A year ago at this time, Cavendish Plant Manager Marc Colety engaged his staff in an “old-fashioned” energy-saving campaign.
“After years of steadily increasing fuel bills to fire two boilers, winter 2008 marked the point where action had to be taken,” says Colety. “Prices for No. 4 fuel oil had nearly doubled from the previous year, during which the plant consumed 80,000 gallons of fuel to generate steam to heat the factory. At double the price per BTU, something dramatic had to change.”
>Colety investigated alternate heating sources and bolt-on technologies, only to find them too expensive or long-term to help with the 2008 heating season. Instead, he opted for a more time-honored approach.
Mack employees made and installed storm windows using rolls of polyethylene sheet stock and trim lumber; replaced barn door access points with garage doors; recaulked hundreds of window frames; and replaced four windows.
“There were close to 8,000 panes of glass in the various windows, all of which were single pane glass,” he says. “Very few had ‘winter storm’ windows.”
Colety and his team also reduced the operating schedule for the boilers, temporarily moving employees from nights to first shift to minimize steam generation during the night. They also set up strategic heat zones to provide additional heat to cold spots so the boilers did not have to compensate by providing excess heat to the rest of the plant.
“The results were exceptional,” says Colety. By the end of the 2008 heating season, fuel oil consumption was down 51 percent from the previous year and 53 percent from the plant’s five-year average. And to accomplish these savings, we spent just a little over $10,000.”
So while it may be warm and sunny now, think ahead. A few simple steps today could lead to big savings this winter!
Contact: Marc Colety, Cavendish Plant Manager