Optimizing Energy Efficiency in Colocation Facilities

3 Nov 2023 by Datacenters.com Colocation

In today's digital age, data centers play a vital role in storing and processing vast amounts of information. Colocation facilities have emerged as a popular choice for businesses seeking reliable infrastructure without the burden of building and managing their own data centers. 

Data center colocation refers to the practice of housing servers, networking equipment, and other computing resources in a third-party facility. This enables businesses to leverage shared resources, robust security measures, high-speed connectivity, and expert support services.

What is Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE)? 

Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) is a way to measure how efficient a data center or colocation facility is with energy. It compares the total amount of energy used by the facility and the amount of energy used only for IT equipment.

The lower the PUE value, the more efficient the facility is in utilizing energy for productive purposes. A lower PUE indicates that a smaller portion of the overall energy is being used for non-IT functions such as cooling, lighting, and power distribution. Reducing the amount of energy data centers use for other things can help them save money. This makes it so more energy is used to power and operate their servers, making them run better and cheaper.

This emphasis on energy efficiency is not only environmentally responsible but also financially beneficial for companies running data centers.

Why is PUE Important for Data Center Providers? 

Data centers use a lot of energy. It is very important that we try to be more efficient with energy use and do things that are better for the environment Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) has emerged as a key metric in this pursuit. By aiming for a lower PUE value, data center providers can demonstrate their commitment to energy efficiency and sustainability.  

A lower PUE not only reduces the environmental footprint but also helps optimize operational costs by minimizing energy waste. As a result, data centers are implementing innovative cooling systems, adopting renewable energy sources, and optimizing power distribution to enhance overall efficiency.  

Moving towards sustainable practices helps the environment and also makes data centers more popular in a world that cares about the environment. This makes them more competitive.Here are a few reasons why PUE holds significant importance for colocation providers: 

Cost Savings 

By optimizing energy usage, colocation providers can reduce operational expenses associated with power consumption. Lower PUE values mean less wasted energy, resulting in substantial cost savings over time. 

Environmental Responsibility 

Efficient energy management helps reduce carbon emissions, making data centers more environmentally friendly. With growing concerns about climate change, minimizing the environmental impact has become a critical aspect for organizations. 

Competitive Advantage 

Colocation providers can advertise themselves as being helpful for the environment and saving money. People who care about protecting the environment and spending less money will be interested in these providers.

Tips to Improve PUE for Colocation Providers 

As data center demand continues to rise, optimizing energy efficiency has become a pressing concern for colocation providers. With the exponential growth of data storage and processing needs, data centers are consuming more energy than ever before. In response, colocation providers are actively seeking ways to minimize energy consumption and reduce their environmental impact. 

Here are some tips that data center providers can utilize to improve PUE at their facilities:  

Virtualization and Consolidation 

Implementing virtualization technologies allows colocation providers to consolidate multiple virtual servers onto a single physical server, reducing energy consumption and maximizing resource utilization. 

Efficient Cooling Systems 

Upgrading cooling systems can significantly impact energy usage. Utilizing economizers, efficient HVAC equipment, and employing hot aisle/cold aisle containment strategies can optimize cooling efficiency and reduce power consumption. 

Energy Monitoring and Optimization 

Colocation providers can save energy by using tools to measure how much they are using. They can look at the data in real time and see where they use the most energy. Then, they can come up with strategies to use less energy there. These tools keep track of how much energy is used. This helps to show if the infrastructure, like servers, cooling systems and power distribution units, are working well and efficiently.

Real-time data analysis enables colocation providers to identify energy-intensive operations and potential areas of waste or inefficiency. With this information, providers can use it to find ways to save energy. For example, they can change the temperature settings, make sure the servers are used efficiently, and replace old equipment with newer ones that use less energy.

Renewable Energy Integration 

Exploring the use of renewable energy sources, such as solar or wind power, can have a significant impact on reducing the reliance of colocation facilities on grid electricity and lowering their carbon footprint. By harnessing the power of the sun or wind, these facilities can generate clean and sustainable energy to meet their electricity needs.

Equipment Efficiency 

Regularly upgrading IT equipment with energy-efficient models ensures optimal performance while minimizing power usage. Choosing energy-efficient hardware, such as servers, switches, and storage devices, can significantly contribute to overall PUE improvement. 


By focusing on reducing PUE, data center providers can unlock a host of benefits. First and foremost, it leads to substantial cost savings. With PUE being a measure of energy efficiency, lowering it means reducing the amount of power required to operate the data center. This translates into lower electricity bills and operational expenses, resulting in significant financial savings for the provider. 

In addition to cost savings, improving PUE also demonstrates environmental responsibility. Colocation services are known to consume vast amounts of energy, contributing to carbon emissions and environmental impact. 

Data center providers can help the environment by using cooling systems that use less energy, making sure their servers are used to their full potential, and finding sources of energy that don't pollute the air. This not only aligns with sustainability goals but also enhances their reputation as environmentally conscious organizations. 

Using new technology, being eco-friendly, and saving energy can help colocation facilities have a better future. It will save money and protect the environment.


Datacenters.com Colocation

Datacenters.com provides consulting and engineering support around colocation and has developed a platform for Datacenter Colocation providers to compete for your business. It takes just 2-3 minutes to create and submit a customized colocation RFP that will automatically engage you and your business with the industry leading datacenter providers in the world. 

Datacenters.com provides a platform to view and research all the datacenter locations and compare and analyze the different attributes of each datacenter. Check out our Colocation Marketplace to view pricing from top colocation providers.  


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