We have failing and/or failed equipment in our buildings. We are trying to lower our bills by doing more than just "grabbing the low hanging fruit." Luckily, that may be easier than you think. The easiest equipment fix is to go out and purchase a new motor, boiler or light fixture with an equivalent. That's the easy choice. If we needed it before, we'll need it again, right? Let's answer that by looking at two examples.
1. A new heating unit is more efficient, and therefore you do not need the same capacity. You are essentially paying for the amount of input into the boiler or furnace. Let's take one case where the existing system was 1,500 kBtu per hour at 80% efficient. At 96% efficiency (reasonable if condensing equipment can be used) a similar unit would have an input rating of 1,200 kBtu per hour. This reduction in size is the difference between a $125,000 capital expense and $100,000 capital expense. Buying the new "right sized" boiler or furnace saved 20% of the capital cost at this customer site. Smaller units are less expensive. So, the right sized equipment would be worth a second opinion!
2. New lighting when designed correctly can reduce fixtures with the higher quality of illumination from new LED products. You aren't really paying for fixtures...you are paying for a well lit, comfortable space. A space that enables good vision but without glare and headaches. The way you get the best bang for the buck is to make certain you are not buying more light or more fixtures than you really need. So if you could reduce just 5% of your fixtures in a 30,000 square foot facility this may be real savings. At $1.50 per square foot for new LED lighting, this right sized approach saves you another $2,500 off your LED equipment cost. Add that to more avoided energy savings because you are not paying for light from the additional 5% of unnecessary fixtures and more juice is squeezed from the fruit of your efforts. By purchasing the "right sized" lighting design lowered the capital costs by 5%. The "one-for-one" approach is like sharing your savings with your electrical supplier. But they're not selling you a shared savings plan are they?
New equipment is more efficient, which generates lower costs when correctly applied. Why not squeeze some more juice out of that fruit by "right sizing" the equipment? It sure would be worth a second look.