RANCHO CORDOVA (CBS13) — A new, large-scale cooling system comes with a bold claim: It cuts energy costs for businesses like never before.
A Rancho Cordova machine shop teamed up with SMUD to test out the system that supposedly uses up to 80 percent less energy than traditional air conditioning.READ MORE: 'Just Trying To Do Good': Modesto Junior College Professor Runs To Support Struggling Students
When Smud and Tri Tool heard the sales pitch, they thought it was too good to be true. But they’re realizing energy savings that are unheard of.
With temperatures above 90 degrees outside, it’s a crisp and comfortable 75 degrees inside Tri Tool.
Facilities manager Joel Walton showed off the company’s new cooling system that’s one-of-a-kind in the United States.
Walton says its using an astounding 80 percent less energy than their old system, and it’s more effective by far.
Called the Climate Wizard, it’s a water-based system as opposed to traditional freon-based units. The air coming in has very little humidity.
The Australian company behind the Climate Wizard says because of how it works, the system actually becomes more efficient the hotter the weather gets.READ MORE: Multi-Vehicle Crash Closes Northbound I-5 Lanes Near Highway 50 Connector In Sacramento
Tri Tool is collecting a dizzying array of data as they test the system in cooperation with SMUD. The utility is looking for new ways to reduce peak power use when electricity is the most expensive.
“They can either build more power plants or get creative to reduce loads so they don’t have to do that, so that’s what we’re trying to do here,” Walton said.
If the technology catches on, SMUD may offer rebates to entice other businesses to make the switch. That’s because the major drawback appears to be the steep startup cost.
But Tri Tool says the Climate Wizard will pay for itself in just two years, and they’re no longer skeptics.
“This was a perfect solution,” Walton said. “There’s nothing else we could buy that would work as well as this has worked.”
Tri Tool says the system has also improved air quality in the shop. Fresh air is constantly flowing in, instead of recirculated air like traditional cooling systems.MORE NEWS: How Fast Is Too Fast? As California Starts to Reopen, COVID Risk Still Remains
For now, the system is intended for large-scale businesses, not homes.