How Energy Efficient Is Your Greenhouse?
Utility rates are rising, and bills are getting hotter to handle. Greenhouse operators simply can’t afford to ignore the energy efficiency of their operations. If neglected, profits will simply wilt beneath the weight. The best way to stay on top of the efficiency of your operations is to perform regular energy audits and prompt maintenance on everything from your lighting systems to your standby power generation systems.
Maintaining and Upgrading Your Greenhouse
One of the first and most important steps is to seal any leaks, holes, and openings within your greenhouse. Whether from damage or settling, the drafts these generate will quickly suck out your profits. Sealing leaks in your greenhouse with caulk and spray foam can easily shave 5% to 10% off your utility bills.
You should also take a close look at any exposed metal. The inherent thermal conductivity of metal creates an easy escape route for heat. To reduce heat loss, any exposed metal should be protected by insulation.
Similarly, you need to protect the glass/plastic covering so that you don’t lose heat when the sun goes down for the day. In this regard, the installation of thermal screens is a wise investment that can shave 25% or more from your utility bills.
And, don’t forget to pay close attention to your fans. Greenhouse fans consume significant electricity. This consumption increases if the system is poorly maintained. Staying on top of fan maintenance and repairs will give you solid insurance against breakdowns and inefficient operation.
Upgrade Your Systems
Installing high-efficiency fans, growing lights, and plumbing systems will reduce your energy usage without negatively impacting production capacity. While this can add significantly to your short-term operating costs, these improvements will pay for themselves over the long run and will help shield you against future utility rate increases.
Stay Current on Generator Maintenance
Power generators consume energy while they generate electricity. The more efficient the transaction, the less costly it is to operate your standby generator systems. Staying on top of generator maintenance and conducting proactive repairs will ensure energy-efficient operation. Hiring an EGSA-certified technician to maintain your standby generator will also prolong the serviceable lifespan of your system, and reduce your long-term repair and replacement costs.
Audit Your Power Needs and Consumption
Commercial greenhouses are filled with complex systems that work together to generate a profit. You lose money when these systems stop operating within optimal ranges. Monitoring power consumption will also ensure that your standby generator can reliably supply these systems with power when necessary.
In addition to your fans and lights, closely monitor the power requirements and operation of the following:
- Climate control systems
- Irrigation and hydroponic systems
- HVAC, humidity, and air purification systems
- Fertilization systems
- Pumps and injectors
Is the standby generator in your greenhouse overdue for maintenance or repairs? Contact Gen-Tech Power Generation Specialists at (800) 625-8324 to schedule a service appointment with our EGSA-certified generator technicians.