Energy Efficiency in Churches
Energy efficiency is closely tied in with sustainable design movements such as LEED and Green Council. If you are looking for energy efficiency to complete your LEED Certification for your church, that makes sense as LEED Certification is a hot item these days. We have design members who are LEED accredited and can make your renovation ‘Green’.
However, if you are interested in energy efficiency to lower your electricity bill, you may want to run the numbers first. The reason is many churches don’t use the bulk of their facilities except for a few hours a week. For many buildings the size of a church that are used 50 to 60 hours a week or more, energy efficient devices will pay for themselves after about 3 years or more depending on certain factors. But for a church that uses the bulk of their facilities 3 hours a week, it may take 40 to 60 years for the devices to pay for themselves as they are often quite costly. These devices will most likely be replaced long before you will see a return on your investment. For some churches, energy efficient devices will make them a return on their investment in the shorter run, and for many it won’t.
The really good news is that LED lights, which greatly reduce the energy expenditure of a building, have come down in price drastically in the last decade. These lights have the additional benefit of anywhere from 50,000 to 100,000 hour lamp lives. This keeps churches from having to change bulbs that are 20 - 40 feet in the air every few years.