Heating within Industrial and Commercial premises can account for up to 60% of operating costs, but how can this be reduced?
Do you require a new Industrial Heating System, or could it just be your systems controls?
Without realising it, you could be wasting a significant amount of energy by not utilising your heating controls to operate at maximum efficiency.
Is it just as simple as lowering the temperature of your system?
Although it is true that reducing your temperature set points by just 1°C can reduce your energy bills by up to 8% per year, but is this enough?
Heater Controls within an Industrial Environment, operate using the same principles, but there are many differences in the way the systems are used. For example, there is a minimum temperature that is required to be maintained within Industrial and Commercial Premises. Industrial facilities may require various temperatures within the same building depending on the work that is being carried out. If the work is of heavy duty, then a comfortable working temperature should be between 11-14°C. If the work is of a light to moderate nature, then your temperature should be 16-19°C and should the work be sedentary then the temperature should be between 19-23°C.
Sometimes you may be a range of activities taking place, so the temperatures may have to vary throughout your building.
An excellent way to ensure this is by utilising zoning. Zoning allows you to control the temperature of every zone within your building precisely. It would be poor energy management to heat any unoccupied space. Zoning allows you to switch off the heaters in any unused space. You also wouldn’t heat a room where you have sedentary workers at the same temperature used in an area occupied by heavy workers.
Zoning would be an ideal solution for buildings that have different occupancy patterns, different temperature requirements or have various floors, where the floors above are poorly insulated.
When zoning your HVAC system, you should do so in conjunction with an Energy Saving Controller.
Think of it like this; you wouldn’t want all of the lights in your premises controlled by one light switch. This would mean a significant amount of energy wastage, as you may be lighting empty rooms.
That’s why for each zone that would require different temperatures you would install its own energy efficient time and temperature controller. One of the key functions is that your controller is secure with coded entry, ensuring that unauthorised personnel cannot alter the settings.
The Controller is then linked to a Building Management System, which is a computer-based control system that is a central nerve station that controls the building’s internal environment. Typically they can control everything from the lighting to the CCTV security systems and even to the fire alarm systems. These systems can also be used to control your HVAC equipment.
One of the main advantages of utilising a building management system is that it assists with the optimising of your energy management strategies and minimising operational costs.
How do the BMS and controller work together?
You access your BMS and input all of the relevant times, and temperatures required for each zone, for example in the sedentary work area you need the temperature to be 21°C at 8 am when your workers arrive and to shut down at 5 pm when your employees leave. Although because of the materials on site, you need the building to maintain a temperature overnight and over the weekends of 10°C. You would set times and temperatures for those days and times, and the BMS will tell the Energy Efficient Controller to fire up the heater. For the room to reach the desired temperature at the time you want, this temperature would then be maintained throughout the day by either switching the heaters off should the temperature exceed the temperature you require or fire up should the temperature drop. After 5 pm the controller would turn off the heaters until the temperature necessary for the evening and weekends has reached the temperature required.
You can set each zone to different temperatures and also set different times, meaning that you are not using energy when it’s not needed.