Home Depot Stores Get Smart to Save Energy

The Home Depot / 3 min read

The Home Depot’s aim to use resources efficiently is driven by business demands. But we are proud that the effort we put into reducing our consumption of electricity and water is also good for the planet.

Across our U.S. stores, we’ve cut electricity use by 44% since 2010. We far surpassed our goal set a few years ago to reduce store kilowatt-hour electricity use 20% by 2020. In 2020 alone, our U.S. stores reduced electricity use by more than 14% year over year.

This progress emerged from a diligent, business-centered focus to identify unnecessary electricity consumption and curb it. We did that by installing LED lighting, efficiency-driving building automation systems, updated air conditioning and heating systems, and more.

LED Transformation Shrinks Electricity Use

One of the easiest ways to reduce our carbon emissions is to use less energy, and energy-efficient LED lighting has allowed The Home Depot to do just that. By using energy-efficient lighting and installing skylights, we are reducing electricity needs and saving money through fewer maintenance costs.

At the end of 2020, 1,589 of our U.S. stores had been upgraded to overhead LED lighting; LEDs were installed at 427 stores in 2020 alone. Upgraded stores have seen electricity consumption drop by about 30% on average compared to using conventional lighting. Plus, the stores benefit from brighter aisles and better control over their technology-enhanced lights. For example, stores can selectively dim some areas of the store and leave others fully lit after hours when associates are restocking, but customers are not shopping.

LEDs have been a big investment for The Home Depot, adding up to a $178 million total capital expenditure from 2018 to 2020. But they’ve also been a big driver of the remarkable electricity savings we achieved in 2019 and 2020. And the progress continues. We’re on track to install LEDs in all of our U.S. stores by the end of fiscal 2021.

What’s So Great About LEDs?

The benefits are similar in customers’ homes and our stores:

  • Reduced electricity and lighting maintenance costs
  • Lower electricity use that contributes to a smaller carbon footprint
  • Brighter pathways that increase safety and improve aesthetics

Building Automation Optimizes Energy Use

In addition to installing energy-efficient systems, The Home Depot is finding ways to optimize its energy intelligence.  Building automation systems in all U.S. and Canadian stores monitors conditions such as indoor temperature and exterior light levels, reducing electricity consumption and maintenance costs.

  • At 53 U.S. stores, on-site batteries store power during off-peak times for use when demand spikes.
  • Over 900 U.S. stores participate in demand mitigation to optimize electricity costs during peak demand and help local utilities better manage grid capacity.
  • We installed 836 energy-efficient heating, air conditioning and ventilation systems in more than 70 stores in 2020.

Using Less Energy and Cleaner Energy

To learn how we are not only using less, but also sourcing cleaner, renewable energy, click here to read more.