As of the latest count (in 2012), there are 5.6 million commercial buildings in the U.S. According to the American Institute of Architects and Rocky Mountain Institute, the majority of these commercial buildings are more than 20 years old — built before energy-efficient, intelligent building technology was developed or even on the drawing board.
What this means is that as a franchise owner or small or medium-sized business (SMB) owner, chances are good that your owner-occupied building was never designed to be energy efficient. That’s the bad news.
The good news is that smaller commercial buildings such as restaurants, car dealerships, grocery stores, office buildings and many others are excellent candidates for retrofitting projects that turn them into intelligent buildings that optimize energy use, comfort and productivity. The even better news is that the average upgrade project takes only 90 days or less from start to finish.
Phase I: Auditing and assessing your current building operations
The process begins with JouleSmart conducting a site survey and a review of the current operating costs for your building(s) including the previous 12 month’s utility bills. Our technicians audit your current systems and equipment and identify key processes and operational areas that are candidates for improvement.
This comprehensive assessment includes, but is not limited to: HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning), lighting, refrigeration, kitchen ventilation equipment, maintenance strategies and even your building’s potential to participate in revenue-producing programs such as Smart Grid.
The results of the audit are used to create a proposal for a customized JouleSmart solution, retrofit project, timeline and projected benefits.
Phase II: Installing the new “brain” for your building(s)
Once you’ve approved the proposal and signed the contract with JouleSmart, we begin building your customized solution. Then we test the solution components before we ship them to your location(s). Our technicians install, test, and commission your new system within your building(s).
Transforming the average commercial building into a certified intelligent facility can include upgrades or repairs to business lighting, ventilation, refrigeration and HVAC systems. We typically install advanced equipment controls and sensors and connect them to each other, the centralized building management system and the cloud. Our Integrated Intelligence Gateway serves as the “brain” for your building(s).
Finally, we show you how to control your building’s systems and see energy usage and savings in real time.
“With a smart phone in the palm of his hand, Bencivengo can now control the temperature in the building and refrigeration/freezer system, control the inside and outside lights and be alerted if a door is left ajar after closing time.”
Phase III: Optimizing energy usage
Once your facility is transformed into an intelligent building, JouleSmart Active Oversight™ begins, optimizing the operation of your building’s systems and providing maintenance for critical building equipment. You have continuous access to our proprietary, cloud-based software to make adjustments to the system and transparently see all the costs and savings.
You pay us the average of the 12 months prior utility bills for the duration of the partnership. We pay the utility provider directly and repay the equipment installed out of the monthly savings. Once the capital equipment has been repaid in full we deliver you and the majority of the savings from reduced energy consumption via check on an annual basis. The result is a building that outperforms its peers, providing you with substantial improvements in operating performance and significant reductions in energy use. JouleSmart clients experience an average savings of 20-50 percent.
For instance, JouleSmart partner Chowder Pot expects to reap post-contract annual savings of more than $15,000 and 15-year cumulative savings of more than $150,000. In addition, JouleSmart negotiated an energy supply agreement for the site that saves the restaurant 15 percent. More than just savings in energy costs, the restaurant is becoming more environmentally friendly, reducing its carbon footprint by the equivalent of more than 3,000 trees and eliminating more than 300,000 miles of vehicle travel annually.
To learn more about the upgrade process, contact us using the form below.