10 Wintertime Money-Saving Tips for Businesses

Cold weather can be costly for businesses. To help you get through the chilly season, we’ve come up with some smart business tips that can help you save money. Use one or all of them to reap the greatest rewards!

Slippery Sidewalks Can Lead to Potential Expenses

De-ice sidewalks, parking lots and other outdoor pedestrian areas. This proactive safety step will reduce the potentially costly risks of employees or visitors getting injured from slips and falls. Shoveling is the first step in de-icing but it may not solve all of the slippery spots. Rock salt is a favorite for melting ice. It is most effective in sunshine and loses its efficacy as the temperatures drop. Many people are concerned about the environmental impact of rock salt and recommend using calcium magnesium acetate (CMA) as an eco-friendly option.

Remember, business insurance can cover you for these and other risks, too — talk to an American Family Insurance agent for details.

Prevent Ice Dams and Damage

Avoid costly damage from ice dams by ventilating your attic, insulating your attic floor, and installing an ice-and-water barrier under your roof covering. A roof rake is an inexpensive and effective way of preventing ice dams. By removing snow from the bottom portion of the roof, water has a clear runoff path and ice dams are less likely to form.

Use Energy Star Appliances

Updating your appliances can help you save money, energy and be more efficient. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), efficient appliances use 10-50% less energy and water than standard models. ENERGY STAR® certified models let you know you’re getting top-of-the-line equipment with an eco-friendly focus.

Don't Chill Your Workers Out

To reduce heating costs, lower the thermostat in work areas, but not too much. A study from Cornell University indicated that office workers are most productive at 77 degrees Fahrenheit, and that employers could save $2 per worker per hour by "raising the temperature to a more comfortable thermal zone." During non-work hours, turn the heat down to around 55 degrees to save on heating costs.

Have a "Closed Door” Policy

Don’t waste energy and money heating the outside. Encourage your employees to keep exterior and freight doors closed as much as possible to lower heating bills.

Let the Sun in During the Daytime

Open curtains and window blinds to maximize the amount of warmth generated by direct sunlight in work areas. But remember to close window coverings at night to keep the heat in. If you want to take this tip a step further, invest in energy efficient windows for your business and enjoy the rewards all year long.

Insulate Whatever You Can for Protection

Insulation is a great way to protect your business, your employees and your bottom line. Insulate water heaters and supply pipes to avoid wasting energy and money. Well-insulated pipes and fire sprinkler systems can also prevent costly water damage if they freeze and burst. Ceiling and wall insulation can lower monthly utility bills and keep everyone comfy.

Seal Your Windows and Doors

Don’t let drafts ruin your day. Ensure that windows and doors are closed, properly caulked and not cracked or broken. Something as small as a little weather-stripping can go a long way toward keeping your interior draft-free and cozy.

Decorate in Moderation

Do you plan on having outdoor holiday light displays at your business? Save energy by using a lighting timer to shut them off during the day. Use LED holiday lights, which consume 99% less energy than traditional lights. Stay timely and take your light displays down right after the holidays.

Good Maintenance Can Equal Savings

Staying on top of routine maintenance around your business can help you save money in the long run. Ensure that your heating and ventilation systems are well-maintained and finely tuned. Keep ducts clean and replace filters.

The best way to save money during the cold months is to prepare for it. Winterizing your business gives you a head start when Mother Nature comes calling. And being proactive is the best way to protect your business, your employees and your customers.

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Related Topics: Safe Business Tips , Workplace Wellness