Best Energy Practices

  • Every person is expected to be an "energy saver" as well as an "energy consumer." However, as an energy consumer, we can make a difference by taking the following steps to reduce energy consumption in offices, classrooms, residential life buildings, and even at home.

    • Turn off lights when you leave the room.
    • Turn off computers, monitors, speakers, and printers when not in use.
    • Turn off TVs, stereos, and appliances when you leave the area.
    • Unplug all chargers when not in use.
    • Keep doors and windows closed when heating, ventilation, and air- conditioning (HVAC) systems are in use.
    • Close window blinds and angle them up when leaving for the day.
    • While room is occupied, set thermostats to 74-78 degrees for cooling and 68-72 degrees for heating.
    • During summer months, set thermostats to 82-85 degrees and Auto when leaving for the day or weekend; and, leave ceiling fans running at low speed to circulate air.
    • During winter months, set thermostats to 55-60 degrees and Auto when leaving for the day or weekend; and, leave ceiling fans running at medium speed to circulate air.
Image of light switch on wall
Photo of electric meters.
Graphic of circles with dollar signs symbolic of cost savings.

Energy Conservation Audits

  • Several types of energy audits take place during the school year. Each audit reviews the following expectations:

    MORNING TRANSITION AUDIT – The time between totally unoccupied and totally occupied, usually when the first custodian arrives. 

    • Lighting – in areas of the building must remain off until staff or students occupy those areas or to complete morning cleaning that takes place each morning. Custodians are encouraged to allow first staff to turn on their classroom and hallways outside their classroom.
    • Doors – need to be closed to separate early morning occupied areas from unoccupied areas if possible.
    • Vestibule and Exterior Doors – need to remain closed at all times to minimize intrusion of unconditioned outside air into any inside space.
    • Designated Room Equipment – must remain off until that room’s staff member arrives and prepares their room for the day.

    OCCUPIED AUDIT - The time between the start of the school day and the end of the school day.

    • Lighting – in the building that is in an unoccupied area should be turned off. Lights should be turned off or minimized when natural lighting is present.
    • Interior Doors – that separate one thermostat from another must remain closed while HVAC is on.
    • Windows and Exterior Doors – must remain closed at all times to minimize intrusion of unconditioned outside air into any inside space.

    EVENING TRANSITION AUDIT – The time between end of the school day to totally unoccupied, usually when the last custodian leaves the building.

    • Lighting – should be used as needed to manage any approved activities or to complete evening cleaning. Lights are to be turned off when activity or cleaning has been completed and remain off during the unoccupied hours.
    • Exterior Doors, Vestibule Doors and Windows – must remain closed to minimize outside air intrusion.
    • Designated Room Equipment – must remain off after the teacher or staff member has properly shutdown their area for the day. Equipment in all rooms must remain off when the room is unoccupied for the evening. This does not include safety lighting that is required by code to remain on at all times.

    UNOCCUPIED AUDIT - The time between the last custodian leaving the building for the night and the first custodian arriving the next morning.

    • Lighting – inside the building must be off with the exception of inside safety/security lighting and outside building and parking lot lights.
    • Exterior Doors, Vestibule Doors and Room Doors – must remain closed.
    • Designated Room Equipment – must remain off until the next day when the room’s staff member arrives for the day.