August 2014

by | Aug 1, 2014 | Newsletters

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Most Pumps are Oversized, Wasting Up to 80% in Energy Costs Plus Extra Wear and Tear

DB Sales can help size your pumps and find savings

Are your pumps oversized? This is a very common problem in commercial and industrial buildings. Oversized pumps not only cost more to purchase, they cost more to run, and they wear out more quickly than properly-sized pumps.

Since an engineer can open themselves up to liability if pumps are not large enough, a majority of pumps are oversized resulting in a loss in efficiency.

Steve Mertz, owner of DB Sales, says that oversized pumps are one of the most common problems that he finds. Steve states, “Sometimes we may find as large as a 15 HP motor on a pump, when the client could instead use one high-efficiency 5 HP pumps and get the result that they need.”

Oversized pumps can be inefficient because pumps can’t turn down to proper connecting pump or add air into flow valve.

Therefore, when a pump is oversized, the operating engineer needs to close a balancing value or something else to create an artificial pressure loss. This is very inefficient, often resulting in a waste of 40% to 80% of the energy consumed.

Replacing oversized pumps with properly sized pumps, especially with energy efficient pumps, often presents a great opportunity for financial savings and improved operational efficiency.

Wilo high efficiency pumps can save 80% of the energy over a standard uncontrolled (fixed speed) circulator, or 30% of the energy over a variable speed pump.

DB Sales can potentially help you save 30% to 50% on your electricity bill by assisting you to select proper pumps.

Steve recommends a DB Sales Engineer do a job-walk to make an initial assessment. Then, before replacing all of the pumps, they often recommend doing a pilot to replace a couple pumps with correctly-sized pumps, and then measure the energy savings.

Building Owner Gets $65,000 Rebate by
Replacing Central Utility with Own System

1900 Avenue of the Stars is top-of-the-line when it comes to commercial property in Southern California – a Class-A tower of 28-stories with 600,000 rentable square feet. Located on Los Angeles’ prestigious Westside, the building resides in the premiere business district of Century City.
Topa Management Company is the owner and manager of this facility. They were seeking expert guidance on reducing their HVAC expenses and contracted with WM Group for study and design. WM Group brought in the DB Sales team because of their long track record and vast experience on these types of projects.

Topa had been using the Century City central utility steam plant for many years. However, the cost of buying BTUs from the utility was continually increasing. Topa decided to take control of their energy costs and install a central plant for its own building.

High Efficiency System Cuts Costs
Working with consulting engineers WM Group Engineers and with DB Sales, Topa concluded that they could reduce energy costs by putting in their own high efficiency system. Savings would come in two ways:

1) – Reduced cost per BTU by bringing equipment in house;
2) – lower electrical and gas costs to run the new system.

8 New Boilers; Maximum Efficiency

The system that was designed included 8 Hydrotherm/ Advanced Thermal Hydronics (ATH) model KN20 boilers (2 million BTU/hr. each.) These boilers qualified for the SoCal Gas rebate program, and resulted in about $65K in rebates paid to Topa.
The 8 boilers were installed with a boiler system optimization controller (HydroTherm HeatNet Control System) to control the sequences of the boilers and optimize the operating point of each boiler. This maximizes the efficiency of the boiler system.

All of the boilers were pre-certified at the HydroTherm/ ATH factory by the South Coast AQMD, so when the boilers were installed they were ready to go. DB Sales performed the commissioning on all units.

More energy savings with Wilo pumps

The solution for Topa Management extended beyond boilers and controllers. They also purchased Wilo high efficiency pumps, which feature electronically commutated motors. Steve Mertz said that these pumps are a highly popular part of energy efficiency systems being supplied by DB Sales.

1900 Avenue of the Stars now has its own central plant that is as elegantly designed and well run as the customer-facing elements of the building. With energy costs directly under their control, Topa Management Company has reduced a major element of uncertainty in the demanding business of property ownership and management.

Contact DB Sales today to find ways to qualify for rebates while improving the efficiency of your HVAC system.

“How to Improve Energy Efficiency” – Free Lunch and Learn at Your Office on:

  • Chiller Systems Efficiency & Thermal Storage
  • Pumps Systems Efficiency
  • Boilers Systems Efficiency
  • High Efficiency Domestic Hot Water Systems

Steve Mertz, owner and president of DB Sales, is an expert in energy efficiency systems and utility rebate programs for those systems. His 40 minute “lunch and learn” presentation on high efficiency systems is a lively presentation of frequent operational problems, the solutions implemented, and the results.

Contact him at or (714) 897-1036.

SoCal Manufacturer Ajax Boilers Added to DB Sales Line Card

Ajax Boilers has been added to DB Sales extensive line card. Ajax Boiler is a distinguished boiler company founded in 1919. They design, engineer and manufacturer all of their products from Santa Ana, CA.

DB Sales president Steve Mertz said, “Ajax is a leader in the Southern California market, supplying boilers for healthcare, breweries, industrial, institutional and commercial applications. They are also the market leader in semi-instantaneous heat exchangers and clean steam generators.”

For more information on Ajax Boiler and other boiler services from DB Sales, CLICK HERE.

Dampers and Louvers Industry Leader Air Balance New Partner of DB Sales

Dampers and louvers are an important part of a complete HVAC system. DB Sales has a new sales relationship with Air Balance Inc., which is nationally distinguished for its manufacture of quality fire/life/safety products, louvers and dampers.

Air Balance louvers deliver the highest free area on the market, providing the lowest air side pressure drop and improving facilities’ efficiency. Their fire/smoke dampers improve efficiency and increase the ease of installation.

For more information on Air Balance and other louvers and dampers from DB Sales, CLICK HERE.

About DB Sales

DB Sales is a leading representative firm for a full line of HVAC and plumbing products, serving Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Diego Counties since 1978. The company is distinguished by the high-efficiency equipment expertise of the sales personnel. They are a licensed service contractor and factory certified for all the equipment that they sell.