Elco ECM Motors Deliver Efficiency to Hotel Barcelona

Excluding labor, energy is typically the highest cost that hoteliers face, with the air-flow system constituting approximately half of the total energy consumed. However, European studies have estimated savings of up to 20 percent for heating and 30 percent for cooling by implementing energy-efficient HVAC upgrades; particularly because a building’s energy consumption is greatly influenced by indoor temperature levels.

Hotel Barcelona Princess
Barcelona, Spain

Hotel Barcelona Princess has centrally regulated air conditioning and heating for optimal guests’ comfort. This high-quality HVAC system is subject to strict and careful maintenance; however, even after 10 years of regular service and upkeep the fan coils began to make noise and vibrate, indicative of the need for replacement. Typical with the passage of time, FanDeck™ units or ventilators in fan coil equipment usually require replacement, either due to motor failure or to defects in the runners.

Josep Haro, Hotel Barcelona Princess technical manager, is constantly on the lookout for ways to improve energy efficiency in the facility. When the hotel’s traditional capacitor motors started showing signs of wear, Elco with the help of partner company FanDeck Systems, S.L., submitted a proposal to conduct a pilot test in two identical hotel rooms. In one room, the same motor and capacitor technology was installed with the goal of maintaining the aerodynamic performance while reducing consumption and noise levels of the original components through the use of updated equipment.

In a second room, Elco installed a high efficiency ventilation unit equipped with its ECM electronic motor and proportional thermostat. Fans with electronically commutated motors reduce direct consumption by more than 70 percent compared to capacitor motors, and noise levels through the use of thermostatic speed variators, which adjust the fan speed as the room temperature approaches the set point.

These rooms have been monitored since August 2012 and will continue until December 2013 at which time the energy savings results will be reviewed. However, based on the current positive outcomes, the hotel anticipates installing made-to-measure, fully-balanced Elco ECM motors and electronic thermostats in all 364 guest rooms and reaping dramatic energy savings while reducing energy consumption. Due to the high ongoing occupancy rate at the hotel, the full installation will take approximately one year to complete.

Located along the Mediterranean Sea, Hotel Barcelona Princess is a four-star, 26-story property, and is one of the city’s most iconic buildings.