R-22 Phase out January 1st, 2010

January 1st is just around the corner. Now is the time to start preparing for the R-22 refrigeration phase out. Starting in 2010, manufacturers can only produce R-22 refrigerant to service existing equipment. All newly manufactured units will use an alternate refrigerant.

Important Things to know about the R-22 Phase Out

The phase out of the ubiquitous R22 refrigerant gas changes many things for the consumer. If you need to know more about the phase-out, you should read the following pointers.

1) In the United States, there are regulatory bodies like the EPA that have laid down strict guidelines with regards to the regulation and maintenance of refrigerant leaks. The Montreal protocol and the Kyoto protocols have been initiated on an international level to regulate similar parameters. These protocols are being put into place to regulate the repair of refrigerant leaks and the disposal of older machines that use such refrigerants.

U.S. Department of Energy to Strengthen Efficiency Standards

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced three new steps to strengthen its ability to enforce energy efficiency standards. DOE has formed a new enforcement team within the Office of the General Counsel; established a program to randomly review manufacturers’ compliance with DOE certification requirements; and is publishing guidance that provides further details about DOE’s energy efficiency enforcement regulations.

In its new guidance, DOE confirms that under existing regulations, it can take enforcement action and assess civil penalties if a manufacturer fails to properly certify a covered product and retain records. Specifically, the agency clarifies that any failure to certify covered products according to DOE’s rules violates the Energy Policy Conservation Act of 1975 and DOE regulations. DOE will randomly select previously filed certification reports for review, request certification records as needed, and hold manufacturers accountable for failing to certify covered products according to DOE rules.

Think Custom. Think Cooler. NACS 2009

U.S. Cooler manufactures walk-ins with the customer in mind. We understand it is important to produce an affordable, quality, durable, and efficient product. U.S. Cooler specializes in custom sized walk-in coolers and freezers. All of our walk-ins are produced using the highest quality products and the most efficient insulation. Our custom walk-ins are competitively priced and have the shortest lead time in the industry.  U.S. Cooler has the technology and the capability to manufacture walk-ins to fit any size or configuration you are looking for. When you need custom, think U.S. Cooler. Come visit our booth, # 1863, at NACS in Las Vegas from October 21-23, 2009.

A custom cooler example.

USDA Grant Money for Rural Energy Improvements

Note: This article was posted in 2009 and not all grants may still be available.

Government money is available to help your small business become more energy efficient.

The USDA is now offering a grant and loan program to improve energy efficiency in rural areas. The REAP/RES/EEI (Rural Energy for America Program Grants/ Renewable Energy Systems/ Energy Efficiency Improvement Program) Grants Program will provide funds to architectural producers and rural small businesses to purchase and install renewable energy systems and make energy efficient improvements.

The program is designed to assist farmers, ranchers and rural small businesses that are able to demonstrate financial need. Small businesses that are located in rural areas can also apply. Most rural projects that reduce energy use and result in savings for the agricultural producer or small business are eligible as energy efficient projects. These include projects such as retrofitting lighting or insulation, or purchasing or replacing equipment with more efficient units. One of the main requirements of the grant program is that the new equipment must be more energy efficient than the current equipment. An ‘energy audit’ will be performed comparing the energy usage of the old equipment to the new anticipated energy efficient equipment.

Walk-in coolers and freezers qualify for this grant program. Older walk-ins are not as efficient as new units built today. Some of the recent changes in the industry include the requirement to provide higher insulation r-values and refrigeration units with EC motors, which are much more energy efficient than older units. These upgrades will prove your new equipment to be more energy efficient, which will save you money on energy costs.

U.S. Cooler at the 2009 National Restaurant Association Show

nra

U.S. Cooler exhibited at the NRA Show in Chicago, May 16-19, 2009.

Since last NRA, U.S. Cooler has been busy working on new and innovative processes to reduce waste, inventory, time, and costs while increasing productivity. All of these factors together equal savings for dealers and consumers. Providing customers with quality, affordable walk-ins in a convenient amount of time has always been U.S. Cooler’s highest priority.

U.S. Cooler, through their discount dealer program, passes savings on to consumers via the internet. Quick delivery, quality product, and competitive prices have drawn customers from across the nation to buy walk-in coolers and freezers from U.S. Cooler’s internet dealers online. Recently, prices were discounted even further, saving consumers even more money. Check out www.fastcooler.com, the internet’s best resource for discount walk-in cooler and freezer dealers.

Stop by U.S. Cooler booth 1834 to learn more about our discount internet program and how U.S. Cooler can save you money.

California Accepts EISA Regulations

The use of energy has become a commonly discussed issue with environmental and economic concerns. Everyday a significant amount of energy is used for commercial equipment in restaurants, grocery stores, convenience stores, and warehouses. Prior to 2006, there had not been any set regulations on energy usage for commercial refrigeration.

California was one of the first states to set energy regulations for walk-in coolers and freezers. They previously required an envelope insulation rating of R-28 for refrigerators and R-36 for freezers. California was also one of the first to require electronically commutated motors or permanent split capacitor-type motors for refrigeration. Before more states could pose their own requirements on energy consumption, the federal EISA (Energy Independence and Security Act) agreement was signed in 2007. California has fully accepted the EISA requirements, amending their previous appliance energy code.

Department of Energy Meeting

The Department of Energy (DOE) has begun the first step in developing a standardized testing procedure for energy efficiency requirements in walk-in coolers and freezers. On February 4, 2009, the Department of Energy held a public meeting to discuss the proposed standardized testing process. In the Energy Independence and Securities Act of 2007 (EISA), it states there must be a performance-based standard for walk-in coolers and freezers in place by January 1, 2012. This requirement was one of the main topics presented at the meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to familiarize interested parties with the approach and analytical tools that DOE anticipates using in the future. DOE proposed a preliminary document describing their plans for regulating energy efficiency in walk-ins. The meeting provided an opportunity for feedback and comments on the Framework Document.

Ellis Craig (Owner) and Luke Craig (VP of Operations) represented U.S. Cooler by attending the meeting in Washington, D.C. at the beginning of February. The meeting represented just the beginning steps of arriving at a standardized testing method for the walk-in cooler and freezer industry.