A continuation from our last blog where we talked about the energy consuming elements and areas of clubhouses.  This article explores the options available for managers of such facilities to find ways to conserve energy and lower the electricity bills of the facility.  A key to successfully enhance energy efficiency in these kinds of facility is operating the energy consuming equipment as per the requirements while integrating them with an automation that allows control and monitoring of this equipment in an energy conserving manner. In this way the requirements are met without any discomfort to the building occupants/club members, while lowering the electricity bills at the same time. The count of the light fixtures and air-conditioning units shows a tremendous energy savings potential which can be achieved by just retrofitting the fluorescent lights and controlling the lighting and air-conditioning units as required.

We examined the potential for 3 types of efficiencies:

  1. Replacing incandescent, CFL, metal halide and sodium vapor lamps with LEDs

Replacing incandescent, CFL for indoor lighting with LED’s and for exterior lighting, replacing sodium vapor and metal halide lamps with LED’s can easily result in reducing lighting power consumption by almost 50%.

  1. Using Sensors to trigger Air Conditioning and Lighting in all feasible areas

Sensors that automatically control lights and air conditioning system is one way of automating the facility to conserve energy. These sensors typically operate using PIR to sense motion in the areas of their range and based on that they can send control signals to other devices that control the lights and the air conditioners. These are appropriate for indoor use and since air conditioning is a large energy consuming asset, such sensors can easily end up reducing between 10-25% of the energy consumption both for lighting and air conditioning by turning them off when no people are present.

  1. Using Centralized Lighting and Air Conditioning control for common areas and utilities as well as some aspects of Guest room

While using timer controlled switches for common area lighting both in interior and exterior was one of the older ways to control consumption, the more recent approach like Building Management systems (BMS) offer another way to further integrate all the energy consuming elements (lights, fans, air conditioners, pumps, motors, etc.) within a building or campus to have a central control of the facility. In the case of BMS systems the energy efficiencies are gained through centralized scheduling of lighting and air conditioning and turning off pumps automatically when water level in tanks reaches optimal levels.

The system can also take command to switch-off the devices in any room in case the space is not occupied. The BMS system allows integration of smart energy meters thereby helping to monitor the energy consumption on a regular basis from the central system. It can warn of problems, by flagging sudden changes in consumption of energy. Often the BMS system can easily improve energy consumption of all electrical assets it controls, by between 15-20%.

Understandably, most of these are old facilities and not easy to rewire, so the latest technologies often use wireless communication and networking to work, easing implementation and deployment. If the buildings are large and wireless range is an issue then a system that is a combination of wired and wireless option can help. This helps in scheduling of all the energy consuming loads as per the requirement.

In case of a high irrigation requirement a well-designed water control system equipped with VFD and timer controls can help in efficient operation. The system when further integrated with moisture sensors helps in optimum use of water and the consumption data can also be recorded into the system with the use of smart water meters. Often this can be integrated with the BMS system mentioned earlier.

Automation is not just for comfort of the building occupants/club member but helps in reducing the utility bills of the facility and making the facility management and operations smoother. BuildTrack is one of the companies provides a wide variety of the solutions described above for all kind of facilities with the objective of quick paybacks (usually 12 months or under) and deployment options that are quick and do not disrupt the aesthetics of the facility.  Read more on energy efficiency solutions here https://www.buildtrack.in/energy-efficiency-solutions

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