When is equipment operation energy efficient? – When equipment is properly designed for the job and properly maintained. This is not unlike a human body, which works just fine when it’s used within its abilities and is given necessary nourishment and rest.
What does a rational person do when body shows signs of malfunction, aka disease? – Consults a doctor.
Energy audit is like an annual check up
Energy Audit is an equivalent of a consultation with your physician: doctor analyses your body condition and recommends a therapy, energy audit analyses energy consumption by your plant and recommends an action plan to improve it. It’s up to you to follow doctor’s orders and to implement energy efficiency measures.
Dealing with energy efficiency is harder than with health
When you have a health issue – you feel some sort of pain, when the issue is treated – ‘pain’ is gone. When your company has an energy efficiency issue – nobody feels pain, because consuming energy is normal and the ‘right’ level of consumption is typically unknown. Until and unless excessive cost is identified, it looks like as if company has no ‘energy pain’ at all.
Energy Audit uncovers hidden energy use ‘pain’ by putting a $-sign on energy use, be it water, electricity, or natural gas.
Dealing with energy efficiency is easier than with health
Getting a transplant for your body is a difficult and risky undertaking.
Upgrading or modifying plant machinery based on energy audit is much simpler. And you can add new parts to your plant too.
Who pays for a free energy audit?
Some equipment vendors offer free energy audit. Just how free is it?
Despite whatever claims salesperson from vendors make, they live from commission on equipment sale and therefore their audit can’t possibly not end up with a request for a purchase order. I do not blame them. That’s their business. However, following their advice on equipment procurement is similar to following TV ads for medical drugs: if one sells a hummer – everything looks like a nail.
Efficient equipment does not guarantee efficient operation
Even highly efficient machine becomes inefficient when it’s used in the wrong operational conditions or for the wrong job.
A couple of simple examples: a compressed air system will be inefficient if highly efficient compressor sends air to leaks, to local ‘air conditioning’ or to dust blow-off.
You can’t have energy efficient operation if your machines are inefficient, but having energy efficient machines does not guarantee energy efficient operation.