Chill Out, Reducing Your Electric Bill is Easy

Being Canadian there are a few things we know - besides Beer, Hockey and Maple Syrup.  Dealing with our weather variables makes us pretty knowledgeable on heating and cooling.  For example, our location in southern Ontario can experience extreme temperature swings ranging from -40°C in the winter to +40°C in the summer (which is why we can’t live in those comfy igloos year round).

Those exterior winter temperatures sure are nasty – but living through that annually gives us firsthand knowledge on how to make things cold (insert cold beer joke here).  January daily routine - Wake up, make coffee, turn on the Weather Network and see how cold it is.  Seems a little redundant right?  You know it’s cold, just dress warm, suck it up and get on with your day already.

But the reality is that we aren’t necessarily interested in the temperature.  What we as Canadians are after is the “Feels Like” temperature.  Just like an HVAC system, comfort level is the goal of our daily inquiry to the Weather Network. 

The temperature is only a small piece of that puzzle.  Humidity and wind speeds are equally as important.  Both of those variables (along with the temperature) produce the all-important “Feels Like” result. 

With an Air Conditioning system the same principles apply.  The temperature is important – but the reason most systems are installed is for occupant comfort.  That means other factors (air speeds and humidity) can contribute to the effectiveness of the system.  In most cases, these ‘other factors’ are ignored in favour of the temperature. 

Enter the Altra-Air HVLS Fan.  Capable of producing consistent, non-disruptive breeze evenly throughout a large space, while consuming very little energy. 

The principles are simple (and derived from our stereotypical Canadian experience above), increase the air speed (wind) to reduce the “Feels Like” temperature. The example here shows an actual air temperature of 25°C but a “Feels Like” temperature of 19.5°C when considered with air movement from an Altra-Air HVLS Fan. Yes it now feels 5.5°C colder!

"Capable of producing consistent, non-disruptive breeze evenly throughout a large space, while consuming very little energy. "

Now the temperature is too cold for comfort, allowing the operator to increase his temperature set point as much as 5.5°C and decrease his energy consumption.

Envira-North has first-hand experience retrofitting High Volume Low Speed (HVLS) fans into existing Air Conditioned facilities in some of the hottest locations in the world. One of many of our successful applications was installed Dubai in 2012. A 2,500m² air conditioned manufacturing facility installed a single 6.1m diameter Altra-Air HVLS fan to work in concert with their air conditioning system.

We expected that the project would pay for itself in a short period and our knowledge and calculations proved right. The operator increased the temperature set point a mere 2°C. This very minor adjustment resulted in a 34% decrease in electrical consumption for cooling. A tidy $14,708 USD savings was realized over the first 6 months.

ROI you say? Well how does 2.12 MONTHS sound? Most are happy with a 2 YEAR return on investment. On top of that, interviews with the employees revealed that they felt more comfortable even though the air temp was now higher and they felt the air seemed fresher. Comfortable workers are more productive, it’s been proven time and again. Add productivity gains to the ROI and you have even better results. We didn’t bother estimating that on this one though, a 2 month ROI is excellent! Okay now I’m just bragging…

To learn more about using HVLS Fans in conjunction with Air Conditioning or to put your hands on our detailed study of this project, contact me directly via email

Dean Wood - Sales & Marketing Manager, Envira-North Systems Ltd.

Since 2007, Dean has sold, serviced and installed HVLS projects in countless applications on every continent around the world.  His experience and knowledge are key components to the continued success our sales and distribution partners.