Keep the air cool and cost-effective in your business this summer

One might assume that because winter’s over and the heating is finally off, that energy costs will take a dip but this is not necessarily the case! There’s nothing more uncomfortable than working in a scorching hot office, which is why businesses tend to crank the air conditioning with little hesitation – and cold air costs! But there are ways to help your business save money this summer:

  • Service and repair (if necessary) your current air conditioning system, to keep it running smoothly and efficiently; preventing inconvenient costs from cropping up throughout the summer months.
  • Keep the cool air in by insulating your business premises, and if using air conditioning remember to keep windows and doors shut to keep the cool air from flowing out.
  • According to the Energy Department, you can save as much as 10 per cent a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back 3°-4°C for 8 hours a day from its normal setting.
  • The days are longer, which presents the perfect opportunity for businesses to take advantage of natural lighting. Fluorescent bulbs use around 75 per cent less energy than the standard light bulbs but apart from that, why not figure out where the sun will be and when, and rearrange the layout of your business space accordingly? Move desks around so that they are not in direct line with the main window when the sun is beaming in throughout the afternoon. This way you can keep your blinds open and your lights off.
  • Using a fan can help increase the efficiency of an air conditioning system.
  • If you’re not using an air conditioner, open windows and doors to ventilate the office and relax business dress to keep staff cool and happy at work.
  • Turn off anything that creates heat when not in use, such as printers and monitors.

For more excellent tips on how to cut down on energy costs this summer, read “Summer energy tips: How to cut down on costs” on

If you’d like further information, feel free to contact the CH Systems team on 0208 302 8149 or

How innovative installation makes your business energy efficient

One of the biggest energy-related challenges for owners of businesses that operate out of commercial buildings – schools, restaurants, supermarkets, offices, gyms etc. – is finding a heating and hot water system that can keep up with the demand, at a reasonable price. Saving energy, for ethical reasons as well as money-saving targets, is no mean feat. But there are ways…

Thinking outside of the box with innovative installations is one way to cut overheads. Heating manufacturer Vokèra is currently working with UK business owners to reduce usage and costs, as reported by Two recent projects include the replacement of a 43-year-old oil roof-top boiler with a floor standing modular unit, which enabled the building in question to be heated to temperature in a mere 20 minutes.

Another project saw oil boilers replaced with the energy-efficient CondexaPRO, alongside new insulation, high-efficient glazing and LED lighting; the building now saves almost 980,000 kWh per annum.

Cascade configuration is also a good way to ensure that the output of the heating system meets the demand of a large property. Boilers that have been designed for modular systems will work well in commercial applications. If the demand within the building is high, then all boilers in the system can be working together, but, if the heating requirement drops, each appliance can be individually controlled and turned off to match the lower demand.

Vokèra is just one brand committed to helping business save money with energy efficient installations, there are also others – Worcester/Bosch, Reznor, Vaillant, (to mention a few), which are all committed to making energy efficiency commercially viable for both smaller and larger businesses.

If you’d like further information on how to make energy efficiency commercially viable for your business, feel free to contact the CH Systems team on 0208 302 8149 or

Source: – “Making energy efficiency commercially viable”

How Brexit will impact energy policy and what this means for business owners

Brexit is happening and history is in the making but what does this mean for UK energy policy and the multitude of UK businesses that are affected by the potential impact of bills and tariffs?

The internet is awash with opinion but according to Nick Butler, visiting Professor and Chair of the Kings Policy Institute at Kings College London, writing for the Financial Times: “The UK’s exit from the EU should have very little impact on the energy business. The price of oil, gas and coal is set by international markets not by the institutions in Brussels.”

Butler goes on to say that the energy union proposed by the EU is much more focused on developing common infrastructure and in ensuring that there is an open market across Europe. Presumably we’ll no longer be a part of this but “there is no reason to think that the interconnection and trading links which already exist on straightforward commercial terms will not continue regardless of a UK exit from the European institutions,” says Butler.

It is, however, likely that the impact of Brexit will be felt less in terms of British interaction with Europe than within the UK itself but nothing is certain until the shape of the new government takes form. Which is all good and well but what business owners really want to know is will they have to pay more? Will the weakening sterling send energy prices into a tailspin?

Butler summarises:

“Brexit is unlikely to change much, if anything, in our energy relationships with our neighbours. Trade will go on. Oil and gas will still continue to be priced according to market circumstances at the global level. But within the UK’s own energy mix new ministers could radically alter the detailed balance. For investors this is another level of uncertainty to be added to all the risks around economic growth and the value of the currency. They will get no clear answers until a new government is formed in October.”

So ‘no’ (energy tariffs shouldn’t be subject to any sort of dramatic increase)…but this is dependent on new leadership and direction from government. It’s a waiting game, in other words.

Damian Kahya, writing for Greenpeace’s Energy Desk, has another opinion; arguing that Brexit could add billions to the cost of fuel in the UK, according to an analysis of government import data.

Kayha says that the data for 2015 suggests that a fall in the value of the pound could add up to £4 billion to the cost of oil, gas, coal and electricity imports, driving up costs for consumers and businesses.

If Brexit manages to wipe 20 per cent off the value of the sterling, as has been predicted, households and businesses, which spend nearly £21 billion a year on imported energy (as per coal, oil and gas UK trade data for 2015), could accrue and extra £4 billion in costs – the additional amount (20 per cent) needed to make up for the devalued sterling.

What this means, in practical terms is that: “Assuming that fed through the households and business – in the form of higher energy bills, fuel costs and more expensive goods and services – it would add up to £150 to their annual spending.”

Uncertainty is a frustrating thing but it’s good to be aware and consider all points of view – whilst getting on and doing business as usual. It’s also worth noting that both of the perspectives in this post are subject to various provisos and variables so it’d be worth checking out the original articles (see below sources).

If you’d like further information, feel free to contact the CH Systems team on 0208 302 8149 or

Sources: – “Brexit: the impact on UK energy policy and – “How Brexit could drive up UK energy bills.

Businesses prioritise energy security when choosing providers, according to new research

With the cold well underway and heaters assuredly on, there is one thing that is occupying the minds of business owners as tariffs tick over, and that’s energy security. According to new research by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), 73 per cent of 550 business leaders and 2,300 households rate security of supply as a crucial energy objective for the UK.

The majority of businesses (96 per cent) are concerned about keeping energy bills affordable and, interestingly, more than half of businesses (57 per cent) believe that the UK’s energy security is worse than it was five years ago. The resounding scepticism of UK business owners is emphasised by the fact that 53 per cent of respondents cite ‘energy company profits’ as the primary reason for price hikes. It’s thus no big surprise that a mere 38 per cent of businesses agree that energy efficiency is the best solution to ensuring that energy costs remain affordable (smaller bonuses, maybe?). Another solution hazarded by business leaders who participated in CBI’s research is; more competition in the market – if energy providers are vying for customers, they’ll have to offer the best deal in an effort to sustain their client base.

Perhaps a lesser known fact is that provider profits accounted for only 4.3 per cent of an average bill in 2012, which suggests that other than the solutions already highlighted by business owners themselves, it seems that industry players might benefit from an action prioritising greater transparency and honest conversation. Being real about energy objectives and how they relate to business is a good way to encourage a mutual support network between companies and energy providers.

And how do business owners feel about the UK’s aim to tackle climate change? In spite of the fact that change in policy and the practical implementation thereof might affect energy security, most businesses (70 per cent) support renewable energy initiatives and other such schemes that hope to minimise the country’s carbon footprint. While 60 per cent of business leaders believe that taking action now to cut carbon emissions will deliver long-term economic opportunity, one in three businesses disagree (32 per cent), suggesting more must be done to communicate the importance of, and opportunity presented by, the low-carbon transition.

The research does a great job of drawing attention to some very real concerns relating to energy efficiency – or lack thereof, according to various respondents. The good news is that there’s a lot to be done and everyone has a part to play.

For more information on how to make your business’s energy more efficient and more affordable, feel free to contact the CH Systems team on 0208 302 8149 or

Source: – “Short-term thinking on energy risks damaging investment – CBI”