Top Energy Focus Tips to Immediately Improve Your Energy Bottom Line
- “Off” is free; do you continuously evaluate which building HVAC systems and lighting can be shut down during off-peak hours or when not in use?
- Have your building control system (BCS) generate an override point list so you can quickly review all the equipment and see which automatic controls in your building have been “overridden” or taken control of manually.
- Have your BCS generate a failed point list so you can review equipment or points that have failed or are no longer functional.
- Calibrate the air handler cold deck controllers and sensors (pneumatic and electronic).
- Develop an internal guideline or policy about staff overriding or changing BCS set points or equipment statuses; change passwords and enforce your policy.
- Ensure that every air handler and variable air volume (VAV) box has an on/off schedule (i.e., holidays, Sundays, nights, after 6 p.m.).
- Implement cold deck reset to vary the discharge air temperature of the air handler to correspond to outside air temperature conditions.
- Equip VAV boxes with software logic and dead bands in their BCS control loop to ensure that the primary air flow is always reduced to its minimum before any reheat valve or heating contactor is activated.
- Have the minimum primary air flow of most hospital VAV boxes automatically reduced to either four or six room air changes before the reheat valve or heating contactor is activated. Set up common area or office environment hospital VAV boxes such that the primary air flow reduces to two air changes before the reheat valve or heating contactor is activated.
- Implement chilled water reset to vary the chilled water supply temperature between 42 to 45 degrees to correspond to outside air temperature conditions.
- Implement heating water reset to vary the heating water supply temperature between 85 to 140 degrees to correspond to outside air temperature conditions.
- Implement condenser water reset to vary the condenser water supply temperature between 60 to 85 degrees to correspond to outside air temperature conditions and the operating parameters of your chiller.
- Implement air handler static pressure reset to vary the air handler supply fan speed and static pressure to correspond to the primary air damper position of the typical VAV box associated to the air handler. The goal is to minimize the air handler flow (and static pressure) to reduce horsepower by keeping VAV box primary air dampers between 80 to 90 percent open at all times.
- Use the BCS software to lock down zone thermostats and sensors in a typical clinical or common area space to 72 degrees with a local control of plus/minus 2 degrees (70 to 74 degrees F total range).
- Set condensing boilers to be fuel efficient by ensuring they operate at a return water temperature of less than 120 degrees F and fully condense (sweat) and give up the latent heat to the water instead of the exhaust stack.
- Do not keep a lag boiler ”warm”; start and stop it as required.
- Equip operating rooms and cath labs with controls and hardware to automatically slow down the air handler (or reduce constant air volume (CAV) box flow) after normal procedure hours. Do not change the temperatures; simply reduce the air flow to the room while still maintaining the code-mandated positive pressure relationship to the surrounding corridors.
- Balance operating room total air changes per hour (ACH) to achieve between 20 to 25 ACH (code minimum is 20 ACH).
- Vary both chilled water and heating water pumping differential pressure at the farthest point in your facility (DP) to match the season (i.e., single digit DP for the heating water pumps in summer, higher DP in winter; the inverse logic is true for the chilled water pumping system).
- Equip lighting systems in lobbies, skywalks, back-of-house locations, rest rooms, lounges, and other common areas with high-quality motion sensors and ambient lighting sensors that automatically dim or shut off the lights based on daylight and traffic conditions.
- Steam traps leak; check and repair or replace monthly.
Pick any ten of the above items and immediately see a 10 to 20 percent reduction in energy consumption!
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