In working to make buildings as energy efficient as possible, Gausman & Moore recognizes the importance of implementing water-saving initiatives. It is crucial that water conservation is an essential part of a facility’s energy management plan. Various plumbing design strategies allow our engineers to create energy efficient plumbing and piping systems to help conserve water. These will greatly reduce the amount of water consumed at any given facility, which will also lower energy bills.
Boilers and Steam Systems
Large heating systems, industrial kitchens, and facilities that require large amounts of steam commonly use boilers and steam generators. Installing the properly sized boiler for your facility can be beneficial because they tend to be costly to run. When we assess the building or facility, we will take the following into consideration:
● A properly sized boiler and/or steam unit is important to ensure the facility is reducing makeup water requirements
● Installing a smaller summer boiler for heating purposes instead of running a full-sized boiler at half capacity; this will lower energy costs
● Utilizing the most lifecycle, cost-effective system for your facility, not just the lowest, first cost option
Water Reuse and Recycling
● Reclaimed or treated water. This non-potable water resource is treated used water, which is then distributed for on-site use. When the water is treated, it must meet wastewater treatment standards, therefore it can be used for landscape irrigation, fountains, toilet flushing, and fire sprinkler systems.
● Gray water. This water is derived from showers, baths, sinks, and laundries, then filtered to remove possible solids. It has the possibility of being reused because it ideally will contain no harmful contaminants. It can be used for landscape irrigation and even toilet flushing.
● On-site water reuse. This type of reuse means recycling water for the same purpose at the same location, and it normally requires minimal treatment or filtration. Examples include laundry water used in multiple cycles and rinse water that is filtered from car washing.
Before helping to decide what type of water recycling options will be best for your facility, we will review all applicable federal, state, and local codes and requirements for treating and utilizing the each of the water sources. In many areas, gray water use may be more heavily regulated due to health concerns.
Leak Detection and Repair
Leaks are not only limited to older buildings, but can also occur following new construction from improper installation of piping. Even small leaks can result in increased water loss over time and increased utility bills. With older facilities, we will perform a distribution system audit to help detect any possible leaks. However, for new facilities, we will help you develop a water-usage budget. Once the building is in use and the estimated water consumption is greater than a certain percentage of the baseline budget, a leak detection study may be warranted. If leaks are not repaired immediately, damage can be done to building structures, and large amounts of water will be wasted.
These water conservation methods are more functional compared to conventional methods and are more productive, without sacrificing comfort, performance, or quality. Reducing potable water requirements through conservation and reuse strategies is a major element of a sustainable design initiative. At Gausman & Moore, we will work to ensure your facility is sustainable and conserves water based on building design, site location, and budget. For more information about our water conservation efforts, contact us at (651) 639-9606.