How Restaurant Operators Can Leverage ENERGY STAR Equipment for Savings: Part I

December 20, 2016

Comparatively speaking, restaurants are energy hogs. They can use anywhere between 5 – 10 times the amount of energy per square foot compared to commercial buildings. In addition to lighting and HVAC, restaurants must power a kitchen full of energy hungry equipment.  From a stove cooking up steaks, to an oven that melts cheese on a pizza, to a dishwasher struggling to operate at full capacity, it’s no wonder restaurants have such high energy demands. So is there anything you can do to minimize your facilities energy usage?

Beyond utilizing smart building software, ENERGY STAR has guidelines and certifications in place for kitchen equipment to reduce energy consumption and cut costs. In our first blog installment on the topic, we’ll provide an in-depth analysis of several pieces of ENERGY STAR approved kitchen equipment varieties that increase profitability through sustainability. 

Refrigerators and Freezers

Whether solid, glass, hybrid, reach-in, roll-in, the combination of options are almost endless when selecting a refrigerator or freezer. However, an ENERGY STAR certified model can save you significantly depending on the type. In terms of electricity, you can save $90 - $430 annually in electricity costs. Over the products lifetime, you can save up to $1,000 for refrigerators and $3,000 for freezers.

Learn Why Your Restaurant Can't Ignore Energy Management. Click Here To Learn More.

Ice Makers

There are two costs inputs for ice makers: electricity and water. In addition, they come in two varieties: batch and continuous. ENERGY STAR certified batch-type are 23% more water efficient versus standard models. In terms of electricity, you can expect to save approximately $125 annually for the batch-type model, and $185 annually for the continuous model. Regardless of the model, the lifetime savings can add up to $1,300 per year.

Steam Cookers

For certain foods, steam cookers produce impeccable quality. The downside, they drain energy. With an ENERGY STAR certified steam cooker, you’ll consume 60% less energy. This equates to $1,200 in annual savings. Due to decreased water and sewage costs, you can save up to $2,300 annually. Over the product lifetime, you can save up to $12,000.


Fryers can serve up some delicious treats at the expense of some heartburn inducing energy costs. Depending on the size, an ENERGY STAR certified fryer can be 30-35% more efficient compared to standard models. Certified fryers will save you between $120 - $520 per year depending on size. Over the lifetime of the product, you can see an average savings of between $1,200 - $5,400.

Whether it’s fast food, casual dining, or a taco stand, restaurants are some of the largest energy consumers in the world. However, with the right ENERGY STAR kitchen equipment you can decrease energy costs and increase profit margins. In our next installment, we’ll take a look at additional equipment. Until then, order up!


Previous Article
How Restaurant Operators Can Leverage ENERGY STAR for Savings: Part II
How Restaurant Operators Can Leverage ENERGY STAR for Savings: Part II

Whether you're serving korean tacos or greasy burgers, energy is one of the most volatile expenses to manag...

Next Article
ENERGY STAR for Restaurants: Increase Margins and Amplify Your Brand
ENERGY STAR for Restaurants: Increase Margins and Amplify Your Brand

Restaurants face a high failure rate due to slim margins, innovative new market entrants and operational ch...