Building Operators are Standing by
Like everyone else, energy engineers are under pressure to get work done on time and under budget. But taking an extra 15 minutes to talk through the technical aspects of a project with a customer or vendor can make a huge difference.
Hiding in Plain Sight
Capital improvement projects often include several different energy conservation measures, even if the customer doesn’t realize it. For example, a custom rebate application might describe a straightforward chiller replacement. A few questions may reveal that the project also includes variable speed pumps. A few more questions may reveal that the pumping system is being changed from a primary-secondary configuration to a variable-primary configuration. The customer may still think of this as a chiller replacement, but the pump energy savings may actually outweigh the chiller savings. Finding these savings and including them in a rebate can help tip the scales toward implementation.
Customers tend to focus on the bells and whistles of the new, super-efficient piece of equipment they are installing, but understanding the baseline system can be just as important. That old hydraulic injection molder probably has higher cooling requirements. An experienced engineer will find out and make sure cooling savings are included in the rebate calculation.
Constant Change Orders
After seeing the estimated savings and potential incentives, many customers decide to increase the scope of their project. This could mean increasing the number of light fixtures to be replaced or adding a new measure to capture additional savings. It can be easy to miss these additional savings during verification, especially if they are invoiced separately. A quick phone call is all it takes to make sure nothing is missed.
Open the Black Box
Custom rebate programs are subject to various rules about what types of projects will qualify and how savings are calculated. These rules can be somewhat technical and can produce results that are not always intuitive. A quick conversation with an engineer can help to demystify the rebate calculation, increase trust in the process, and keep customers coming back for future projects.
A little communication goes a long way.