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On-Demand Industrial Ventilation System as an Investment


Ecogate On-Demand Industrial Ventilation System as an Investment


Capital Expense or Investment?


Over two decades of experience in the dust collection and industrial ventilation industry has revealed a common stumbling block for many companies: justifying the cost of an On-Demand Industrial Ventilation System. Manufacturing operators are often convinced of the system's benefits, yet struggle to secure management approval for the purchase. However, the potential savings generated by an Ecogate On-Demand System can make this decision financially straightforward with the right analytical approach.


In this article, we’ll break down how the purchase of an Ecogate On-Demand System is actually a nearly guaranteed investment, unlike many others that come with extensive risk.



Easy to Make Investment


Imagine if your bank offered a $200,000 Certificate of Deposit that yielded 35% interest over 20 years. The decision to purchase such a CD, eagerly anticipating a substantial return on investment, would be clear. Even without immediate cash on hand, securing a loan at an annual interest rate of 7% would still net a return of 28%. Presented this way, the financial decision seems remarkably straightforward.



How an Ecogate System Makes Financial Sense


While the Bank CD example may seem too good to be true, many Ecogate users are indeed realizing financial returns at or above this level. But how is this possible?


Incentives

Ecogate customer savings often begin even before the project's installation. Many local or national electricity suppliers offer a capital investment rebate, which we've seen range from 10-40% of the total project cost. Ecogate can help you identify and apply for any rebates you may be eligible for.


Profit Margins

Capital expenditures associated with the products that a business manufactures and sells are perceived as “good news/bad news”. Good in that this often means expansion is needed but bad in that who wants to spend more money! It is possible to view the addition of an Ecogate system to this expansion as more bad news in that it is not MANDATORY for the expansion and could be perceived as a means to save some capital investment money.


What needs to be kept in mind though is that an Ecogate system will reduce the cost of electricity for the life of the system generating an overall reduction in cost (net savings). The time frame to be considered needs to be multi-year not exclusively the day of purchase. When in doubt it helps to remember the old adage - “ a penny saved is a penny earned!”


When we say that an Ecogate system can save you on average 60% of your dust collector’s electricity bill, what we’re really saying is that an Ecogate system can earn you around 60% of your dust collector’s electricity bill - 60% saved is 60% earned.


Higher profit margins are what every business aims for. To achieve this there are two approaches.


Sales - Costs = Profit

Increase sales and/or lower costs. While your other capital expenditures can help you increase sales, an Ecogate On-Demand system can help you lower your costs, and thus work towards the same goal - higher profit margins!


Equipment Lifecycle

A typical dust collection system has a life cycle of 20-30 years, that’s plenty of years of an Ecogate system paying you every month. Beneath the surface, that’s also 20-30 years of maintenance costs! You've already invested significantly in your equipment and machinery, so why spend more than necessary on maintenance?


Machines don’t last forever, therefore the goal becomes to make them last as long as possible before the inevitable higher maintenance costs arise. An Ecogate On-Demand system will not only make your entire system more efficient but will also offer you workstation utilization data to help you do preventative maintenance. Here’s an article covering this in more detail - spoiler, the hidden maintenance costs can be higher than everything we’re discussing here.


Flexibility

We talked about capital expenditures and for the most part, they’re needed to grow your business. However, there are definitely some instances where they are not needed, and having the option to skip on a capital expense could mean thousands of dollars back into your pocket.


Say you have a dust collector that can support a specific number of workstations. What happens after you’ve reached that number of workstations but you find that you still need one or two more? Traditionally, you’d have to buy a new collector or run your current collector at less than desired velocity. The new collector is a lot of money and it also comes with a permanent increase in electricity and maintenance costs. With Ecogate, you have the flexibility to add those two additional workstations without needing to purchase a new collector. You can read more about this plus see an actual case study that benefitted from this.


On a smaller scale, say you needed to move, add or remove workstations. Having to guess how to reroute ducts or which machines to move where is not efficient and can cost you time and money. An Ecogate system with a greenBOX MASTER gives you the ability to do this easily with an intuitive interface you can reconfigure your dust collection system. This plus your workstation utilization data can help you be efficient and quick whenever a change is needed.


Other Savings

Beyond the direct benefits, an Ecogate system offers additional savings. For instance, HVAC costs can be significantly reduced. Your HVAC system works hard to maintain a comfortable temperature in your factory, compensating for the air extracted by your collector. An On-Demand system operates efficiently, minimizing the volume of air you need to replace in your building, thus reducing costs. Here it is in more detail.


If your factory is in a cold region, then you’re familiar with the additional costs this brings. First, as you know, during freezing seasons you must keep air moving through your dust collector filters - otherwise, they malfunction. This means that the system must be on during weekends as well, regardless of production, just to keep the filters from freezing. With Ecogate, you have an Anti-Freezing Mode which can have HVAC savings add up really quickly.



7 Year ROI Case Study


While we have multiple projects each year with an achieved return on investment (ROI) of under 2 years, let's review a recently completed project with a longer time to recoup the associated investment. Here’s a real case study with an ROI of 7 years! Let’s unpack this project to see how it was still a good financial decision.


Canyon Creek Cabinets

The project was done back in 2019 and called for $206,105 for an Ecogate system to be installed. Before we signed this project off, we knew that there was a nice incentive that Canyon Creek Cabinet could use. In their case, they qualified for one that covered over 50% of the project costs! After all reviews and tests were completed, the incentive turned out to be $110,895. This left Canyon Creek with a net investment of $95,210.


Even after such a nice rebate, the ROI was 7 years. This is only factoring in the direct electricity savings from the dust collector, which as we know is not the only savings an Ecogate system brings. The yearly savings was estimated to be $18,520. With all this info, let’s do the math.

$206,105

Project Cost

- $110,895

Rebate

$95,210

Net Investment


YEAR

CALCULATIONS

RETURN AGAINST ORIGINAL INVESTMENT

Year 1

-$95,210 Net Investment + $18,520 Yearly Savings

-$76,690

Year 2

-$76,690 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

-$58,170

Year 3

-$58,170 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

-$39,650

Year 4

-$39,650 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

-$21,130

Year 5

-$21,130 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

-$2,610

Year 6

-$2,610 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

+$15,910

Year 7

+$15,910 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

+$34,430

Year 8

+$34,430 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

+$52,950

Year 9

+$52,950 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

+$71,470

Year 10

+$71,470 + $18,520 Yearly Savings

+$89,990


The system will continue in operation for several years after, but for this article we’re stopping at 10 years. In the ten years, Canyon Creek would save an estimated total of $185,200. Add another ten and the math is super simple. In theory, this would keep going and going similarly to the bank offering you a CD with guaranteed interests.


Of course, Canyon Creek is and will continue to benefit from all other savings that were not used in the calculations above. This would only bring the ROI closer and the yearly savings higher.



Key Benefits Beyond Savings


As great as the rebate and all these savings are, Canyon Creek and many others choose Ecogate for benefits beyond savings. An Ecogate On-Demand system offers many other benefits.


Built for the Future

Sometimes you need to expand and other times you need to optimize your factory floor. Adding, removing, or replacing with no workstation utilization data can be very costly. With an Ecogate smart system, you can do so confidently as you’ll have the data needed to make tactical decisions and our greenBOX MASTER comes with an intuitive interface that allows you to easily reconfigure everything.


Brings your Factory into Industry 4.0

The fridge, vacuums, cars, lightbulbs, everything is getting smarter, yet many factories are staying behind. In the new era of Industry 4.0, those who don’t embrace the technology advantages will suffer greatly. An Ecogate system offers you full automation with remote access & analytics. Our data analytics automatically streamlines daily reporting to maintenance managers and monthly overview reporting to the management team.


Reliability in Industrial Settings

Your factory needs to produce high-quality products at high volumes. This calls for heavy-duty machinery as well as fast-paced environments. Your factory does not have room for cheap installations as the maintenance and replacements will cut into your production. We have tested our gates in the toughest environments to be able to offer you the best reliability for your peace of mind. Tough and made to last in an industrial setting.


Improves Factory Safety

Offering a safe work environment is enough reason to have high safety standards. As if that wasn’t enough, failing to do so can result in some of the most costly catastrophes your factory can encounter. An Ecogate system significantly reduces your chances of a factory fire or explosion. It also reduces other risks such as air quality for your employees - which if ignored can lead to fatal health conditions. The cherry on top, Ecogate is the only system to offer NFPA 664 compliancy.


Helps the Environment

There are two environments an Ecogate system will help you with. The first one is your factory floor. Systems with Ecogate are significantly quieter, which studies have shown improves productivity. On a larger scale, you’d also be doing your part for the planet by lowering your carbon footprint - which many shareholders are demanding that factories take responsibility. If that doesn’t attract you, know that many energy companies are offering rebates because producing the same amount of electricity saved is three times more costly.



Conclusion


Every year the demand to reach a net zero carbon emissions increases and many customers are taking advantage of this opportunity. Our mission is to improve the lives of the people we serve, contribute to the health of our planet, and to increase the profits of our customers - People, Planet, Profits. If you'd like to explore how your factory can benefit from said investment, feel free to reach out to us!




Author, David Vera