Energy in Education - Schools report savings!


 ‘A school I visited had lights on in corridors where there was plenty of daylight. Switching off the lights in those areas did not make a difference to the light levels. It was calculated that installing daylight sensors would save €1,500 a year on their lighting bill.’


Due to being on the incorrect electricity tariff one school was paying €3,500 a year in penalties on their bills. By calling their electricity supplier and moving to a slightly higher tariff they were able to eliminate these more costly penalties.’

IT Equipment

Most schools have their PC's set to go into standby when not in use during the day and overnight. PC's left in standby mode still use electricity while they use no electricity when in hibernate mode. A school visited recently could save €1,344 per year by making this small change.’

Sinead Feeney, FDT Consulting Engineers & Project Managers Ltd, SEAI Energy Advisor.


During a site visit I saw that photocopiers in the school had been left open after use by staff members. This meant that the motors and lights were left running on full power all day. Closing all photocopiers after use would reduce the cost of running these machines by 70% and could save €300 on electricity costs. Projectors are often left on standby mode so they should be switched off over extended idle periods.

Noel Burns, Consulteco, SEAI Energy Advisor.


 Time clocks

 By installing 7-day time clocks on two vending machines with non-perishable foodstuffs and switching off during holidays, one education centre I visited could save €500 per annum.

Plug in radiators

A single plug in 1.5kW radiator could consume over €25 of electricity within 100 hours or within 3 weeks. One such plug-in radiator could consume as much as €200 worth of electricity in a year.

Night time electricity use

 A primary school I visited was consuming 41% (or €2,200 per annum) of its electricity at night when the building was unoccupied. The school does not have storage heating so what was left plugged in? It seems that 3 water cooling units and a wastewater treatment pump running 24/7 may have been, for a large part, the cause. The water cooling units should be put on 7-day timers and switched off during holidays, and the wastewater treatment supplier should be consulted to see if running hours can be reduced.

 Raoul Empey, Authentic Energy Management Services, SEAI Energy Advisor.


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