Boiler upgrade to help efficiency

  • Apr. 5, 2011 2:00 p.m.

The new boiler upgrades scheduled for Smithers Secondary School should go a long way in helping the school district become more energy efficient with an estimated savings of 60 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

Their two current boilers will be removed this summer with three new boilers replacing them. Two of these are condensing boilers, SD54 Supervisor of Operations Ed Hildebrandt said, and the other a typical atmospheric boiler. The two condensing boilers will run at a lower temperature, and if outdoor temperatures drop then the third boiler will kick in.

“That’s where your big savings come from, especially on your shoulder seasons like in fall and spring,” Hildebrandt explains. “We used to just have everything on high fire and always running on full temperature, these will ramp everything down just to meet the now demand.”

The Houston Secondary School boiler that was installed last summer already looks like it will save the school up to 40 per cent savings annually.

“Forty per cent is huge for us, that’s just been a wonderful project,” Hildebrandt said.

The Smithers Secondary School system is expected to generate annual savings of up to 35 per cent. Those savings should be even more in shoulder seasons, almost at 50 per cent, Hildebrandt continued.

The project was funded half by the province of B.C. and half by SD54, with a total cost of around $465,000.

The district chose to contribute a larger portion of their funds to do some additional work while in the boiler room. There were some further upgrades that were necessary, Hildebrandt said, and it’s much cheaper to do these when all the boilers have been taken out and starting fresh.