LEXINGTON, KY -- With prices going up – everyone is looking for ways to compensate. Lexington’s Holiday Inn North is no different. They were seeking a way to cut some corners in the laundry for a 302-room hotel that processes sheets, towels, terry and napery.
That’s when Bert Mullins, the director of rooms introduced ozone into the laundry. Mullins had a background in chemistry from college, so he understood the concept and chemistry behind the use of ozone.
“I spoke to our GM, Mike Curd,” says Bert. “When I told him we’d be turning down gas consumption and saving money, his ears perked up. He pushed the idea up the line. We are owned and managed by Interconnential Hotels Group,” he adds. “They have also been looking into ways to be more environmental and this was a good opportunity to not just walk the walk – but to talk the talk.”
In March of 2007, an Articlean ozone system was purchased for the Holiday Inn laundry that works with two 100-pound Unimac washers, two 65-pound Unimac washers, a 65-pound Milnor washer two 150-pound Cissell dryers, two 100-pound Unimacs dryers, and one 75-pound Cissell dryer. The laundry also uses a Chicago Comet for finishing.
Although the initial installation could be considered costly, at approximately $20,000, Bert says that in nine months the laundry has been able to show that amount in savings through less gas, water and detergent.
“We annually produce just over 1 million pounds of room and banquet linens,” says Bert Mullins, director of rooms. “We have realized amazing savings since our ozone installation. During the first seven months we had spent 5.5% of total revenue on energy costs, down 1% from last year.”
A further savings coup Mullins noted, is that as prices for utilities climb, lower consumption allowed further cost savings. “We experienced a savings of 12% for the same two time periods, April through November of ‘06 and ’07. That pattern continued in ‘08 as the budget was maintained without increase. “No matter what prices do, we won’t jump. We’re inline with budget expenses.”
Net benefits contribute to and extend beyond monetary benefits, says Mullins. And, they are equally important. “Dependency on harsh chemicals and hot water has decreased and now we’re seeing a longer life span for linens and terry products. That adds to reduced replacement costs. Less drying time is also required – saving even more for the laundry. Employees process linens more quickly and efficiently. Laundry rooms are cooler for greater comfort than when hot water occupies washers and dryers run continuously. And we’re reducing our carbon footprint. It’s a win-win.”
Quick Rinse - News From Around The World
Ecolab Acquires Dober Chemical’S Textile Care Business
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Ecolab Inc. a leader in cleaning, sanitizing, food safety and infection prevention products and services announced it has purchased the commercial laundry division of Dober Chemical Corporation. The acquisition includes Dober’s laundry chemical and waste water treatment and Ultrax dispensing businesses as well as an exclusive partnership to market and provide key components of its Spindle monitoring software.
“Dober is respected throughout the industry for its innovative monitoring technology, product chemistry and commitment to service – qualities that complement our own strengths at Ecolab,” said Brian Henke, vice president and general manager, Ecolab Textile Care North America. “As we expand our North American commercial laundry business, innovation and service excellence will continue to be our top priority as we partner with our customers to deliver unsurpassed value to run their operations more efficiently, sustainably and cost effectively.”
“Ecolab and Dober share the same customercentric approach to service and innovative technology,” said John Dobrez, president Dober Chemical Corp. “This is an exciting development because it builds on the strengths of both companies to move the industry forward.”
Through this agreement, Spindle Technologies,a division of Dober, is forming a strategic alliance with Ecolab Textile Care in an exclusive licensing agreement for its ChemWatch Software technology and the OPTRAX Utility Module.
“There will be no movement of people as they currently all operate remotely,” said Henke. “The Dober leadership team is very skilled and respected in the industry. We plan to have them as part of the team moving forward. During the transition, both businesses will operate as usual and we do not expect there to be any changes in the service the customers are used to receiving.”