Energy Efficient Solutions is a full service ESCO located in Stoughton, Wisconsin that has vast experience in the lighting and energy efficient market. We have completed projects in upwards of 50 schools and commercial faculties in excess of 1,000,000 square feet throughout Wisconsin and Illinois. Being a Program Ally for Focus on Energy and Com Ed, we are very knowledgeable on the different areas of savings as well as the rebates and programs for financing them.
During the initial meeting phase, one of our consultants will meet with you to explain a little about what our company does and how we may be able to help your facility become more energy efficient. We will also discuss the possible energy efficient upgrades as well as explaining any utility rebates or financing options that may be available.
While performing the facility audit, one or more of our consultants will walk through your facility and examine the lighting aspects of its energy use. We investigate possible lighting upgrades, daylight utilization, as wells as occupancy sensor feasibility. We collect random light readings to evaluate if adequate light is currently available and for comparisons to proposed photometric layouts. During this stage, we also perform interviews with the people that deal with the maintenance and operation on a daily basis and get feedback on what they see as problem areas. Some of the upgrades that we look for are as follows:
- Replacement of HID Lighting with High Bay Fluorescents – for years people thought that HID Lights (Metal Halide, Mercury Vapor and High Pressure Sodium) were the only way to properly light applications with higher ceilings such as warehouses and gymnasiums. However, recent innovations in fluorescent technology with T8 and T5 lamps have created another very attractive alternative. This alternative pairs several T8 or T5 lamps together with highly efficient reflectors and ballasts to produce a superior way to light these high bay areas. This Fluorescent High Bay lighting is superior in several ways. The first of which is it produces similar or more light at about half the energy consumed. Besides being more efficient, fluorescent lighting is instant on so they can be paired with occupancy sensors to further maximize energy savings. They also have slower lamp degradation than HID lighting in that they maintain their initial foot candles 5 times longer than metal halides or mercury vapors. The light produced is also a higher quality light having superior Color Rendering Index (the higher the CRI, the closer to natural sunlight) which allows the human eye to better perceive the true spectrum of color and further creates a brighter environment.
- Upgrade outdated fluorescent technology - T12 fluorescent lighting was the best lighting available about 10 years ago. However, technology has advanced a great deal since then and T8 lighting has far surpassed T12 technology as being more efficient and producing more light. With that being said, there are a number of retrofit options to update outdated technology with the most modern available. These retrofits usually halve the number of lamps in a fixture while producing more light that is more efficient and a better quality. The new electronic ballasts also last longer and don’t have that bad “flicker” effect that the old magnetic ballasts were sometimes prone to.
- Replace Incandescent with Compact Fluorescents – This is probably the simplest of all the upgrades, but we still find several areas that can benefit from this simple replacement. Compact Fluorescents have been designed to output the same amount of light as incandescent at around 25% of the energy. This is achieved because incandescent lights only use around 12% of the energy they consume to create light the rest is used to create the by product of heat. Therefore a 60-watt incandescent can be replaced with a 13-watt compact fluorescent. The only drawbacks to performing this upgrade is that a compact fluorescent takes about a minute to fully illuminate and they initially cost a bit more that incandescent. However, if you perform the energy calculation along with looking at the lamp life (lasting 10 times longer than an incandescent), it is easy to see why this is such a wise option. Compact Fluorescents are now available in several sizes and wattages sure to cater to any need your facility may have.
- LED Lights - LED (Light Emitting Diode) technology has improved drastically in the last few years. LED retrofits are now available for a number of options such as exterior wall packs, canopy lights and parking lot lights. These upgrades often times drop energy by as much as 80%. You will see tremendous maintenance savings as well, because they are rated for 70,000 hours when compared to other lighting with a rating of less than 20,000 hours.
- Sensors and Controls – The main type of sensor used today are occupancy based sensors. This type of sensor turns the lights on when someone is present and off when the room is vacant. There are three main type of occupancy sensors: ultrasonic, passive infrared and dual which is a combination of both technologies. Ultrasonic occupancy sensors detect movement in the room by emitting a high frequency sound (above human and animal audible levels) and listens for changes in the frequency of the sound as it reflects off objects in the room. If the frequency changes that means something in the room is moving. Passive infrared sensors are the most commonly used type. These sensors detect heat as an occupant moves into the range of the sensor. The third and final type of occupancy sensor is the dual technology sensor. These sensors use both types of technology for detection. These sensors are usually more accurate at not creating false positives. A false positive is the sensor detecting movement when no one is present thus turning the lights on. It is estimated that occupancy sensors can save between 13% and 80% of the energy depending on the area they are used. A room like a gymnasium that typically has the lights on for the whole day can see significant savings with the utilization of sensors. This is an area that previously was overlooked because they usually had HID lighting that takes a long time to restart. However, with the emergence of fluorescent high bays, occupancy sensors are now a viable option. The actual savings from sensors is somewhat difficult to accurately estimate because some people are much better at consistently turning the lights off when they leave a room. The only way to accurately measure the savings would be to use some kind of light logger that measures the time that the room is occupied/vacant and the lights are on or off. We install light loggers from time to time to get an accurate sample to accurately estimate hours of savings and loss. Another type of sensor is to use photosensors. Photosensors are small usually round units that may be installed on a ceiling and then hooked to lights. The photo sensors send messages to the lights when to dim or completely shut down based on the natural sunlight available. This takes me to the next subject, which is daylighting.
- Daylight Harvesting – this is the method explained briefly above that couples photosensors with fluorescent luminaries to reduce power when natural light is available. Various dimming and controllable ballasts are now available to customize the work environment to whatever their needs sunlight levels may be.
After the information that was collected during the facility audit is entered into our system, we perform an extensive project analysis. This analysis includes calculating current energy use, projected energy use, maintenance savings, estimated payback period, as well as photometric layouts for projected light levels. Along with this analysis, we also have calculations on how this upgrade will positively effect the environment by reducing emissions and pollution.
Report Presentation and Recommendations
When we present our findings to you we make sure to explain the results as well as how we arrived at the calculations so you understand how these upgrades, when implemented, will make your facility more efficient. At this time, we will also give recommendations of products and vendors to use for superior savings. The data will be presented in a comprehensive report that will make it easy for you to prioritize the projects to implement to maximize savings and benefits.
Our installation staff has now grown to over 15 crew members. Our crew will work around any schedule to make certain not to interrupt your facilities’ day to day operations and make a smooth transition to your upgraded facility.
Follow Up and Utility Rebate Processing
Several utilities and organizations such as Focus on Energy and Com ED will have rebate and incentive money to help you pay for some of the project. Being a Program Ally, we are very familiar with their program as well as other programs and will help you obtain any money currently available. We will also follow-up to ensure your satisfaction with the entire project.
If you are interested in these services and would like to meet with one of our professionals you can reach us as (608) 205-9011.