The Pro-Line Building Blog

Save Money with an Energy-Efficient Commercial Building

Posted by Bill Maschmeier on Aug 31, 2020 4:21:14 PM


Are you getting ready to build your first commercial space or office building? Maybe you’re in the consideration stage right now and are doing preliminary research to learn more. Either way, you’ve come to the right place.

Making sure your commercial property is built with energy efficiency in mind is crucial if you want to make a cost-effective investment. When choosing building materials, you have several important factors to keep in mind. We'll help guide you in selecting materials wisely so you can obtain maximum cost benefits over time.


Factors That Will Help You Save Money on Utility Bills

Commercial buildings can require a lot of energy to operate, which makes it imperative to build with energy efficiency in mind so you can cut down on costs later. For a good return on investment, it’s essential to choose products, materials, and equipment that are not only energy efficient but also durable.

Let’s look at some of the areas where business owners can make smart choices to cut energy costs and conserve energy by installing quality, energy-efficient products.



Installing windows in your commercial building will allow you to conserve energy by using natural light for heating and lighting. For maximum energy efficiency, choose double-pane or triple-pane windows, which provide an addition layer (or two) that adds insulation to further cut down on heating and cooling costs. You may also consider high performance glass windows, which can change tint to help manage how much light and heat enter your space. Skylights are another great way to add additional light.

Once you're in your building, position employees strategically throughout the office space to utilize natural light to its fullest potential. Be sure to turn off any lights that are unnecessary during the daytime to see how much you can shave off your energy bills!


Garage Doors

Garage doors are often the largest openings to buildings, so it’s vital that they’re energy efficient. Look for doors with a high R-value and low U-value. Doors with higher R-value are better insulated, cutting down on the transmission of hot and cold air. Whereas U-value measures the flow of heat through the door so the lower the U-value, the less energy flow and energy loss.

When selecting garage doors, consider insulated steel or vinyl. Ensure your doors are equipped with quality weatherstripping to effectively keep out snow, rain, cold, or heat. Keep in mind that more windows mean draftier doors. Another place to conserve energy may be your garage door opener. Look for energy-efficient brands and systems to help keep your electric bill down.



Steel roofing has become a popular choice for modern commercial real estate. It’s one of the most durable roofing materials available and can outlast other types of roofs (like asphalt shingles) by decades.

Since metal is reflective, it can keep a building cooler during warm months to help cut cooling costs. To make your metal roof even more energy efficient (and to help prevent rust), you can add a reflective coating to reflect a higher percentage of the sunlight and heat that hits your building’s roof.



If you’re buying uninsulated siding, wood may be your best bet; it has the highest R-value among popular materials. Consider installing insulated siding, which comes in steel, aluminum, and vinyl and has a much higher R-value than its uninsulated counterparts.

It’s also smart to install house wrap underneath your building’s siding and to ensure your building is adequately insulated. Taking these necessary measures will help keep your building cooler and drier in the summer and warmer in the winter, significantly improving the R-value of your building’s outer walls.



When selecting your heating, air conditioning, and ventilation equipment, make sure to choose a system that’s Energy Star certified. You’ll need to be prepared to change the filters of your HVAC system regularly, and inspect and clean your air ducts as needed. Check the recommendation on your HVAC system to see how often you should change your filter as commercial systems can vary. A fresh filter will not only create a healthier environment but will help your system run more efficiently by getting rid of the built up dust and dirt.

You should carefully consider where you plan on placing vents throughout your space. You want them to be in easy-to-reach locations, but you don’t want them to end up being covered by curtains, machines, furniture, or other items. Programmable thermostats can help you manage the temperature by creating a schedule that aligns with building usage. You can set it to be comfortable during working hours and adjust itself for when employees go home for the night to curb energy waste.


When getting ready to build, look into potential tax deductions that may be available to you for creating an energy efficient building. When the time comes, consider putting in the effort to achieve LEED certification for your new commercial space to increase its value and reduce your overall operating costs.

A project is graded in nine areas to become LEED certified as a green building. Adding a LEED plaque to your building will be a signifier of both high quality and achievement in a resource-efficient, green building.

Check out our blog for more expert advice about the commercial building process!

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Topics: Commercial