Maximizing Data Center Efficiency with Energy Audits

by | Oct 19, 2020 | Energy & Sustainability

The need to reduce energy costs and understand your data center’s efficiency is a crucial business practice for successful budgeting; knowing how to reduce the energy costs to build that efficiency is vital.  You probably understand how much power your data center uses, and know that is not an indicator of efficiency. Facilities that provide high capacity and performance tend to consume more energy than standard facilities; however, this is not always an indication of inefficiency. To determine your facility’s efficiency, you must know where the power is being utilized or lost and how it compares to other facilities of similar size and performance levels.

Energy Auditing Services can:

1. Provide a detailed view of how a facility distributes energy

2. Transform audit results into valuable action plans

3. Continually analyze methods to ensure their success

Understanding How a Facility Uses Power Across Systems

While many people tend to think of data centers or critical power systems as a unified working system, they’re made up of multiple, distinct interconnected systems, including IT, HVAC, critical, and building electrical systems. Some of these systems use more power than others to function; an efficient energy auditing plan must go below the surface and observe each of these individual systems at a granular level. Armed with this information, you can better understand where the inefficiencies are located within your infrastructure and address them.                                         

Turning Results into Action Plans

While energy auditing is the first step toward establishing a more efficient infrastructure, it certainly shouldn’t be your last. The purpose of auditing is to give you a benchmark. While many data center administrators get preoccupied with energy efficiency ratings like PUE and DCiE, such ratings only exist to help you gauge the efficiency of your infrastructure so that you can convert that knowledge into more favorable results. That is why you should never stop energy auditing. You need to understand what your energy audit results mean so that you can get actionable insights to drive down power costs within your infrastructure.

Ongoing Support to Assess Efficiency Measures

It is essential for data center and critical power administrators to understand that increasing energy efficiency should be an iterative process. Your first energy audit should help you identify the “low-hanging fruit” or things you can do to improve energy efficiency results immediately. Over time, as you conduct further energy audits, you will be doing so both to find new opportunities to become more energy-efficient and to verify that the changes you’ve made in the past have had the positive effect you were looking for. An ongoing program of energy audits is the best way to ensure real and long-lasting results. Conducting energy audits at regular intervals over time will give you a better look at how your efficiency measures are paying off.

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