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What Are the Benefits of a Variable Frequency Drive for a Business?


You may have heard about variable frequency drives (VFDs) before, but not understood what they do or what benefits they may offer to your business.

We hope to change this with some helpful information. VFDs are becoming more and more common in commercial and industrial use because of their benefits, which include higher energy efficiency, fewer breakdowns, longer system life, and lower environmental impact.

But let’s start at the beginning and answer your first question…

What Is a Variable Frequency Drive?

The name variable frequency drive is a vague one, but may give you an idea of what to expect. If you’re familiar with the inverter motors or variable speed motors used in high-efficiency air conditioners, you’re already on the right track.

The technical description of a VFD is that it’s an electronic device that controls the speed of an alternating current (AC) motor by adjusting the frequency of the power supplied to the motor. 

The simpler version: a VFD can ramp the speed of a motor up and down based on the motor’s changing needs or application. The motor will not always run at 100% capacity, but will instead reduce its speed—and how much energy it consumes—when it can. And that means using less power overall, no matter the application.

The Commercial Benefits of Using VFD

Now let’s breakdown the concrete benefits:

  • Energy savings: This is the basic and most significant advantage of integrating a VFD into your business. How much can you save? It varies based on use, but the US Department of Energy estimates VFDs can lower energy costs by up to 50%.
  • Longer motor life: A motor that always works at peak capacity when it’s running will wear down much quicker than a motor that frequently works at a lower capacity. You can expect a VFD to help motors last longer and save you money on repairs as well as having to replace the motor early.
  • Improved process efficiency: VFDs will improve a commercial facility’s process control. You can precisely control the AC motor speed to match the application demands, which will optimize the process to improve efficiency, productivity, and quality. 
  • Quieter: You’ll enjoy a more serene (or as serene as your facility can get) work environment when the motors are often running at lower speeds—which will be most of the time thanks to the integration of a VFD.
  • Better for the environment: Any tool that increases energy efficiency and lowers energy consumption is beneficial to the environment. Using a VFD can lower your business’ carbon footprint and help you meet environmental regulations and standards.

We offer commercial and industrial electric service in Buffalo, NY, service that includes working with variable frequency drives. We can help you discover the difference using a VFD will have for your business. We have more than two decades of experience in commercial electrical systems, and we’ve always stayed current with the best in new technologies.

Scherer Electric Is Western New York’s Favorite Electrician! Contact us today to handle all your commercial electrical needs. 

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