Lower Production Costs Part 3:
The purchase of a new greenhouse boiler is significant, and most growers research their options carefully before buying. Top considerations are: Cost, operating efficiency, potential energy savings, future maintenance and making sure the boiler type is suited to the growing operation’s heating needs.
That’s where heating experience can help, says Armando Echavarria of Delta T Solutions. In his role of Inside Sales, Echavarria works with all types of growers to help them find the right heating system for their growing operation and budget.
Changing Technology for Heat
“There are a lot of boiler types used in the greenhouse industry, some of which we don’t use at Delta T because they are not the best options for efficiency,” he says. “For instance, traditional steam boilers using low pressure steam are still available but offer low efficiency and are difficult to control.”
Similarly, high mass (high volume of water) boilers such as cast iron sectional, fire tube or water tube styles have relatively low thermal (or running) efficiencies, which costs growers money when the burners have to turn on, Echavarria notes.
“We use the low mass, on-demand units that offer instantaneous water heat when it’s needed. They range in cost and efficiency and we try to match the right type of unit with the grower’s needs,” he adds.
The highest cost doesn’t necessarily mean the best solution for growers, Echavarria stresses. “Sometimes, the highest efficiency unit isn’t the best fit for a customer from an operating standpoint. What counts is how growers need to run the heating system for their operations, as well as their budget and maintenance requirements.”
Cost & Efficiency Rule
Don’t Forget Maintenance!
Echavarria suggests two key steps for maximizing efficiency — making sure the heat exchanger or burners are regularly cleaned, and checking carefully for leaks.
“Learn how to fix any leaks, because they can wreak havoc in a closed-loop hot water system. When new water is introduced to maintain the pressure, the oxygen can dilute the water treatment; cause build-up of scale, organic growth, or rust; and introduce air bubbles that can block heating pipes and tubes. This creates cold spots in your heating, which you don’t want!” he says.
For more information about selecting and maintaining the right boiler for your growing operation, contact Delta T Solutions.
Learn more about hydronic heating at www.deltatsolutions.com. Contact us for a personalized analysis of your heating needs. Call 800-552-5058 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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