Building owners and managers are constantly looking for new ways to cut cooling costs. However, one of the most important yet often overlooked elements for energy-efficient operation of air conditioning systems is the compressor.
The following actions detail how decision makers can cut cooling costs and make the most of air conditioning units just by taking into consideration a few aspects relating to compressors.
Selecting Energy-Efficient Technologies
Over the years, leading compressor manufacturers like Carrier, Carlyle, Copeland, Trane, York, Bitzer, Frascold, Danfoss and Hitachi have developed a variety of technologies that can make a huge difference in the efficiency, sustainability and applicability of air conditioning systems. The top compressor technologies are:
Screw compressors are available in oil-injected and oil-free versions. While oil-injected screw compressors require a smaller initial investment and are easy to install, they’re less energy efficient than oil-free models.
In addition to being more energy efficient, oil-free screw compressors are smaller in size and lightweight, deliver better air quality, and have a longer service life along with a smoother, quieter operation when properly maintained.
Oil-injected and oil-free screw compressors can be equipped with variable speed technology, which ensures superior part-load efficiency and significant energy savings.
Designed with easy application and reliable operation in mind, centrifugal compressors deliver superior efficiency particularly in air conditioning applications that require constant high volumes of conditioned air. Besides outstanding energy efficiency, these compressors have a long life span, facilitate compliance with national energy codes, and can help reduce the carbon footprint. A centrifugal compressor with multiple stages of compression can help generate additional savings, whether it operates at part or full load.
Although a conventional reciprocating compressor isn’t as efficient as other types of compressors, water-cooled models are some of the most energy-efficient products available nowadays. The fact that they can be used in different part- and full-load applications makes them versatile enough for a wide variety of commercial and industrial cooling and refrigeration applications.
Inverter scroll technology
Available with built-in variable speed drives, which provide excellent part-load efficiency, inverter scroll compressors are able to reduce energy consumption and deliver superior efficiency and comfort levels by continuously adjusting their operation according to ambient conditions.
When the outdoor conditions are more favorable, the economizer shuts off the compressor and allows cooler air to enter the system. In addition to increasing the cooling capacity by 20%, thus reducing the need for electrical cooling along with the costs associated, an economizer extends the life of the compressor. The integrated differential enthalpy economizer is more efficient than other types because it communicates directly with the thermostat for real-time adjustments.
Sizing Air Conditioning Units
In both new and existing applications, the best way to size air conditioning units correctly is to consider the type of application, monitor the current load, determine the desired temperature range and opt for the right compressor technology, which can ensure that the system will be able to handle the simultaneous use of different areas.
Replacing Reactive with Proactive Maintenance
Periodic maintenance helps compressors and air conditioning units run smoother and more efficiently. This translates into fewer breakdowns and repairs, less downtime, prolonged life span, reduced stress on start-up, quieter operation, improved heat transfer capability, reduced emissions, better indoor air quality and lower energy bills.
If you’re looking for energy-efficient compressors, Compressors Unlimited isn’t only a leading supplier of spare parts, accessories, and factory-new and remanufactured compressors; we’ve also configured our products and services to offer customers a wide range of solutions complemented with unrivaled expertise, extensive stocks, and rapid delivery.