Montrose Port Authority had a problem with their ancient oil boiler heating system which heated the organisation's office block.
Each year, the Scottish port authority spent £41,000 on oil and £51,000 a year on electricity to heat and power the building which is subdivided into offices for local oil industry businesses.
Fortunately, local contractor Specialist Mechanical Services (SMS), run and part-owned by Graeme Fox, had a solution to the high bills and inefficient heating system.
Heat pump cooling
The system is so old that many of the baffles were broken preventing it from being controlled. The company could open the windows to let the heat out, but when ships were unloaded on the quay opposite, it became too noisy in the rooms.
Graeme Fox installed a heat pump comfort cooling system for the offices to give them efficient cooling in the summer and heating in the winter.
A bigger solution
Domestic hot water was supplied from an old calorifier fed from the same oil boilers. It feeds four hot water taps each in six toilet washrooms as well as six small kitchens throughout the building.
The building was about to have a major overhaul office by office and the client wanted all work to be coordinated during the refurbishment works which were scheduled to start in April 2013 with a completion date of January 2014.
SMS opted for Toshiba heat pump air conditioning units throughout the building with a Panasonic heat pump supplying the domestic hot water and some corridor public space heating. Graeme Fox's business wanted extremely reliable equipment which provided high air off temperatures and consistently low power usage. In addition, it was important to provide straightforward, easy to use controls for the client.
Graeme decided against using VRF technology because, it was going to be difficult to install in the required stages without major upheaval and inconvenience to all tenants and the cost would have made the project less viable.
Four Year Pay-Back
Each tenant has an individual distribution board with meter so that accurate billing is possible for energy use. It also encourages responsible energy use for each tenant. The savings (see table below) from the new system are clearly visible.
Since the commissioning the system, there is no oil in use for space heating or hot water. An additional benefit from the heat pump air conditioning is the cooling capability in the summer. Tenants no longer have to open the windows in the hot months to let heat out of their offices.
Further refurbishment plans
The actual annual savings (~£37,000) are nearly double the estimated annual savings projected at £20,000 freeing up considerable cash for other works.
The tenants themselves are delighted as they now have individual control to reflect their own needs rather than the previous situation whereby they had heat emitting from the perimeter radiators panels even if they didn't want it.