• Hamish Sherlock

Locking up for Lockdown

As we enter the midway point of lockdown and talk of an extension is in the news, here’s our quick guide to ensuring you leave your hospitality premises as resource efficient as possible over lockdown and avoid running into any problems when starting up again. Some of these tips might sound simple, but they’re easily missed and could make a big difference until we can once again open our doors.

Heating – If there are spaces where you can turn off completely, do so. You may need some spaces to keep from turning into a scene from Dr Zhivago and it’s always good to keep some heat running through the pipes, but make sure your thermostats in this area are turned down as low as possible. Recommended frost protection level is 5 degrees C, so try and get as close to this as possible. Costs rise by roughly 8% for every 1 degree of heating so it will be worth a quick scan of all rooms, radiators and thermostats. And wherever you do want to leave heating on, make sure all curtains as well as doors are closed to keep the heat in and the bills down.

Lighting – All lighting should of course be switched off, so make sure you check those often forgotten store rooms and distant corridors. Security lights are best left on, and with a bit of time to kill at the moment it’s worth looking into installing motion sensors on outside lights if you don’t already have them in place. This will be of benefit after as well as during lockdown.

Equipment on charge and standby – handheld phones, PDQ’s, sales tills, service tablets, T.V’s, kettles, ovens, microwaves all just sitting there with that wee red light on, switch them off at the source.

Fridges & Freezers – consolidate as much produce as you can into as few of these as possible. Use the chance to defrost and clean the ones you can, and don’t forget the drinks & cellar fridges or A/C units, you won’t be needing cold lager and wine for a few weeks – unless it’s at home!

Water - All water-using equipment should be isolated at source to prevent water leakage. If possible, isolate the main incoming supply. Hidden leaks are much more common than you think, so this is also a good time to check your water meter on a weekly basis to see if there is any change while nothing is in use. You can’t isolate at the main supply if you plan to do this, but if after a couple of weeks you are happy that the meter hasn’t changed then it’s sensible to turn off at the main supply in case of any issues whilst no one is on site that might not be picked up for straight away.

Waste – check all your waste containers and outside wheelie bins are empty – who doesn’t love a good opportunity to give the bins a clean? But most importantly check in with your contractor to put a hold on scheduled collections, you may still get charged for these even if there’s nothing to pick up.

Maintenance - Providing you can work within government guidelines and have the staff available, the shutdown is a perfect opportunity to complete any outstanding maintenance tasks. Remember - dirty equipment is much more likely to break down or seize up the first time it’s started up again.

This is also a great time to train your staff and upskill them in this downtime. Fifty Shades Greener South is offering free access to our online ‘Know Your Numbers’ course, an excellent chance to learn the basic principles of becoming a Green Leader including:

- The three pillars of sustainability

- How your business impacts the environment

- How to measure and monitor that impact

- Establish your carbon footprint and Green Key Performance Indicators

Employees can do this at home and come back to work ready to fulfil the PM’s mission to build back better… and GREENER!

To start your free course CLICK HERE

Hamish Sherlock

Fifty Shades Greener South

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