Industrial Controls » How Much Energy Does Combustion Efficiency Actually Save?

How Much Energy Does Combustion Efficiency Actually Save?

With this comprehensive guide and the right products from Industrial Controls, you will be able to communicate to your customers the value of combustion efficiency and how much you can help them save.

Everyone loves saving money. There is a direct correlation between combustion efficiency and the amount of energy required to provide comfort or process heating. As the price of fuel continues to rise, it becomes more important to have the heat-producing equipment performing as efficiently as possible. Small percentages of improvement can often produce savings far in excess of the cost of implementation. Below are some common questions and answers regarding combustion efficiency.


Q:  What is combustion efficiency?

Combustion efficiency is the calculation/measurement, in percentage, of how well the equipment is burning a specific fuel. Complete combustion efficiency (100%) would extract all the energy available in the fuel. However, 100% combustion efficiency is not realistically achievable. Various combustion processes produce combustion efficiencies from 0% to 95+%.

Combustion efficiency calculations assume complete fuel combustion and are based on three factors:

  1. The chemistry of the fuel.
  2. The net temperature of the stack gases.
  3. The percentage of oxygen or CO2 by volume after combustion.

If your calculation shows that your equipment is losing 25% of the heating value of the fuel through stack losses, your equipment is running at 75% efficiency.


Q:  What do I have to do to measure for combustion efficiency?

You only need to measure gas concentration (oxygen or carbon dioxide) and temperature to determine combustion efficiency.

Although other gases (NOx, CO, SO2) do not significantly affect combustion efficiency, these gases are an important safety and environmental concern.


Q: What savings in dollars can be expected by increasing combustion efficiency?

The following table indicates the dollar savings that can be expected through improvements in combustion efficiency:

combustion savings table



Reprinted from information supplied by Bacharach, Inc.


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