Efficient use of boilers could save £400million

UK organisations could save over £400m a year by taking simple, low-cost actions to improve the efficiency of their hot water boilers, according to new guidance published today by the Carbon Trust.

New analysis by the Carbon Trust reveals that heating and hot water accounts for over one third of UK organisations' energy consumption and up to 60% of the carbon emissions from some UK industrial processes, such as food production and laundering, where demand for steam or hot water is high. However, it's possible to cut heating costs by up to 30% by implementing some simple boiler-related energy saving measures.

The guidance outlines how organisations can make immediate energy savings of 10% through better maintenance and low cost improvements, such as installing insulation and retrofitting controls.

Heating water uses a huge amount of energy so if you want to cut your bill and boost your bottom line, checking your boiler is not a bad place to start. UK organisations could be saving over £400m a year by following simple, low-cost measures.

- Richard Rugg, Director, Carbon Trust Programmes

The new Steam and high temperature hot water boilers and Low temperature hot water boilers guides are part of the Carbon Trust's Expert in Energy series. The Carbon Trust is also running a free webinar on how to significantly reduce running costs and improve the efficiency of your hot water boilers at 12pm, 7 March 2012.

A Scottish knitwear manufacturer reaped dividends when it replaced its existing oil-fired boiler with two smaller gas-fired boilers equipped with digital combustion controls. The more streamlined boiler process and correct sizing led to a saving of 35,000 litres of fuel oil and £13,200 per year.

All modern boilers are capable of achieving an efficiency of at least 80% by taking simple actions to impact their performance.

Top Tips from the guides:

Carry out boiler maintenance - Over time mechanical components can become worn which can affect combustion efficiency. Therefore burners and their controls need to be checked at regular intervals and adjusted as necessary.

Minimize heat losses - Keep boiler insulation in good condition. All pipework, valves, flanges and fittings in the boilerhouse should be adequately insulated and valve mats/covers should be replaced after maintenance work.

Implement effective water treatment - The presence of impurities and contaminants in water make treatment and conditioning regimes essential to provide water of a suitable quality for the effective operation of steam boiler plant and systems.

Produce a maintenance manual - Detail records of work done, the person responsible, and when they were completed. The formalisation of maintenance in this manner should help ensure that tasks are carried out at the correct frequency and will highlight ongoing problems.

Consult your boiler manufacturer - Find out what the recommended TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) level is and compare this with your current operating regime.

Consider boiler replacement - In the longer term, if a boiler is more than 15 years old, or if it is showing signs of inefficient operation, it may need replacing. Capacity/size requirements, boiler compatibility and financial and environmental impact must all be considered in the process.

Notes to editors:

For more information and to speak to a Carbon Trust spokesperson, please contact the Carbon Trust press office:

Tel no: 0207 544 3100
Email: press@carbontrust.com

About the Carbon Trust

The Carbon Trust is a not-for-profit company with the mission to accelerate the move to a low carbon economy, providing specialist support to business and the public sector to help cut carbon emissions, save energy and commercialise low carbon technologies. By stimulating low carbon action we contribute to key UK goals of lower carbon emissions, the development of low carbon businesses, increased energy security and associated jobs.

We help to cut carbon emissions now by

  • Providing specialist advice and finance to help organisations cut carbon
  • Setting standards for carbon reduction

We reduce potential future carbon emissions by

  • Opening markets for low carbon technologies
  • Leading industry collaborations to commercialise technologies
  • Investing in early stage low carbon companies