Posts Tagged ‘conservation’

Kitchen Conservation

July 27, 2012

From single family homes to huge commercial enterprises, people across the country are doing their part to conserve energy and water. Whether they feel it is their duty to help the planet or they simply want to save money on energy costs, most restaurants have joined this trend by revamping their kitchens and dining areas.

Some have done it by overhauling the whole restaurant and replacing everything with new energy efficient equipment. Others have simply taken it one item at a time, and replaced what needed replacing with more energy efficient models. Either way, any restaurant that intends to remain socially responsible and save money on overhead costs should seriously consider making energy efficiency a priority.

Plan Ahead

If an establishment is not in a position to completely replace all of its equipment at once, owners can still do their part to ensure that the restaurant is working its way toward energy efficiency. The best way to do this is to create a replacement plan for all of the equipment in the restaurant. That way if an item needs replacing, the decision for what to replace it with (hopefully a more energy-efficient item) has already been made. This will ensure that if an item goes out unexpectedly, the cook or manager on duty will not simply order a duplicate of the old item. Therefore, bit by bit, the kitchen will receive new, energy efficient equipment added as needed.

Owners can look for small, simple ways to contribute to their restaurant’s overall efficiency. For instance, they can consider using low-flow spray valves in their kitchen sinks. These are fairly inexpensive, and they save up to three gallons of water per minute. They actually work better than traditional spray valves because they use air pressure to make the spray stronger.

Also, they could consider replacing light bulbs in both the kitchen and dining areas with more energy efficient bulbs, or even convert the dining areas to have an atmosphere in which low lighting would be appropriate.

Big Money-Savers

One of the most important items that many restaurants are choosing to replace first is their refrigeration units. Agencies that rate the energy efficiency of various items and appliances, like Energy Star, have done the most testing on refrigerators so there are huge lists of possible brands and styles. Almost all refrigerator companies have multiple choices of size and style in their energy efficient lines from sleek stainless steel refrigerators to glass front options for dining areas.

Also, there are options for almost any price range, so even small eateries can afford to make an upgrade.

Restaurants should also consider water-saving dishwashers for their kitchen. This contributes to water conservation by using significantly less water and energy conservation by reducing the amount of hot water needed. Energy Star estimates that restaurants that use water-saving dishwashers can save up to $850 per year in energy costs and $200 per year in water costs.

Restaurants can further save money from water bills by installing low flow toilets in guest bathrooms.