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Is Voltage Optimisation Right for Your Business?






Voltage optimisation can play a key role in reducing a site’s energy costs and carbon emissions, and represents an increasingly cost-effective investment into better energy efficiency. While almost any site will see some benefit from voltage optimisation, how much benefit an individual business or site sees will vary depending on a number of factors. 

What is Voltage Optimisation? 

Voltage optimisation is a transformer-based technology used to condition incoming electricity supply from the grid to match the voltage required by a site’s equipment. UK law specifies that mains voltage must be supplied at 230V, with an allowable variance of either 10% above or 6% below. This means that sites actually experience a range of voltages between 216 and 253. 

Typically, National Grid supplies voltage at the upper end of this range, with the majority of sites receiving voltage higher than 230V, and almost invariably higher than the 220V that most equipment is designed to operate at. 

This results in several issues. The first is that a site may be consuming significantly more energy than required, driving up energy costs and associated carbon emissions. Equipment supplied with an overvoltage also increases wear and tear and reduces lifespan. 

Voltage optimisation conditions this incoming voltage to supply equipment with the optimal level of power to operate most efficiently. While this is 220V for many pieces of equipment, HV infrastructure or other equipment that uses a different voltage can also benefit from voltage optimisation. 

Is voltage optimisation a good fit? 

Put simply, almost any business site will see some benefit from voltage optimisation in terms of reduced energy costs and improved sustainability, as well as reduced maintenance costs. However, a number of factors will impact on quite how much benefit you may see. 

The first is the level of voltage that a site is currently being supplied with. Sites that are experiencing a consistent overvoltage will see the most benefit. The level of savings that voltage optimisation offers varies due to this, as well as other factors, but is typically between 6% and 10% of total energy consumption. 

The nature of a business will also play a factor. Businesses with long operating hours and high levels of electricity consumption, such as manufacturing, will see a greater overall impact from energy efficiency technologies like voltage optimisation. Similarly, businesses that maintain important and sensitive electronic equipment that is vulnerable to disruption from minor changes in supplied voltage will be less vulnerable to disruption. 

With energy costs now the biggest concern for 77% of businesses as the energy crisis continues to bite, voltage optimisation represents an increasingly compelling return on investment and can be installed quickly and with minimal disruption to site operations. 

Case Study

Food manufacturer and retailer M I Dickson enlisted the help of Powerstar to improve their energy efficiency and reduce their carbon footprint.

Voltage optimisation was able to deliver a 13% reduction on their total energy consumption, reducing site consumption by more than 8,000 kWh.

Read the full case study here.


Find out how much your business could save through the use of voltage optimisation with Powerstar’s Energy Saving Calculator

Energy Saving Calculator

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