New solar thermal hot water heating system installed.
Gaylord Hospital is the first hospital in Connecticut to receive state funding through a grant from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) for a solar thermal hot water system. Munger Construction, Consulting Engineering Services (CES), and the Legacy Mechanical Group (LMG) teamed up to provide design build services to complete this project.
The installation of 70 solar thermal collectors that work off sunlight, (not heat from the sun) forms a thermos effect where the evacuated tubes are virtually unaffected by outside temperatures. Even in extreme cold conditions the collectors will produce 160 degrees Fahrenheit of water temperature. The rooftop panels will feed into a 3,750 gallon storage tank from which hot water will be distributed throughout the building.
This system will reduce the annual hot water needs of Gaylord Hospital by an estimated 65%. Gaylord’s dedication to energy efficiency, and being the first hospital in Connecticut to install a new solar thermal hot water heating system, is setting an example for healthcare facilities across the state.
Gaylord Specialty Healthcare
Gaylord Specialty Healthcare serves people who need additional attention for complex or chronic medical issues and rehabilitation needs.
The Business Situation
Gaylord’s long term energy strategy for its 330,000 sq-ft campus is to reduce reliance on imported #2 heating oil and to shrink its carbon footprint. The facility management team learned about the benefits of a solar hot water solution for satisfying its daily appetite for 12,000 gallons of domestic hot water. Top management supported the idea, which set the stage for the CT Clean Energy Finance And Investment Authority to fund two thirds of the $550,000 project. Being part of a broader energy strategy satisfied the board of directors.
Solar Hot Water: Green Solution for the Energy Strategy
“Any commercial user of large amounts of domestic hot water should consider the financial benefits of investing in solar thermal technology” – Jeff Lendroth, Munger Sustainable Energy Consultant
This was uncharted territory for Gaylord so the risk was high. The grant time frame that was elapsing imposed tight time constraints for remaining “grant eligible”.
Four contiguous buildings required separate solar thermal installations. Each of the four roofs differed in construction, creating a challenge for the most efficient, secure and water tight attachments.
72 of the latest technology SolarUS evacuated tube solar hot water panel collector arrays were installed along with a 3750 gallon storage tank from which hot water is pumped throughout the campus.
Munger’s Role in this Project
Munger was general contractor for the installation of solar thermal collectors. This included permitting, infrastructure concrete site work, roof structure and sealing, and mechanical assembly and installation of the solar arrays. Munger completed a solar panel infrastructure which enabled LMG, the prime contractor, to finish other tasks required to complete the job. Munger applied its expertise in buildings and roofs to recommend the correct solution for each rooftop including a dunnage design that elevated the solar arrays 18-inches above the rooftop. This ensured adequate clearance for roof maintenance and repairs.
Economic, Environmental, Social
Gaylord’s is the largest commercial domestic hot water installation in Connecticut and the first hospital in the state to employ an alternate energy program. The system satisfies two thirds of the domestic hot water needs. Although budgeted for an annual savings of 7,000 gallons of heating oil there is a savings potential up to 9,000 gallons. This very attractive “big picture” success joins other Gaylord energy efficiency initiatives to enhance credibility with the board of directors relative to future sustainable energy initiatives.
“Munger made a strong impression on us. They get it right the first time around. Being customer focused with proactive suggestions, quality workmanship and available when needed is an unusual combination for a contractor”. – Mark Vere, Gaylord Director Facility Support Services
Teamwork Essential for Success
“The key to this project’s success was a great team effort”, said David DeMaio, Munger president. “The project went seamlessly. Everyone had a strong sense of responsibility for their role”.
❖ CES [Consulting Engineering Services]
❖ LMG [Legacy Mechanical Group] prime
contractor, installation and maintenance
• Munger teamed with LMG to ensure on-time
completion in order to retain grant eligibility
• Munger recommended modifications to
SolarUS products that will enable more
efficient future installations
❖ Munger sub-contractors:
• Contractors Steel Supply – Co-design the
dunnage and support system
• Quality Roofing Services – seal and weld
EPDM roof penetrations
“Munger made a strong impression by applying its building and roofing expertise to recommend the right solar thermal hot water solution for each rooftop. They get it right the first time. Being customer focused with proactive suggestions, quality workmanship and being available when needed is an unusual combination for a contractor”
Mark Vere, Director of Facility Support Services Gaylord Specialty Healthcare