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Advice & Voluntary measures

Advice & Voluntary measures

Energy crisis

Various measures proposed by Horesca to reduce energy consumption. Each company will have to decide for itself to what extent it will be able to adapt and integrate certain measures into its operating process, while maintaining a quality service for its customers. In this way, the company will contribute to the European Union's objective of reducing energy consumption by 15%.

Multiple possibilities for short-term action: with low investment

➔ Temperature of the premises

The heating temperature of the rooms (dining room, kitchen, toilets, etc.) can be lowered by one or two degrees without any problems, without any loss of comfort for customers and staff.

In case of investment, it can be advantageous to invest in a central temperature control system, e.g. remote-controllable thermostatic heads of heaters.

Closing the entrance doors

When an establishment is air-conditioned, it is advisable to keep the entrance and service doors closed to avoid over-consumption of energy. The same applies to the summer heating period.

Turn off equipment, appliances and lighting

Kitchen appliances such as coffee machines or plate warmers should only be operated when they are in use. A sticker on the appliance indicating the heating time helps you and your employees to optimise the time of operation.

Similarly, lighting (façade, garden, hallway, etc.) should not be left on longer than necessary.

Closing fridge doors. Covering food when cooking.

Opening refrigerators and freezers wastes energy. Leave these appliances open only as long as necessary.

Lids on pots and pans reduce heat output and can save up to 30% of energy.

Location of equipment

Refrigeration appliances should not be placed next to heat sources. Move appliances to minimise this energy loss.

Optimisation of heating and water temperature

Check, for example, whether the setpoint temperature for hot water can be lowered and whether the heating curve can be adjusted. Even if the heating temperature is lowered by one degree Celsius, this can already save between 5 and 7% of energy.


Replace halogen bulbs with energy-efficient LED bulbs. Replacing energy inefficient bulbs often yields a return on investment within a year.

Mini-bars (Hotels and accommodation establishments)

If possible, the temperature of the mini-bars can be lowered, or the mini-bars can be switched off (when not in use).

Temperatures of rooms and premises (Hotels and accommodation establishments)

The heating temperature of the rooms (bathroom, bedroom, corridor, fitness & wellness, etc.) can be lowered by 1 or even 2 degrees without any problem, without any loss of comfort for the guests and the staff.

The temperature in unoccupied rooms and areas can be lowered to a minimum and raised if necessary.


12 possibilities to save energy: Possible investments

Below is a checklist to help you identify possible starting points for energy efficient investments in your business. These tips are of a general nature and do not constitute an obligation, but will serve as a guide in your economic decisions and to direct possible future investments towards a sustainable economy. In this way you will reduce your energy costs and at the same time meet the legal requirements for sustainability. Tomorrow's customers are increasingly looking for sustainable, environmentally friendly companies.
  • Firstly, saving energy is financially attractive. Many measures can be implemented without high costs. Easy-to-implement solutions can save about 10-15% of consumption. Most of them yield a return after one to three years.
  • Secondly, at the same time, energy savings are helping to defuse the looming gas and electricity shortages and reduce the risk of blackouts.
  • And thirdly, it reduces the risk of being affected by quotas yourself if you are not yet buying on the open market.

A situation of electricity and gas shortages is likely to remain a realistic scenario for several years.

Tips on how to save money

Many energy saving measures can be easily and quickly integrated into daily work. Other measures are of a more sustainable nature and require planning, advice and investment.

1) Involve your staff and communicate with your guests.

Work with your employees on energy saving measures and their implementation. Regular updates on the energy saved can also have a motivating effect. Depending on the size of the business, one or more people should be appointed as energy managers. Finally, your employees will certainly have good ideas for reducing energy consumption in your business.

Inform your guests. Honest and friendly communication is necessary, especially for measures that directly affect guests (e.g. mini-bar and clean linen in hotel rooms). Energy efficiency is not only a sign of economic management, but also of environmentally friendly management.

2) Measure your energy consumption continuously.

Measure the amount of energy you use. Document your electricity meter readings at regular intervals, for example once a week. An electricity meter can also be used to find out which appliances are "energy intensive".

3) Switch off all appliances when not in use.

Kitchen appliances such as coffee makers and food warmers should only be used when they are needed. A sticker indicating the heating time on the appliance will help you and your staff to optimise the time of operation.

  • The cooker should only be lit when pots and pans are placed on it.
  • The heating in unused rooms, such as unoccupied seminar rooms, can either be set to a low level or be switched off completely (frost setting 10 - 14°C).
4. Use energy efficiently in the kitchen.
  • Les couvercles sur les poêles et les casseroles réduisent la chaleur dégagée. Une casserole sans couvercle nécessite presque quatre fois plus d'énergie pour porter de l'eau à ébullition qu'une casserole avec couvercle.
  • Use water that is already hot or boiling from the tap when boiling water. A kettle also requires less energy for small amounts of water.
  • Install flow restrictors on taps - this will waste less (hot) water and therefore less energy. Repair or replace dripping taps and leaky valves as soon as possible.
  • If you do not have an induction cooker: make sure that the size of the frying pans, pots and pans you use are appropriate for the size of the hob.
  • Make sure that the size of the pans, pots and saucepans used is appropriate for the amount of food.
  • Pots and pans with uneven bottoms (e.g. dents) should be repaired or replaced immediately. Pots and pans with rounded bottoms use up to 30% more energy.
  • If the dish allows it: dispense with preheating when baking and use the residual heat of the oven.
  • Massive appliances such as tilting kettles, tilting rotisseries and griddles should only be used very specifically, as they consume a lot of energy. A la carte grills can also be prepared in a grill pan adapted to the size of the product.
  • Compared to cooking, steaming is more energy efficient and requires less water. At the same time, the aroma and appearance are preserved.
  • Only run the dishwasher when it is fully loaded. At night, you benefit from lower electricity rates. In addition, use the eco and economy programmes available on the machine, which save up to 30% of energy.
  • Check whether the dishwasher can be connected to the hot water supply.
5. Save energy in hotel rooms.
  • If your business and the heating system allow it: occupy the rooms by building and floor.
  • In unoccupied areas, the heating can thus be reduced over the entire surface.
  • Consider the use of detection systems: for example, the light turns off automatically when your guests remove their key card and leave the room.
  • Let your guests decide when the towels and sheets should be changed.
  • Install flow restrictors on taps and water-saving shower heads in the shower - this wastes less (hot) water and therefore less energy.
  • Repair or replace dripping taps and leaking valves as soon as possible.
6. Make targeted use of energy in wellness and fitness areas.
  • Check whether the opening hours of the wellness and fitness area correspond to the real needs of your customers and reduce the opening hours if necessary.
  • Install flow restrictors on taps and water-saving shower heads in the shower - this wastes less (hot) water and therefore less energy.
  • Repair or replace dripping taps and leaky valves as soon as possible. Use timers: for showers by the pool, hair dryers and toilet lights.
  • Cover pools at night or when they are not in use for a long period. This reduces the loss of heat and therefore energy.
  • Activation button in the steam room: keep the steam room in operation at 30°C. If someone presses the button, the temperature rises to 45°C. Thanks to an integrated timer, the steam bath returns to 30°C after 15 minutes, for example.
  • In an indoor pool, heating costs are mainly due to the heating of the water and air. Heat recovery dehumidifiers are useful in this case: they use the heat released in the exhaust air, which is in turn re-injected into the room air.
  • A sauna should be closed with a proper sauna door - the tighter the doors are closed, the lower the energy consumption of the heater. In saunas, it is worth installing automated ventilation systems that regulate the supply of fresh air according to the number of people in the room.
7) Use energy for heating in a targeted way.
  • As a general rule, heating one degree less saves between 5 and 7% of energy!
  • In unoccupied guest rooms and empty seminar rooms, the heating can be reduced. Closed curtains also prevent cooling through the windows.
  • In the kitchen, the heating can often be reduced or turned off completely, because cooking produces enough heat.
  • Orient yourself to the following temperature benchmarks:
    • Pool 28°C maximum
    • Dining room 18-20°C
    • Stairwell 12°C
    • Living and recreation rooms 20-21°C
    • Kitchen 18°C
    • Bedroom 18-20°C
    • Bathrooms 22-24°C
    • Cellars and storerooms 6°C
    • Offices 20-22°C

The presence of many people in a room heats it up. At seminars, receptions and other events with many guests, the room temperature can be set a little lower.

Electrically operated outdoor heaters (e.g. mushroom heaters) and fan heaters are very energy-intensive and inefficient. Use these devices only in exceptional cases and in a very targeted manner.

  • Radiators should not be hidden by furniture or curtains. This reduces the heating capacity.
  • If the radiators are placed against an uninsulated outside wall: Slide a sheet of polystyrene or aluminium-covered thermal insulation between the radiator and the outside wall. This will reduce heat loss to the outside.

Thermostatic valves on radiators regulate the flow of heating water according to the room temperature. Thermostatic valves equipped with a sensor detect if a window is open - and then automatically switch off the radiator.

  • Check whether the hot water temperature can be lowered.
  • Timers on the heating system automate a lower temperature at night, for example.
  • For entrances, it is recommended to install an unheated porch so that one door always remains closed. Automatic sliding doors are not recommended from the point of view of energy consumption, swing doors are more advantageous.
8) Use energy for cooling in a targeted way.
  • Refrigeration appliances should not be set too low. Depending on the food and products to be stored, a range of 4 to 7°C for the refrigerator and minus 18°C for the freezer is sufficient.
  • Allow hot food to cool before placing it in the refrigerator or freezing it.
  • Use the fridge efficiently: half-empty or overfilled appliances consume more energy than necessary.
  • Opening refrigerators and freezers results in energy loss. Close these appliances as soon as possible. For refrigerators that have to be opened frequently, consider purchasing an air curtain.
  • If possible, place refrigerators and freezers in an unheated, well-ventilated room. Avoid heat sources such as cookers, heaters or direct sunlight. In addition, the appliances should not be placed entirely against the wall, but at least 5 cm away.
  • Make sure that the ventilation opening (grille) of refrigerators and freezers is not obstructed.

An air conditioner should not cool below 20°C. The difference between the outdoor and indoor temperature should be 6°C maximum.

Ventilate briefly and vigorously instead of leaving the windows open for many hours. Before buying or turning on an air conditioner, check the energy-saving options. Option: blinds in front of the windows.

Modern air conditioners can be controlled by contact switches on windows and doors or by electronic thermostats - if a window or door is opened, the air conditioner switches off automatically.

9. Check the energy used for your lighting.
  • Daylight requires no energy and is free. Check whether you are already making full use of this advantage.
  • In rooms where there are no people at all, motion detectors replace the switch. This is the case, for example, in warehouses and cold storage rooms, but also in toilets or changing rooms.
  • Go for energy-saving bulbs. They are often more expensive to buy, but they require less energy in the long term and therefore amortize quickly.
  • Check whether (decorative) solar-powered lighting is appropriate outside. Switch off illuminated signs and outdoor lighting at night, either manually or by means of timers.
10) Clean and maintain your appliances regularly and carefully.
  • Vacuum cleaners, floor polishers and other cleaning equipment should be cleaned and maintained regularly. This extends their life, increases cleaning efficiency and thus reduces energy consumption.
  • Dirty and dusty lampshades and windows dim the light. In addition, moss and lichen can attach themselves to the luminaires outdoors. So clean them regularly.
  • Heat exchangers at the back of refrigerators should be dusted at least twice a year, as dust has an insulating effect.
  • Weak or broken frame seals in the refrigerator should be replaced. Check and clean them regularly.
  • Frosted refrigerators and freezers work less efficiently. Defrost appliances regularly.
  • Radiators should be cleaned regularly. Dust and dirt reduce the heating power.
  • Air conditioners: Clean filters, condensers and evaporative elements regularly.
  • Replace the ventilation system filters with new (energy-saving) ones every year.
  • For heaters that operate by means of combustion (oil, gas, wood), the boiler must be maintained and cleaned before the start of the heating period. In addition, the boiler should be placed in a room with a sufficient supply of fresh air. Dusty combustion air, on the other hand, causes the boiler to clog up more quickly, resulting in higher consumption.
  • Heating and water pipes in cold and unheated rooms should be well insulated to reduce heat loss.
  • In wellness and fitness areas, clogged pipes, hoses and filters reduce the efficiency of your installations. In addition, the appliances in these areas should be descaled particularly often.
11. Make targeted use of energy for washing.
  • The washing temperature should be set as low as possible. Lightly soiled laundry can often be washed at less than 60°C. (Caution: it is recommended to run wash cycles at high temperatures from time to time to prevent the growth of bacteria)
  • Run washing machines at night benefiting from lower electricity rates.
  • Fill washing machines to capacity. For small quantities of laundry that need to be washed separately in a special programme, it may be worthwhile to buy a smaller machine. The latest machines also use sensors to detect how full the washing machine is and only use as much water and electricity as is needed for the amount of laundry.
  • If the type of laundry allows it, it is recommended to spin it thoroughly. This reduces the residual moisture in the laundry and requires several times less energy than a tumble dryer for the same result.
  • If possible, dry the laundry conventionally on a line.
  • Ironing is particularly efficient with a residual moisture content of about 25% and therefore consumes less energy. For ironing, the residual heat from the iron can also be used.
12. Examine new acquisitions and investments.

An induction cooker heats up quickly and purposefully and is more energy-efficient than gas and electric cooktops.

Hot air and combination ovens can cook, roast, grill, steam and stew at temperatures between 65 and 300°C. The purchase of such an appliance often replaces the use of two or three other large kitchen appliances (frying pan, grill/roasting tray, bain-marie, etc.). For comparison, a combination/hot-air appliance uses about 3.1 kilowatt hours of electricity per day, compared to 13.9 kilowatt hours for a tilting frying pan.

  • When buying new appliances, pay attention to energy efficiency. The acquisition costs may be higher, but in the medium and long term, the lower electricity consumption pays off.
  • Check whether the waste heat from your appliances (washing machine, dishwasher, etc.) can be connected to the heating.

Check the age of your heating pumps and replace older ones. High-efficiency pumps and the new electronically controlled pumps, which adjust their output to requirements, consume considerably less energy.

Consider long-term investments in your building envelope (including windows) and heating. Support programmes will be put in place.

  • Check whether the purchase of a solar installation is cost-effective in your location.
  • Check whether the purchase of a climate-friendly heater is worthwhile.

The energy consultants can advise you and your business in a professional and tailor-made manner.

  • Energy campaign for hotels and restaurants, DEHOGA
  • Gastrosuisse