With chill settling in across most of the country, hotel owners and operators have yet to see the worst energy bills predicted to be 35 percent or higher than last winter's. The hikes can be minimized through an effective preventive maintenance (PM) program.

A mid-winter PM strategy should emphasize areas where improper sealing allows heat to escape. Weather-strip and seal around all doors and windows. Examine air ductwork for leaks and repair where appropriate. Also check HVAC controls for proper calibration, regularly change filters and inspect system insulation for moisture. Replace insulation if necessary. Check air handlers regularly; improperly maintained, they can waste up to 32 percent of the energy they consume.

In guestrooms, install energy management systems that power down HVAC equipment when guests are out. Use fluorescent lighting where possible, as compact fluorescent bulbs use 80 percent less energy than incandescent ones. Dust lamps regularly.

Install flow control into all taps and showers. Insulate hot water pipes and keep hot water systems as near as possible to where most frequent use occurs.

Check electrical systems for loose connections or poor motor conditions. In the laundry room, clean dryer lint screens at least once a day. In the kitchen, clean interior oven walls to improve heat transfer, and regularly clean grease and food particles from exhaust hoods. If you have an indoor pool, monitor pool temperatures frequently to ensure thermostats are working correctly. Also clean filters and strainer baskets.

An effective PM program this winter can keep energy costs to a minimum, extend the life span of your valuable equipmen, reduce labor and repair costs and keep guests and staff warm and content.

Mark Sokol is director of product marketing for Dunedin, FL-based Mintek Mobile Data Solutions, whose solutions are used in full-service properties ranging from 140 rooms to more than 2,000. Call 727-734-9175 or e-mail For more information on energy management, use the reader service card in the back of the magazine to contact these companies: Amana Heating & Air Conditioning, circle 14; INNCOM International, circle 99; ;Lodging Technology Corporation, circle 24; Mintek, circle 97.

Reprints and Licensing
© 2014 Penton Media Inc.

Acceptable Use Policy
blog comments powered by Disqus

Most Recent

More Recent Articles

Career Center

Quick Job Search
Enter Keyword(s):
Enter a City:

Select a State:

Select a Category:
Franchise Fact File Top Brands
Brand Company Basics Top Management Companies
Owners & Operators Industry Consultants
Industry Associations Industry Events
Design Firms Purchasing Companies
Top Ownership Groups

Click here to view all of the Lodging Hospitality Photo Galleries

Accor Best Western
Carlson Rezidor Choice
Hilton Hyatt
IHG La Quinta
Marriott Starwood
Vantage Wyndham

Free Product Information
News and Trends for the Hotel, Motel, and Hospitality Markets.

Lodging Hospitality eReport
Lodging Hospitality electronic newsletters are FREE to requested subscribers.

Lodging Hospitality Resource Center
The Lodging Hospitality Resource Center is the ultimate resource to find products and services to build, equip, and renovate hotels, motels and resorts.

Subscribe / Renew
Visit our subscription center to subscribe or renew your subscription to Lodging Hospitality.

Visit our webinars page to view all our upcoming and on demand webinars.

Visit our White Papers page to view all our current White Papers.