Saving energy means saving money, but does one size fit all when it comes to the actual solutions? It’s undeniable that LED lights are more efficient than fluorescent lights. But in many cases, simply replacing them all isn’t the best answer. The same is true for all energy efficient technologies.
Variables such as energy rates, operational hours and conditions, type of equipment in use, rebates, tax, labor and so on, factor into the savings equation. Without taking these unique aspects into consideration during an energy project the results may be poor financial performance which could result in net losses. For example, if a hospital has $500k to invest in energy efficiencies, but potentially isn’t considering all of the information required to make a sound business decision, they might invest in updated lighting when the real immediate need and better return is in HVAC. This one decision could cause a domino effect: immediate failure of their antiquated HVAC causes patient discomfort, which leads to a potential loss of funding, employee turnover, higher energy costs, the list goes on and on. The bottom line is every situation is different. A cookie cutter approach only guarantees creating an incorrect solution for your business.
Here are just a few of the variables you should consider:
1. What is the actual efficiency of technology being replaced- measured, not calculated?
2. What is the actual efficiency of the product replacing the existing technologies in the application?
3. What is the cost of energy? Is there an impact to the cost for lowering consumption?
4. Is energy pricing trending either direction?
5. What is the usage of the equipment? Operating hours do not equal actual hours.
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