Trap Program Reduces University’s Steam Costs by 21%


“The first step in our process was to identify the defective traps.  The second step was to repair or replace those traps. Although I suspected that we had traps that needed attention,
I was surprised at the 31% failure rate of the first survey, says Herman.

After the first round of testing, Herman deployed his crew to fix or replace the failed steam traps as indicated by Dr. Trap and then a second round of testing occurred. Results were impressive during the second round of testing by cutting the steam trap failure rate in half from 31.4 percent to 15.7 percent. Steam loss was cut by more than half as well from 15 million pounds of steam to 5.637 million pounds of steam. Also, the university was pleased to know that the monetary loss of $96,396 was slashed to just $35,769.

Finally a third round of testing was conducted nine months later and showed steam losses down to an impressive 10.7 percent with a monetary loss of only $22,002. The verdict was in and in less than two years, the University of Notre Dame cut their losses by over 21% not only saving quite a bit of steam and money, but also reducing CO2 emissions because the energy used to generate steam was minimized given the losses were eliminated dramatically.

According to Herman, the steam trap repairs have resulted in savings of more than $70,000 in annual steam losses.  “I have scheduled three surveys thus far and we have progressed from a 31% failure rate to 16% in 2010, and 11% on the last survey.  Our goal is to reach the 5% Best in Class rate,” says Herman.

Harris was happy with the results and attributed the success to the training sessions held at Armstrong International’s headquarters in Three Rivers, Michigan. “Education is key, training and educating clients helps them implement a program that can save them money. In the case of Notre Dame, it reduced their energy consumption quite a bit, but it all started with first being a partner in the process,” says Harris.

“Our technical representative from Affiliated, Chad Harris, has been instrumental in the continuous improvement,” said Herman.

Affiliated Steam and Hot Water also actively educates clients about being trap active inside their “steam demonstration,” room in Alsip, Ill. “An educated consumer is an empowered consumer,” says Rick Lee, president of Affiliated Steam and Hot Water. “We feel that our steam trap seminars not only demonstrate the importance of having a maintenance program but also demonstrates the quality of our products and our commitment to customer service,” he said.

For more information about becoming, “trap active,” or to learn more about Dr. Trap, please call 800-424-5392 today.

About the Author: Joseph Sanchez is president of Virtual Marketing Consultants a marketing firm specializing in case study article writing for the HVAC and pumping industries. For more information visit

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Posted by on Nov 1st, 2011 and filed under Feature Story. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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