Utility Rebates Pay for More than 50% of Convenience Store's Energy Efficiency Improvements
Hunt’s Mobil, a family owned convenience store, gas station, and auto repair shop has been serving the Marlborough, MA community for over 30 years. Like many of his neighbors, store owner Craig Hunt was frustrated with the rising cost of electricity in Massachusetts and the impact it was having on his operating expenses. Overhead costs in the convenience store industry have been growing and the recent 37 percent electricity rate hike made his margins even tighter.
Although his expenses continued to grow, Craig had never considered energy efficiency as a solution.
"Many people had come in and spoken to me about energy efficiency, but I’ve found over the years if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. The promises that were being made seemed outlandish," said Hunt.
Despite his reservations, Craig agreed to let Trust Energy Solutions upgrade his business when the local utility company increased the initial energy efficiency incentive by 20%. The new incentive covered 56% of the total project cost.
Trust Energy Solutions designed a customized solution for Hunt’s Mobil, which included interior and exterior LED lighting, as well as LED lighting within the coolers. Trust Energy also installed new refrigeration fans and door heaters that generate two-thirds less heat, along with energy-regulating controls to easily monitor the temperature inside the coolers. Trust Energy also handled the utility rebate process, provided financing options, and managed the installation process from start to finish. Trust Energy has continued to work with Craig to help him market his convenience store as a green business in order to build loyalty and reach new customers.
“I would definitely recommend Trust Energy Solutions,” said Hunt. "My brother also owns a Mobil station and he did a similar upgrade [with a different consulting firm]. I don’t believe he’s seen half the support I’ve received from Trust Energy."
Prior to the retrofit, Hunt’s Mobil was using an average of 6,550 kWh of electricity each month. After the energy efficiency improvements, the store is using an average of 4,250 kWh, a 35% reduction.
Since the retrofit, Craig’s doubts have been more than disproven.
"I expected to only receive 25% of what Trust Energy was promising but the actual bill came within $10-$15 of their projections," he said.
Hunt’s has also realized some additional benefits including enhanced curb appeal, improved light quality in the store, at the pumps and in the garage bays, reduced heat output from the coolers, and decreased maintenance costs.
"The lights are great; the product in the coolers really stand out," said Hunt. "The exterior lighting is much brighter. It’s crazy because you wouldn’t think lighting would make such a big difference but you can really tell."
By working with Trust Energy Solutions, Hunt’s Mobil has reduced costs, improved the light quality and appearance of the business and reduced the negative impact on the environment.
After the retrofit, Hunt’s Mobil was proud to promote their new “green” initiative and keep the momentum going. “We definitely have plans for the future,” says Hunt, “we’re starting with small changes, like recycling, but I’d like to get involved with other local organizations to do more throughout the year.”
On Valentine’s Day most people think red, but for Hunt’s Mobil in Marlborough, MA it was all about going green! On Saturday, February 14th, the store hosted a green launch party to tell customers about their recent energy efficient upgrades.
With the help of Trust Energy Solutions, Hunt’s Mobil implemented several improvement measures including new LED lighting, refrigeration fans that generate 2/3 less heat, and energy-regulating controls in every cooler. Trust Energy Solutions developed customized solutions that allowed Hunt’s Mobil to reduce it’s environmental impact while saving money and improving the store’s appearance. These solutions led to a 35% reduction in energy use, which means the store will cut carbon emissions by over 160,500 pounds per year, which is equivalent to planting 3,677 trees.
These improvements reduced the store’s carbon footprint without breaking the bank. Owner Craig Hunt explains, "I’ve considered making these changes to my store for awhile, but I always thought it would be too expensive and the rebates (seemed) too good to be true. Trust Energy Solutions evaluated the entire property from top to bottom and found huge savings, which helped me qualify for a 50% National Grid rebate. This made it easier to begin making the store more efficient." However, Craig’s desire to implement these upgrades goes deeper than the energy savings, "I’ve lived in Marlborough my entire life and now my kids are growing up here. It’s important for me to set a good example and reinvest in the community to make it a better place for my children and their families."
Hunt’s Mobil was proud to share their new "green" initiative with their patrons and they plan to keep the momentum going. "We definitely have plans for the future," says Hunt, "we’re starting with small changes, like recycling, but I’d like to get involved with other local organizations to do more throughout the year."
PROJECT AT A GLANCE
Annual kWh Savings
Annual Dollar Savings
Energy Consumption Reduction
Carbon Footprint Reduction
I’m very pleased with the overall value that Trust Energy has provided both during and after the retrofit project. The store looks great and I immediately noticed the savings on my electric bill. I’ve continued working with Trust Energy to leverage the upgrade and increase sales by promoting the new ‘green’ changes to the store.
Craig Hunt, Owner