9.06.2021 | reading time approx. 3 min.


The replacement of old fans with new, efficient ones, has paid off

With huge savings in energy costs and at long last a pleasant working environment again, the replacement of the old fans for new, efficient ones has really paid off. Sometimes it’s the small things that a make big difference. This can also be said in the case of the renovation work in the popular McDonald’s restaurant in Wörgl/Austria. The old inlet fan had done its job for many years but over the course of time the background noise and humming sound of the energy meter had grown louder and louder, the level of performance had dropped and energy costs increased.

Everyone’s talking about energy savings and protecting the environment – we’re doing it!

That’s the stated corporate philosophy of digiControl GmbH and its Managing Directors André Fill and Robert Slavkovsky. The company, based in Wildschönau/Tyrol, Austria, is a specialist in heating, air conditioning and ventilation. The professionals took on the task of overhauling the aging ventilation system for McDonald’s in Wörgl. The solution to the problem of the existing system, which was no longer functioning properly, was quickly identified: to upgrade the ventilation system and preferably without interrupting the running of the business, or the sale of the burgers, fries and other specialties of this fast food restaurant, so popular with the general public in Wörgl.

Fan replacement, without interrupting the running of the business, with Retrofitblue

For the planned conversion, the specialists in Wildschönau enlisted the support of the Austrian office in Linz of ZIEHL-ABEGG, the global market leader in the field of ventilation systems, control and drive technology, which is able to offer intelligent solutions through its special upgrading programme RETROFITBLUE, even without the need for major conversion work. The plan was to use state-of-the-art, high efficiency fans – blue technology from ZIEHL-ABEGG. The conversion work was started by replacing the old fan, which was still belt-driven, with high efficiency, biomimetic ZAbluefin fans using intelligent ECblue energy-saving motor technology. The conversion was carried out quickly and successfully in perfect collaboration without the need to interrupt the ongoing operation of the business.

This fan replacement has paid off

With the new, high efficiency fans, the system can now handle 18,000 cubic meters of air without any problems and all of this without having to carry out any complex, complete conversions beforehand. “None of the ventilation ducts had to be altered” says Robert Slavkovsky, Managing Director of digiCONTROL GmbH. This also had the advantage of enabling the conversion to be carried out speedily

Small conversion in the ventilation system at McDonald’s in Wörgl/Austria using the Retrofitblue  concept from ZIEHL-ABEGG. Speedy replacement of old technology with high efficiency, biomimetic fans with the intelligent motor technology ECblue from ZIEHL-ABEGG

Fast Return-on-Investment (ROI)

The plan entailed the use of two energy-saving ZAbluefin fans because “should one of them fail, you can guarantee basic ventilation with the other one – whilst with the previous single fan solution, a failure would have meant a shutdown” says Christian Gorbach, Business Development Manager at ZIEHL-ABEGG in Linz, with responsibility for Retrofitblue projects. “In all the projects we have handled with partner companies so far, it’s been shown that the investment costs in our high-tech fans and the associated adapted control system are recouped relatively quickly through the achievable savings (in electricity, lower operating/service costs, etc.). Many were surprised by the quick Return-of-Invest [Return-on-Investment] (ROI) and convenience of being able to regulate the system to suit requirements”.

Wörgl/Austria – Environmental protection also starts with the right air handling and ventilation systems so that we and our future generations can live a healthy life in our country. 

25% savings in electricity costs – climate-friendly operation  

Thanks to the small conversion of the ventilation system, electricity costs have now been reduced by more than 25% and the system operates significantly quieter. This is the result of the outstanding, innovative ziehl-abegg fans with their unique, biomimetic design and the intelligent motor technology ECblue. The impellers, developed on the basis of findings inspired by nature, show how the sustainability of the natural world can be combined with engineering to enable customers to benefit from energy efficiency. And the Retrofitblue example in Wörgl illustrates something else: “The sample project shows very nicely how you can achieve a high saving with relatively little expense, to the benefit of the user and the environment alike,” explains Kurt Kerschbaummair, Managing Director of ZIEHL-ABEGG Austria

More information on the ZIEHL-ABEGG upgrading programme RETROFITBLUE is available here