Before: Metal halide lamps in two Wenatchee Racquet and Athletic Club tennis courts used 19,980 watts per court.
After: New T5 fluorescent lighting uses just 8,420 watts per court.
WRAC tennis courts ace an upgrade
Muffed serves or missed shots on the indoor tennis courts at the Wenatchee Racquet and Athletic Club (WRAC) can’t be blamed on poor lighting anymore. The 37 noisy, dim metal halide light fixtures previously used on two of the indoor tennis courts have been replaced with quiet, bright, instant-on T5 fluorescent light fixtures.
Manager Evy Gillin said the old lamps required long warm-up times and had to be left on constantly when the club was open. The new fluorescents provide bright light instantly and are on switches that can be operated at the club’s front desk.
On the other two courts, the original lighting system with 44 outdated, eight-lamp T12 fluorescent fixtures has also been replaced with 32 six-lamp T5 fixtures, emitting far greater light levels.
Energy savings from installing fluorescents and LEDs (light-emitting diodes) at the tennis and racquetball courts, at the club’s outdoor pool and in the club building are estimated at 362,618 kilowatt hours per year, enough to power 16 Chelan County homes. The WRAC received $43,602 from Chelan PUD’s Resource$mart program to help offset its total cost of $64,293.
WRAC member Brian Wengreen, a retired PUD engineer, volunteered to coordinate this project with help from more than 40 member volunteers. Their volunteer labor made the project affordable for the club, Gillin said. Key to those efforts were Brian Gundersen, Dick Lester, Randy Smith, Ted Brisbine of Brisbine Electric and retired electrician Heinz Schlipf.
One more project is planned to complete relighting the entire club.
Stemilt upgrade is a fruitful endeavor
Stemilt managers say they expect to quickly recoup their investment in new energy-efficient lighting through lower electric bills at their processing/packing/shipping plant on Euclid Avenue in Wenatchee.
“I can see clearly now” is the song employees are singing at the Stemilt processing plant on Euclid Avenue in Wenatchee after lighting was upgraded in over 300,000 square feet of space.
OK, they’re not really singing, and you couldn’t hear it over the hum of forklifts and conveyor belts if they were. But Steve Frodsham, the fruit processor’s electrical administrator, says employees love the new lighting at the sprawling plant where apples, pears and cherries are received, processed, stored and shipped.
Energy-efficient LEDs on motion sensors now illuminate many of the cold storage rooms, providing immediate light when someone enters. Frodsham said he knew it was time to replace the plant’s numerous metal halide lights, so he tested fluorescents before moving to LEDs. But even the most modern fluorescent tube lamps failed to come on quickly enough to light rooms for forklift drivers as they moved in and out. Cold was a factor, he said, since most of the 100-plus storage units are kept at a chilly 32 degrees. (LED lights love the cold. They last longer and are brighter.)
Fluorescent lights are being used above packing lines, in hallways and elsewhere, though, and they’re a big improvement, Frodsham said.
Beckstead Electric of Wenatchee installed the lighting. Jim White, Chelan PUD engineer, arranged funding from the PUD and documented energy savings.
White said 1,400 light fixtures were retrofitted or replaced at a cost of $605,704. Chelan PUD’s Resource$mart program provided $435,048 of the cost. Projected annual savings is 2,900,000 kilowatt hours — enough to power 145 homes.
“This is an old facility,” Frodsham said. “A general lighting concept was never part of its evolution. When Jim and Beckstead (Electric) came in we were able to engineer it to suit our needs. A lot of areas that didn’t have sufficient light are now well-lit.
“Lighting makes a big difference in how people feel and how they perform,” he added. “We couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”
A packing line at Stemilt’s Euclid Avenue plant is illuminated by new fluorescent lighting. Chelan PUD’s Resource$mart program helps pay for energy-efficient upgrades at local businesses.