Latest news from Durable 1: Heat & Glare

Free Energy Audit

25 February 2015

February is a good time to make certain evaluations on saving energy in the coming summer period. It is early enough to make good preventative measures before the sun shines and it’s in time for many organisations to write off some of the costs in the current tax year.

Simple fact: It takes 4 times the energy to cool air than it does to heat it by the same degrees. Yet, many companies that diligently save energy through good insulation and control systems in the winter, disregard the opportunities in the summer. All forms of cooling are hungry users of energy with air-conditioning the worst offender. Organisations need to consider a different approach to cooling based on the following very basic premise: Why let the heat from the sun to enter the building only to have to cool it down? For five decades Durable Limited has been installing window film onto building to reflect the sun’s rays away. This procedure was originally created to cool high rise buildings in so the warmer States of the US, but it has a much broader application these days particularly as five of the warmest summers on record in the UK have happened in the last 11 years.

According to the Building Research Establishment (BRE) solar gains in a glazed building can account for ten times the heat generated by equipment or lighting. In one hour a person gives of about 8W of heat energy per square metre, similar to a computer, whereas a window representing 40% of wall space on a South facing elevation can transmit 63W of heat to a square metre of floor space.

For larger buildings Durable Limited offers a free energy survey that calculates the saving in energy following an application of solar control window film and can also show the payback period. The application is carbon positive and can be a useful addition to any company seeking new ways to reduce their footprint.

That an application of solar control window film contributes to energy efficiency is one thing but the additional benefits are just as important in today’s caring society. The sun’s rays cause peaks and troughs in heat transmission into the working environment resulting in periods when the work environment can become uncomfortably hot with the result that productivity is affected. Glare is another key factor causing issues with monitors, making concentration difficult and having a negative impact on work accuracy.

In March 2013 an article appeared in the ASHRAE Journal written by David Wyon and Pawel Wargochi which summarised many studies over the years on the effects of heat in the workplace (copies available from Durable). In general terms productivity is reduced by 20% when temperatures reach 24⁰C.

There are few energy solutions as simple and immediate, and with so many additional benefits as the application of solar control window film. Contact Durable to see if your building qualifiers for a free energy audit and to discuss what benefits your organisation could derive.

Contact Durable on 0118 989 5200 or visit www.durable.co.uk.

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