Heritage buildings in Sydney

While heritage buildings can stand the test of time, their energy use often does not. Energy saving projects are undoubtedly great opportunities to not only reduce your energy costs but also to improve the accessibility, comfort and usability of your building to ensure its longevity.

An energy efficiency expert can work with you to identify a range of energy saving projects, while specialist heritage advisors are also on hand to provide advice and assistance in managing heritage requirements. Often these projects will offer quick payback periods. 

Grants for upgrades

From July 2016, owners and managers of heritage-listed buildings can apply for financial assistance for energy efficiency upgrades through the NSW Government’s Heritage Green Energy Grants program. Up to $2 million is available over the next three years for capital works in heritage-listed buildings.

To be eligible, your site must hold an ABN and be listed as a Heritage Item on a council’s Local Environmental Plan (LEP). You can check the NSW heritage database to see if your property is listed. You will also need to have completed one of our training courses to access the grant.

Top energy-saving tips


  • A quick win can be achieved by investing in the latest lighting technology. This can have a short pay back period because of the lower energy consumption and reduced maintenance.
  • Adding sensors and timers will stop you wasting money lighting areas that are not being used.

Replacing high bay or fluorescent lighting with LEDs can achieve energy savings of up to 70 per cent.   

Climate control

Heating, ventilation and air-conditioning are significant energy users for any building. Finding out how to best maintain and optimise your HVAC systems can turn into significant cost savings.  

Hot water

Old hot water systems were built to last but can cost a fortune to run. Energy and cost savings can be achieved by updating or replacing your old system to match the volume and temperature of water your building needs.  


Draughts from windows, doors, chimneys and floorboards could be inflating your climate control bills. Insulation, improved glazing and general draught proofing can be simple actions that make a big impact on energy use.


Submeters are a cost effective way to identify thousands of dollars in energy savings opportunities. They can provide you with sophisticated data about your site’s energy use that a standard utility meter cannot. Submeters can reveal operational inefficiencies such as identifying equipment that is running unnecessarily. This data can help you to compare and benchmark usage across similar facilities and over time.

How much can you save?

Sydney’s Grace Hotel enjoys savings of over $80,000 a year just from upgrading the HVAC system.

Case study - Grace Hotel 

How we can help?

Energy experts

We have a team of professionals dedicated to helping you save energy and cut your power bills.  Understanding your current situation through an energy audit is often the first step.  We can connect you with a local energy efficiency expert who knows your industry, is up-to-date with the latest technologies and can identify your biggest savings.   

Training courses

Our regular training courses can help you make your business more energy efficient and reduce costs.

Online tools and resources

Our range of tools and resources can help you save energy. 

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Page last updated: 12 June 2018