
Motors, widely used in manufacturing, are found in process equipment, HVAC systems, air compressors, and other systems.
|Motor Focus Area||Action Items|
|Are motors properly sized?||See Section 4.3 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Are motors maintained?|
|Can adjustable or variable speed drives be installed?|
|Can older, less efficient motors be replaced?|
|Do you have a motor management program?|
Did you know that compressed air is the most expensive plant utility? Make sure you're not wasting air!
|Compressed Air Focus Areas||Action Items|
|Are hoses and lines regularly checked and repaired for leaks?||See Section 4.4 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Is the system properly maintained?|
|Is compressed air used only for critical uses?|
|Is the system over-pressurized or over-sized?|
|Can pressure be stabilized or reduced?|
|Are too many air compressors running to meet the load?|
|Is compressor performance monitored regularly?|
Assessments of industrial steam systems find, on average, 10% to 15% annual energy savings.
|Steam System Focus Areas||Action Items|
|Are controls in use to monitor oxygen levels, flue gas leaks, and air intake?||See Section 4.6 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Are the boiler and distribution system properly sized?|
|Are distribution systems properly insulated?|
|Are steam traps regularly checked for failure and replaced?|
|Is steam condensate re-used?|
|Is heat recovered from flue gas to preheat boiler feed water?|
|Are older, less efficient boilers in use?|
Improving operating practices for energy efficiency is an excellent source of no-cost savings opportunities.
|Steam System Focus Areas||Action Items|
|Can idling equipment, machines or systems be turned off?||See Section 4.1 – 4.8 in Managing Your Energy: An ENERGY STAR Guide for Identifying Energy Savings in Manufacturing Plants|
|Can startup and shutdown times for equipment, machines or systems be reduced?|
|Are systems and machinery properly commissioned?|
|Are systems optimized for production?|
Free Software Evaluation Tools
Want to evaluate your systems further? The Department of Energy (DOE) offers free software tools to help you evaluate motor, fan, steam and other systems to identify energy savings opportunities.
Visit DOE’s Industrial Facility Tool Suite.
Take advantage of ENERGY STAR qualified products to help you reduce your energy use. Office equipment, water coolers, computers, vending machines and more all help to reduce the energy load.
Upgrades and improvements to plant systems and equipment will likely require capital. The good news is these projects often have short payback periods, increase plant productivity, and are generally low risk investments with guaranteed returns.
Some states and utilities offer rebates and financial incentives that offset equipment costs. Current federal tax incentives can also bring down the cost of equipment upgrades. Read more about these resources and assistance programs to offset costs.