English (English)

Refurbishing your processing equipment could help you to save thousands in energy costs — keeping your production viable and your operations running.

Whoever said “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it” never worked in advanced manufacturing in the midst of an energy crisis.

“It is expected that about a third [of businesses] will face another hefty rise on 1 October,” the BBC reports. Ramping down production isn’t an option. Amidst continued uncertainty over government support, many operators have been left wondering what they can do to reduce consumption, cut costs, and protect the profitability of their operations.

Refurbishment can help. But how, and how much could you save? Read on to find out more. 

Got a question about refurbished processing equipment? Download our buyer’s guide or contact us and one of our experts will get in touch. 

Refurbishment can directly improve energy efficiency

Today, there are many upgrades available designed to improve the energy efficiency of your processing equipment. When installed, they will help your machines to consume less energy and operate more efficiently.

A perfect example of this is our energy-saving system

The system works by automating the shutdown and restart of all your vacuum furnaces, removing your reliance on manual processes and safely reducing your energy costs.

When many furnaces in operation today were first built, this technology didn’t exist. By refurbishing your vacuum furnaces, you can improve their specifications and performance — in this case, their energy efficiency specifically — without having to invest in a new machine.

Did you know…

If available, the system can switch quench/purge gas from argon to less-expensive nitrogen in response to the loaded program cycle, further reducing costs.

Learn more about how to reduce your vacuum furnace’s energy consumption. 

Refurbishment can improve performance generally

Energy consumption can also rise when your machines’ performance falls. Optimising your machines that are tired, outdated, or generally underperforming can be a quick win.

Those machines that are the best candidates for refurbishment generally fit into one of the following categories:

  • Your current equipment is run down, impacting performance.
  • Your equipment frequently breaks down, growing costs and increasing risk unnecessarily.
  • Your equipment no longer complies with the latest industry legislation.
  • Your equipment has reached the end of its life.

Does any equipment from across your current setup spring to mind? These are likely where performance is below what it could be were the machine operating to its optimum capabilities and this is where you will make the biggest gains by refurbishing them.

And the more efficiently your operations are running, the more energy efficient they are.

“We can transform an old, unreliable autoclave into an efficient, modern system featuring the latest technology — and at a fraction of the cost of a new machine.” Autoclave Oven Refurbishments and Upgrades, VFE

How much could you save?

Refurbishing your process equipment will cost you less money up front than buying a new vacuum furnace and, crucially, it can save you big in the long-term on your energy bills.

You can easily save 10% on your energy bill by refurbishing your hot zone, for example.

For the energy-saving system’s electrical-power saving features, VFE has customer feedback of an average £15k saving per year, per furnace. These savings are based on 2020 energy costs and will be significantly higher given current prices.

For the gas switching, nitrogen is approximately 25% of the cost of argon so every cycle able to be operated on nitrogen rather than argon will save that proportionate cost (dependent on furnace volume).

Don’t miss: 3 Technology Solutions to Rising Energy Costs Across Your Manufacturing Operations

Start saving today with VFE

Energy prices are one of those things that’s somewhat out of your hands — but as you can hopefully see, there are steps you can take to minimise their impact and take back control.

Over the last few years, we’ve proven our commitment to helping our customers keep their operations running, adapting our projects and developing new products specifically designed to improve efficiencies, minimise costs, and help our customers through difficult times.

In the midst of this latest crisis, our refurbishment team is on-hand to upgrade your machines, reduce your costs, and maintain the viability of your production.

The options explored in this article can be implemented in little to no time, with immediate impacts on your operational costs and your bottom line. Our energy-system in particular is popular for its power monitoring capabilities, which shows power consumed (and estimated power saved) in kWh, £ and kg.CO2).

This can be downloaded or sent electronically, meaning it’s never been easier for you to track your energy usage — and share just how much you’ve helped the business to save. 

Learn more about our:

Got a question about refurbished processing equipment? Download our buyer’s guide or contact us and one of our experts will get in touch.

Want to find out more?