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Conservation Tips

Campus quick tips to save energy and water


  • Replace desk/lamp light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL). CFL bulbs use 75% less energy, and last 10 times longer.
  • In areas that have more than adequate lighting (i.e. corridors or near windows), turn off every other light and/or remove unnecessary bulbs.
  • Use task lighting to reduce overhead lighting.
  • Turn off lights when leaving the room.


  • Turn facets off completely.
  • Place the faucet lever in the cold position when using small amounts of water. Placing the lever in the hot position uses energy to heat the water even when it never reaches the faucet.
  • Report leaking faucets, running toilets and outdoor landscape irrigation missing the plants.
  • Turn off the water while brushing your teeth or soaping up your hands or face for washing.  You’ll use ½ gallon instead of 10 gallons! 
  • Take shorter showers!
  • Use professional car washes – save water, protect water quality and clean your car.
  • Run full loads in dishwashers and washing machines. 
  • Save water, save energy – learn about the water energy connection (Watts in the Water?)  
  • Take advantage of the water refill stations across campus – ARC, Clare Small, Eckley, Engineering, ENVD, Macky, MCDB, Muenzinger, Stadium Pipefitters Shop and Theatre and Dance – stay hydrated, and avoid wasting water and plastic bottles. 
  • Learn more about water conservation by visiting these websites:

Denver Water ( Website)

City of Boulder (Website)

Boulder County (Website)

Windows and Doors

  • Keep shades and curtains open or closed to either allow sunlight to heat during winter or to prevent heating during summer.
  • Turning down thermostat rather than opening windows if space gets too hot.
  • Inspect around frames of exterior windows and exterior doors to see if light is visible from outside. Report to Conservation Hotline 303-735-6202.
  • Also report any missing or damaged weather stripping.

Building Schedules and Comfort Standards

  • Provide us with the normal hours of operation for your building so that we may correspond HVAC operational hours to your building schedule to take advantage of after hours and night setbacks.
  • Heating Season: The goal is to maintain 67-69 degrees F in campus buildings during the winter season from October through April.
  • Cooling Season: The goal is to maintain 75-77 degrees F in campus buildings during the summer season from May through September.
  • View our Comfort Standard page for more information on building temperature standards throughout campus.


  • Screen savers DO NOT save energy but giving your computer a nap does. Put your computer into ''sleep mode'' (blank screen) by enabling power saving features. Your monitor and hard drive will go into a low power mode when not actively in use. For help with enabling power features: call ITS at 735-HELP
    For instruction on how to enable PC power management/monitor sleep mode: configuring monitors
  • Turn OFF your monitor when going to lunch or a meeting.
  • Set the brightness of your screen down. Click here to see how.
  • Set your screen to automatically turn off after 5 or 10 minutes of inactivity.
  • Turn off your computer during the evening and on weekends.
  • Use the ''print preview'' option to find errors before printing.
  • For more information see the Greening of Campus IT presentation.

Faxes, Photocopies and Printers

  • Print only when necessary!
  • Print double-sided.
  • Enable power-saving features on all equipment.
  • Re-use one-sided office paper.
  • Use a fax ''post-it'' instead of a cover sheet.
  • Check with the PSC to see if your copying machine contract is due for renewal with a multi-function device.
  • Summer Printing Initiative (sustainable printing handout)
  • Summer Printing Project (presentation to the OIT Summer Community Event)

Vending Machines

  • Use programmable vending machines that power down when the building is closed. Check out Green Vending Machines.
    • To program your building's vending machines for power management, please contact us with your building schedule, and use "Vending Machine Programming" as the subject of your e-mail.

Holiday Building Setback

  • During holidays and break periods on campus, buildings temperatures are adjusted to a set back schedule. If you anticipate a special event during the holiday schedule, please call the FM service center (x2-5522) in advance to resume normal schedule during holidays.
    • Setback Temperatures
      • Winter Setback- 60°F
      • Summer Setback- 80°F

Other Good Habits

  • The campus now uses 30% recycled office paper. Try a case of 50% or 100% recycled paper next time you order paper.
  • Recycle everything.
  • Use power strips to turn off all of your equipment at your desk, instead of having to turn them all on and off individually.
  • Buy office equipment with the ''Energy Star'' label. Energy Star products meet or exceed the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) energy efficiency criteria and represent a better value.