For every building across the UK, there is an increasing pressure to find ways of minimising their Carbon Footprint – and with good reason. According to the Committee on Climate Change, as of 2012, emissions from buildings accounted for 37% of total UK greenhouse gas emissions. Both in terms of the environmental impact – and of course, the impact on a building’s bottom line – the benefits of seeking energy efficient building technologies are plentiful.
There are many facets of a building that contribute towards achieving noteworthy reductions in energy use. However, one area which is often overlooked is the impact that lifts have on a building’s overall energy performance. Lifts can be a source of unnecessary energy use that escalate operational costs.
But by considering some of the proven energy efficient devices that can easily be installed onto both new lifts and existing lifts, end users can experience energy savings of up to 30% subject to a technical survey. Here is a look at some of the options available:
Lifting Energy Standards: Lift Lighting
It goes without saying that a lift is lit whenever it is in use. But what happens when it is on standby? Do the lights stay on, and if so, how often are they manually switched off? In worst-case scenarios, they can be on 24 hours a day, almost continuously throughout the year. That is a massive energy sap.
By installing a control sensor that automatically dims or switches off a lift car’s internal lights during times of inactivity, power consumption is significantly reduced, energy costs from unnecessary lighting are saved and the life of the lift lamps are extended. Then, once someone calls the lift, the lights will automatically reboot into action.
Lifting Energy Standards: Energy Recovery
Every time a lift is used, it generates huge amounts of power, particularly when travelling with a load in excess of half its maximum capacity. In busy commercial buildings, that can be a cycle repeated throughout any given day. Typically, the energy generated is dissipated through heat – effectively as waste.
There is technology available, however, that can put this energy to good use. A traction lift energy recovery/capacitor storage system can be installed into existing lift drives and recover this energy through resistors which then stores it in the pack for re-use later – thus reducing the demand for mains power when required.
Lifting Energy Standards: Hydraulic Lift Savings
The modernisation of lifts should be seen as a means of dramatically improving long term energy costs that will provide a relatively short ROI. It might be installing an inverter to control upward travel that can reduce energy consumption by up to 30%. If could be replacing an existing valve system for upward travel that can reduce oil temperature by up to 25%. There are any number of ways to reduce energy consumption that building operators might not be aware of, but each will make noticeable contributions towards lowering both operating costs and Carbon Footprint.
For any information on how the above components work, or how they can be installed onto your existing lifts, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Guideline.