Energy Efficiency Guide for Colorado Businesses
Recommendations by Sector
HOTELS AND MOTELS
Energy use in hotels and motels is strongly affected by occupancy. Guests affect heating and cooling loads in their rooms, consume hot water, and increase energy use in dining facilities. Hotels and motels tend to have quite high hot water heating loads - about 33% of the total - because of showers, laundries, and food service. HVAC loads constitute another 30%, lighting 20%, and plug loads 17%.
Measures that are frequently found to be cost-effective include the following:
- Inspect for water leaks and repair them. Ignoring such simple maintenance measures is costly since leaks tend to get worse with time and more expensive to fix.
- Install high-quality, low-flow shower heads. Models whose spray patterns may be adjusted by users are best for they communicate to guests that management cares about both comfort and energy and water conservation. Paybacks on the order of weeks are not uncommon.
- Lower hot water system temperature to 120-130 degrees.
- Insulate hot water lines wherever accessible.
- Specify high-efficiency, gas-fired water heating equipment. Small, mid-efficiency, atmospherically-vented water heating systems with energy factors of 0.62 to 0.70 are more cost-effective than standard, less-efficient equipment. Direct vent, sealed-combustion, condensing boilers have even better energy factors - up to 0.86. Commercial boilers that meet ENERGY STAR standards are listed at www.energystar.gov/ia/products/prod_lists/boilers_prod_list.pdf.
- Consider installing multiple boilers. These provide redundancy and can be staged in a way that more efficiently meets loads, compared with a single large machine.
- Use heat recovery from waste water to preheat hot water.
- Install occupancy controls for lighting and HVAC in guest rooms.
- Consider heat-pump water heaters for indoor swimming pools to simultaneously heat water and provide dehumidification.
- Institute demand ventilation controlled by air quality sensors in public spaces from lobbies and dining rooms to parking garages.
- Downsize to a new high-efficiency chiller in conjunction with lighting retrofits.
- Choose high-efficiency packaged A/C units listed by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency in their Tier 2 guidelines (www.cee1.org/com/hecac/ac_tiers/impcttbl.htm).
- Use condensing boilers with large turn-down ratios whose efficiencies improve with turn-down.
- Switch over to direct digital controls.
- Install premium-efficiency motors.
- Verify economizer function and control.
- Consider using cool air from the cooling tower with water-cooled chillers.
- Consider indirect-direct evaporative cooling.
- Upgrade the energy management system; optimize settings to reflect usage, respond to changing weather patterns, and control peak electric loads.
- Install compact fluorescent bulbs in place of incandescents in guest rooms, halls, and elevators.
- Install energy-efficient lighting in all other spaces.
- Install and calibrate automatic lighting controls in conjunction with skylights and clerestories in open areas in order to dim lights in response to daylight.
- Install LED exit signs.
- Upgrade parking lot lighting to save energy and reduce environmental impacts due to light spillage.
- Upgrade garage parking lighting.
- Shade windows and doors from direct sunlight to decrease cooling loads.
- Install high-efficiency glazing carefully chosen for sun exposure and other variables on each facade.
- Install insulation in strategic locations.
- Undertake air sealing, including duct work.
- Install an ENERGY STAR rated cool roof.
- Choose energy-efficient ENERGY STAR appliances throughout the facility. Mini refrigerators placed in guest rooms are notoriously energy wasteful, but ENERGY STAR models are now available.
- Choose energy-efficient office equipment.
- Install Vending Misers on vending machines.
- Install ENERGY STAR commercial refrigerators and water coolers.
Combined Heat and Power (CHP) System
- Install a combined heat and power system to supply electricity, heating needs, and (through an absorption chiller) cooling needs. When properly sized and designed, such a system can save substantial money and avoid the large thermal losses associated with conventional power generation at utility plants.
Funding for this Guide provided by:
Recommendations for this and other sectors are available at www.coloradoefficiencyguide.com/recommendations.