- Written by Staff
ORLANDO, Fla. — When developer Orange Lake Resorts, operator of seven Holiday Inn Club Vacations® resort destinations, announced that they were taking steps towards minimizing the impact of the company’s carbon footprint, they began in the laundry.
For nearly 30 years, Orange Lake Resorts operated the laundry facility for their Orlando resort using three 600-pound washer extractors and six 200- pound dryers. They would process 1,800 pounds of laundry per hour with 3 gallons of water used per pound. The day’s work which consisted of 28,800 pounds of laundry was completed over two shifts.
“We had a facility that was configured when this was a much smaller resort,” said Scott Hedrick, VP, Rooms Division, Orange Lake Resorts. “And when you look at it, if you were to design a laundry for the size we are now, you wouldn’t have installed the equipment that was in there.”
Prior to laundry’s installation of new equipment, team members were using 600-pound washers to process goods. It was extremely manual work since the Orange Lake staff would have to sort goods by type, manually load soiled goods in the washer, and manually unload heavier, damp goods from the washer.
Then the team members would manually split the goods up among three 200-pound dryers and send other items to the flatwork aisle. “That type of processing goods was not ergonomically friendly,” says Hendrick. “And it just didn’t make sense. So we began to seek out a proposal that would not only make the laundry ergonomically friendly, it would save money on utilities.”
With the help of Bill Bell of Steiner-Atlantic, a local equipment distributor, the wheels were set in motion for a redesign of the existing resort’s laundry.
At the center of the 30,000 square foot re-designed laundry is the Milnor 76039-07 Pulse Flow 150lb CBW system with single stage press, shuttle, four double cake system dryers, and a four compartment weighing loading conveyor. This replaced five of the 200-pound dryers and three 600-pound washers.
Aside from the ergonomic benefits of the tunnel over large openpocket washers, the tunnel’s process times are shorter and quality of linens and towels are enhanced, now enjoying a longer lifespan. In addition, Orange Lake has doubled their hourly production, eliminating the need for a costly second shift. The new Milnor CBW has joined a Speed Check Cart dump and soil conveyor, two smaller Milnor washers, 275- and 140-pound, and a 60-pound Unimac Washer. There is a 200-pound ADC dryer that was retained for the smaller washers. The laundry also has a Fulton 50 hp steam boiler with a Lochnvar steam bundler tank for hot water storage.
The new equipment processes 4,000 pounds of laundry per hour, using only 0.3 to 0.4 gallons of fresh water per pound, with the day’s work of 30,000 pounds of laundry finishing in just one shift. Prior to installing the CBW, the laundry’s water consumption was three gallons per pound.
The reduction in utilities and 90 percent water consumption were not the only benefits associated with the new equipment. The CBW’s four-compartment CONWA (loading conveyor) improves labor conditions because it requires less handling by the staff. Once sorted, the soiled goods are loaded on the conveyor to be discharged in the tunnel’s load chute. After the wash, goods are automatically discharged to an MP1604 40- Bar single stage press, which removes excess moisture from the goods. After extraction, an automatic cake shuttle transports the goods to waiting dryers. All of this automation has improved the working conditions in the laundry.
The Orlando resort, with 2,478 villas and an average of 511,853 annual guests, processes eight million pounds of laundry per year. The new equipment allows the company the ability to grow their laundry operation to process up to approximately 10.5 million pounds of laundry per year.
“In addition to the savings seen in natural gas and water, the laundry is processing approximately 30,000 pounds of goods in an 8-hour shift,” says Bell. “Before it would take 16 hours to process 30,000 pounds. Now they have the ability to grow another 2-3 million pounds a year without having to re-build or add to the laundry.”
“It’s a step towards reducing our impact on the environment on a daily basis and changing how we operate to create significant efficiencies and cost savings while positively impacting the guest experience through improved linen quality. It’s also a pleasure to improve the everyday workplace for our skilled laundry team members, who are truly the ‘heart of our house,’” says Hedrick
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