Industrial Cooling Tips: Cut Your Energy Costs

For successful manufacturing operations, cooling is essential. However, cooling can consume a lot of energy. Fuel prices are going up and to this end, it pays to have energy efficient industrial chillers or to choose other efficient cooling systems for your business.

Individual Heat Loads Cooling

A few years ago, it used to be common to have one cooler being used to cool more than one load. This is still applicable in plastic processing industries where one cooler cools the mould and the hydraulic oil. This system used to consume lots of energy. A cooler could be at least 200 percent bigger than needed in capacity when used for mould cooling. In this case, the full capacity of the cooler is used to reduce the full flow of water to about 10 degrees for the mould and the rest used to cool the hydraulic oil when 30 degrees Celsius water would do perfectly.

Instead of the above setup, you can have a small air cooled chiller installed outside for mould cooling and a different small dry air cooler installed for hydraulic oil cooling. You can alternatively install a small water cooled cool box indoors for moulds cooling and a dry air cooler outside for hydraulic oil and chillers condenser.

Do not Oversize your Coolers

There is a tendency to buy industrial chillers that can manage peak cooling loads during the hottest days of the year. However, most of the time these conditions do not coincide. Though you may not find the exact match when buying a cooler, it is advisable that you do not buy a large cooler whose full capacity will never be required. Most processors take caution by buying a cooler that is one unit size high than they need. This results to a cooler that is over-capacity for its duty. It is energy saving to run a correctly sized chiller at full load than to run an oversized one part load.

Location

For coolers that rely on air, it is important that they are located in a shady place, away from direct sunlight, outdoors. This impacts the use of energy, running, capital and the functionality of the cooler. You should size for the max ambient temperature expected in your area; for instance 35 degree Celsius in Central London.

Maintain the Cooling System

It is important that you keep the cooling system clean and free of debris. Dirty fins hinder the flow of air thus increasing the condensing temperature. This in turn ups the cost of running the system and lowers efficiency. In case glycol is used in the chilled water system, rigorous maintenance is required to keep it from freezing. It should be noted that when the concentration of glycol is too much, cooler performance and effectiveness are adversely affected. This is especially important when designing the right chilled water temperature.

To maintain the maximum efficiency of your industrial chillers and save energy, ensure that you have the whole cooling system audited by a REFCOM accredited service company. This should be every 6 months or even a shorter period. You can use a free cooling system where possible to increase energy efficiency in your manufacturing firm.