Through an energy audit you will find many opportunities to bring energy efficiency to your organization. But it’s important to recognize that you won’t fully optimize your results unless you also automate and regulate the consumption. Monitoring is the key to maintaining the savings.
An Energy Audit should tell you three things:
- It will tell you about your current energy consumption. The energy audit should give you clear visibility on energy consumption and cost. This means it should provide you with a simple, comprehensive overview of all the types of energy that you are using, and their cost. It should also break out the energy consumption by users so that you know where and when the energy is being used.
- It will tell you about your potential to save energy. It should identify your energy conservation opportunities. It does this by telling you how energy is used and wasted, and describing the energy saving alternatives that could be adopted.
- And it will help you to prioritize your actions. The audit will also provide an energy management plan including recommendations with cost-benefit analysis as well as prioritization of best practices, quick wins and easily implemented solutions.
Throughout your facility there could be many opportunities for energy savings. Typical audits uncover deficiencies in Energy Consuming Systems, such as:
- Compressed Air
- Process Machinery
In many industrial facilities, the largest energy wasters are failed steam traps and compressed air leaks.
In commercial buildings, the Heating, ventilation, and Air-Conditioning (HVAC) systems and lighting can be the largest energy wasters.
Other areas that have an influence on energy use will also be evaluated, including:
- Operations and maintenance as well as
- Employee Awareness
Low consumption devices and efficient installation can lead to energy efficiency gains of 10 to 15% of total consumption. This is what we call passive energy efficiency. Low consumption devices and efficient installation could be things like well insulated buildings, high efficiency motors, and more efficient lamps. Secondly, optimized usage of installation and devices will net a 5 to 15% increase in energy efficiency. For example: up to 40% of the potential savings for a motor system is realized by the drive and automation, and up to 30% of the potential savings in a building lighting system can be realized via the lighting control. Thirdly, a permanent monitoring and maintenance program will garner efficiency of an additional 2 to 8%. This would require you to implement continuous measurement and to react in case of deviations. Automation and permanent monitoring are examples of active energy efficiency.
Energy Audits also tell us that savings can be quickly lost due to various factors. Unplanned, unmanaged shutdowns of equipment and processes can be costly in terms of energy.
Additionally, a lack of automation and regulation of areas such as motors and heating can lose up to 12% per year.
Lastly, without a monitoring and maintenance program to preserve continuity of behaviors, up to 8% per year is lost.
Types of Energy Audits
The first type of audit we will examine is a walk-through. A walk-through is a light audit that consists of a relatively brief inspection of the facility to identify maintenance, operational or deficient equipment issues and to identify areas which need further evaluation. Some quick-wins can be identified and some estimated financial calculations can be done at this step.
Another, more detailed type of audit is the comprehensive audit. This would be a thorough audit, evaluating the energy consuming systems of the building or plant in detail. It may include performing specific monitoring, metering or testing to identify actual energy consumption and losses. It will also include an economic evaluation of the identified opportunities, including cost and benefit.
Comprehensive audits may be enhanced by including more detailed refinements. Examples would include:
- Computer modeling to determine the year round energy consumption and/or savings
- Additional financial analysis to support investment decisions
- This would also include evaluating risks within the economic calculations.
This type of audit may be needed to obtain funding for the projects identified – and is sometimes known as “investment grade audit”.
Our organization has one of the first certified Professional Energy Managers in Nigeria. Our team has conducted various audits in buildings within Nigeria. Contact us via email on email@example.com or on our website www.sisengconsulting.com.ng/contact-us/ and we will get back to you with an audit tailored to your needs and budget.