DUNEDIN, FLA.—With energy costs jumping as much as 50 percent or higher in some areas of the United States this past year, there is no better time to evaluate the effectiveness of preventive maintenance (PM) efforts. Without proper PM, energy is wasted and profits literally evaporate into thin air. Mintek Mobile Data Solutions, a provider of asset management tools such as WinTrack PM, offers the following 10 tips to reduce the impact of escalating energy costs:
1. Improperly maintained air handlers can waste up to 32 percent of the energy they consume. Check HVAC controls for proper calibration.
Also inspect system insulation for moisture. Replace insulation if necessary.
2. Clean cooling towers regularly and consider using acid treatments in the water to reduce scale deposits. In addition to deposits, towers are subject to clogged nozzles, poor air flow and inferior pump performance.
3. Check all duct work for air leaks and repair where appropriate. Air ducts should be cleaned monthly.
4. Ensure that all doors and windows are closed and sealed appropriately on a scheduled basis. Check for worn and cracked caulking. Replace where needed.
5. Check all electrical systems for loose connections or poor motor conditions. Without proper PM, these systems typically generate a five to 10 percent energy loss.
6. In the kitchen, clean refrigerator condenser coils at least every three months. Also be sure to defrost freezers frequently. Frost build-up reduces efficiency.
7. Also in the kitchen, clean interior oven walls and elements to improve heat transfer, and regularly clean grease and food particles from exhaust hoods.
8. Check pool temperatures regularly to ensure thermostats are working correctly. Also clean filters and strainer baskets.
9. In the laundry room, clean dryer lint screens at least once each day.
10. Dust lamps regularly. Dusty lamp coverings reduce light output and create the need for additional lighting. According to the Washington, D.C.-based National Energy Assistance Directors’ Assn., dust can cut light output by as much as 25 percent.
For more information, contact Mark Sokol, director of product marketing for Mintek, at firstname.lastname@example.org.