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1. Update your building's lighting to make sure it uses energy efficiently.

Change existing light bulbs for compact fluorescent bulbs, which use up

to 75 percent less power. Put lights on a timer so they automatically

shut off at night or when you are away.

2. Make sure your building is well insulated, so you are not wasting energy

on heating or cooling. Start by checking that insulation is up to code,

particularly in unheated spaces; if you have walls that border

uninsulated outbuildings, make sure that they are well protected.

Insulate pipes that pass through cold spaces to ensure that you don't

lose heat.

3. Reduce your building's electricity use. Plug groups of appliances into a

smart power strip that uses a timer mechanism to turn them all off at a

certain time. Even when they are turned off, electronics often have

phantom power use when plugged directly into the wall. Set computers

to turn off after being inactive for a certain time and eliminate screen

savers, which use as much energy as active screens. If you have the

capital, invest in a timer system that switches off the power to

nonessential systems each night.

4. Turn down your heating and cooling system when your building is not

occupied. By dropping the heat by 10 degrees over eight hours, you

can reduce energy use by 10 percent. You can also turn your water

heater off when the building is empty over vacations. You should also

make sure that your heating and cooling systems are maintained

regularly so they use energy efficiently and last longer.

5. Reduce the amount of water you use for normal operations throughout

the building. Fix leaks and replace your existing fixtures with low-flow

options. On average, low-flow shower heads save over 7 gallons per

minute. You can also use dual-flush toilets.

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