Maximizing energy savings and system performance

Optimization EXPERTISE

Because refrigeration & HVAC systems already consume a significant amount of energy (more than half of a supermarket’s energy use), inefficient systems dramatically increase these operational costs even more. With years of field-based experience and numerous proprietary and proven processes, our highly-trained Energy Optimization (EO) team performs in-depth energy audits, surveys and retro-commissioning tailored to your specific system. These expert technicians specialize in analyzing, assessing and recommending cost-saving adjustments to ensure the most reliable and efficient performance of your entire refrigeration or HVAC system, including your Energy Management Systems (EMS).

Unlike most EO service providers, ҹլ has the expertise and resources to execute any recommended adjustments, and provide any required follow-up service, repairs or maintenance for the sustainability of your optimized system. This “one-stop-shop” capability ensures that all recommended cost-saving adjustments are executed accurately and seamlessly.

In addition to minimizing energy consumption, a properly set and balanced system reduces compressor and contactor cycling, thus reducing wear and tear and equipment downtime. The result is improved shopping or operating conditions and lower maintenance costs.

ҹլ offers the following Energy Optimization services:

Door Retrofits
EMS Retrofits
Energy Compliance
Energy Modeling
LED Lighting
Natural Refrigerants
Refrigerant Conversions
Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) Installations

Energy Optimization Services


Our energy experts will optimize your store/facility, and during the retro-commissioning process, look for additional energy reducing opportunities to further enhance reduction of your operating costs. Many times these recommendations can be implemented with minimal costs, and we will provide return analytics (ROI) to assist in determining if these recommendations meet your internal rate of return for implementation.

New Store Commissioning

All stores start with design. We have years of experience making sure your intended design transforms into a fully functional store. We have an unbiased commissioning agent review plans, work with your General Contractor, and install to ensure all best practices are used during and after the construction phase, including post start-up verification.

Energy Compliance

ҹլ can supply State, Local or Federal energy compliance calculations, such as Title 24 or local energy codes. Included is the complete compliance engineering for each applicable code or compliance requirement; stamped by a professional engineer, and current to match the local criteria specified.

Energy Modeling

ҹլ can provide energy modeling services to compare or predict energy usage for your supermarket refrigeration systems. Our Energy Modeling service is often useful as part of an optimization or remodel strategy, or reviewing current versus newer technology. ҹլ is also able to address reductions in consumption for utility incentive programs.

Other EO Services: Visit for our complete spectrum of EO services.

Retro-Fit Services

Door Retrofits

Are lower energy costs, improved food safety, product integrity, reduced shrinkage, and enhanced customer comfort important to your store? If so, you should consider a door retrofit program for your open multi-deck refrigerated cases and replacing your existing older case doors with new ones. Let ҹլ be your partner in helping you realize significant energy savings while enhancing the shopping experience for your customers with our Door Retrofit Program!

The ҹլ Door Retrofit Program involves enclosing your multi-deck cases with retrofit glass doors and when required, replacing older doors with current technology doors. As a full-service refrigeration & HVAC company focused on providing solutions that help your bottom-line, we perform our complete turnkey Door Retrofit Program on virtually any major case manufactures’ equipment and using most major door manufacturers’ products.

Key Benefits of a Door Retrofit

Refrigeration makes up more than half of the energy used in a grocery store, and open multi-deck fixtures account for a large portion of the total. Therefore, through door retrofits, you have the opportunity to significantly lower the operating costs of your store. In fact, it is possible to reduce energy use over 50 percent on those open, multi-deck cases.


Other Important Benefits include:

Product integrity

With doors in place, merchandise is no longer subjected to the drastic temperature variations of open fixtures and has been proven to last longer. Customer perception of product integrity of products behind a glass door is higher, and they help ensure that the FDA’s mandated 41°F is consistently maintained.

Improved shopper experience

The aisles in your store are warmer and much more comfortable; customers dwell longer in front of the merchandisers and purchase more of your products!

Products are “showcased”

LED lighting (available on most new doors) presents the product in an enhanced, brighter, cleaner and more visible way; improved sales follow.

Avoided maintenance expense

LED lighting lasts 5 times longer and is up to 50% more energy efficient than traditional fluorescent tubes.

Equipment capacity for future use

Case BTU loads are reduced up to 70%, thus freeing up refrigeration system capacity for future expansion, or to help marginal systems get by today.

Utilities are on board

Many utility companies recognize these retrofits as “prescriptive” measures. In other words, you do the work, they give you a rebate. Cost to install doors can be significantly offset by utility incentives, improving your ROI.

Perception of a store remodel

Many shoppers comment that the new doors create the impression that the store has been remodeled. This positive perception is good for sales!

Why Select ҹլ for your Door Retrofit Program?

ҹլ & HVAC provides a full-service offering including design, installation, service, and system optimization. Having a single point of contact for all phases of a door retrofit program ensures that all communication to the stakeholders comes from a single voice so that details needed for a successful project are handled properly and consistently. From the initial idea to the optimization of your upgraded system, having ҹլ on your team translates to success!

In addition, we are a nationwide company that can manage multi-site retrofit programs over large geographies. We also understand the importance of system uptime, and will coordinate with store management to perform the job with minimal impact to store operations.


The comprehensive ҹլ Door Retrofit Program includes the following steps:

Store survey

Determine exact case sizes, models, age, etc.

Provide photo documentation of all affected cases.

Identify and report any other problems that need to be addressed during the retrofit.

Document pertinent information relating to the existing compressor systems that will be affected by the modifications.


Analyze the existing compressor system with reduced loads, recommend modifications, and define the project scope of work.

Provide refrigeration floor plan with modifications, component changes, piping changes etc.

Recommend additional modifications that benefit energy improvement, maintenance cost avoidance and system control capability.


Dedicated crews versed in all necessary aspects of the project execute the door retrofit installation with a well-planned approach that is coordinated with store operations.

Installation includes the disposal of existing lighting, modification of piping, valves and components, electrical for new doors, and machine room modifications related to load reduction.


Adjustment and fine tuning of the system after door installation and required modifications.

Provide QA reporting, documenting the state of the system once complete.

Utility coordination with respect to ensuring the system is operating as required for utility incentives.

The ҹլ team has the training, experience, dedication and resources to ensure your organization receives the most technically advanced services available and realizes the greatest cost savings.

Contact us today for more information on our Door Retrofit Program.

EMS Retrofits

An EMS is the foundation of any retailer’s energy and maintenance reduction strategy. Today’s leading EMSs are designed to provide complete control of building and refrigeration systems including: compressor groups, condensers, walk-ins, HVAC units and lighting. In addition to monitoring and reducing energy usage across equipment types in the store, EMS also provide for a gradual, automated starting-up and stopping of energy usage at the beginning and end of a stores operating hours. These systems also control energy usage to avoid spikes in demand that are costly for both a retailer and the broader energy grid.

Once an EMS is installed the system needs to be optimized for maximum and sustained effectiveness. Our Energy Optimization team is expertly trained and experienced at installing EMS and optimizing new and existing systems. And because we are vendor neutral, we are trained and certified to optimize EMS systems from all leading manufacturers.

Variable Frequency Drives (VFDS)

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, motor-driven equipment accounts for 64 percent of the electricity consumed by U.S. industry. As businesses come under increasing pressure to reduce energy use and operating costs, the installation or retrofit of variable-speed drives (VFDs) are emerging as a popular solution. VFDs reduce electrical energy consumption by adjusting a motor’s speed to match the required load.

Many electric motors simply do not need to run at 100-percent capacity all of the time — such as those that power Condensers and Air Handler motors in grocery stores. By retrofitting these motors with VFDs, grocery stores and other facilities can control the equipment’s output to match the operation’s needs, saving energy when full output is not required, and with no impact to a system’s operation.

With advances in microelectronics and control technology over the past 10-15 years, VFDs have become an efficient and reliable means of controlling motor speed.


Facilities that install VFDs will:

Use less energy

Cut operating costs

Improve process precision

Eliminate the need for expensive and energy-wasting throttling mechanisms such as control valves and outlet dampers

Reduce wear and tear on motors and related components thus decreasing maintenance costs and prolonging equipment life

ҹլ’s Energy Optimization team is ready to work with you to install VFDs where appropriate and execute this simple but effective energy saving solution!

LED Lighting

Lighting in grocery stores represents about 13% of the electricity consumption, not including the impact on cooling loads. Lighting retrofits to LED lights can save 30 to 60 percent on lighting energy as well as 10 to 20 percent of cooling energy when compared to traditional, fluorescent lighting.

In addition to energy savings, today’s LED lighting plays an important role in creating an inviting shopping experience and increasing sales through better product illumination. Advances in LED lighting technology now offer grocery stores an option to fluorescent lighting that produces better lighting, especially in refrigerated display cases because LED lights perform very well in cold temperatures. In fact, research has shown that customers find LED lighting in freezers to be “brighter, more even, more appealing and more comfortable.” Packaging and food colors are brighter and more attractive to shippers. Additionally, LED Tube lights will only need to be replaced once every 10 years reducing maintenance and recycling costs.

Whether part of a new design, a remodel or a Door Retrofit program, the ҹլ team can assist you in optimizing your lighting with LED.

Natural Refrigerants

The refrigeration and HVAC world is changing. As the more “traditional” HCFC refrigerants continue to be aggressively phased out by EPA regulations and by a focus on reduced carbon footprints and a “greener” society, refrigeration & HVAC users have been forced to search for adequate replacements for their systems. One trend that is quickly growing in the United States is the use of natural refrigerants like CO2, propane, and ammonia. While these refrigerants have been used in industrial applications for years, and are prevalent throughout Europe and other countries, they are new to commercial applications in America.

In anticipation of this growing need and demand for natural refrigerants, ҹլ has proactively been involved in several high-profile natural refrigerant designs and installations with several of the world’s leading grocers.

Let our experienced team of engineers help you determine the best natural refrigerant options for your specific site and then work with you to design a system that provides the performance you need and the reduced carbon footprint that we all need! And of course, as with all of our work, each natural refrigerant system is designed to minimize your Total Cost of Ownership while providing optimal performance.

Refrigerant Conversions

Environmental concerns, most notably the destruction of the earth’s ozone layer and Global Climate Change present a serious challenge to owners of refrigeration and HVAC systems with HCFC and HFC refrigerants. As the HCFC production phase down completes its cycle in 2020, grocery retailers and facility managers now face restrictions on high GWP HFC refrigerants. Having an understanding of the rules and regulations that are in place, as well as a plan designed specifically for your facilities is our best advice in confronting these very important issues.

ҹլ is poised to provide a complete portfolio of products focused on the most viable refrigerant alternatives for your facility. We are ready to assist in the formulation of your conversion/refrigerant transformation strategy. Our refrigerant conversion experts are at the ready to assist in the design, planning and execution of your plan.

Some Key items to keep in mind regarding refrigerant regulations and actions that may affect future directions:

HCFC Phase out:

  • The Montreal Protocol ODS/HCFC phase out is on track, production stops January 1, 2020 (possibly sooner for some more obscure HCFC’s). Each year up to the end of 2019, a reduction in production allocations takes effect.
  • Common refrigerants affected by the HCFC phase out include R22, R408A, R409A, R402A and R401A. Supplies continue to be stressed, prices have been on a steep incline over the last couple of years.
  • Conversion replacement gas options have been a moving target, some are now not allowed due to their high GWP ratings (R404A, R507, R422D). Lower GWP alternatives such as R448A are leading the transition from HCFC’s and some HFC’s. This refrigerant has the lowest GWP rating of most replacements for R22 and R404A/R507, and functions similarly.
  • Conversion execution has become a familiar activity, as many stores and system types have been encountered, and processes have been refined.


Recent EPA Actions:

  • Authority within SNAP (Strategic New Alternatives Policy) has been broadened to include alternatives to HCFC’s. These include HFC/HFO substitute refrigerants. SNAP has the authority to “de-SNAP” certain refrigerants that were once considered viable alternatives, but now do not pass the “Low GWP” test.
  • EPA annual leak rate allowances have changed, and are effective 1-1-19. The following changes apply:
    • For Industrial Process Refrigeration, 30%, down from 35%
    • For Commercial Refrigeration, 20%, down from 35%
    • Comfort Cooling, 10% down from 15%
  • Periodic leak inspections are now the rule, unless continuously monitored by an automatic leak detection system.
  • Leak repair verification tests are now the rule, required after a system has returned to normal operating conditions after the leak is repaired. Documentation is required for this event.
  • Some commonly used refrigerants, such as R404A, R407A and R507 have been deemed un-acceptable for use in new installations for retail food refrigeration effective 2021. Similar refrigerant restrictions for cold storage refrigeration have also been included, taking effect in 2023.
  • Use of common refrigerants such as R404A and R507 is prohibited for remodel or retrofit applications.


Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol:

  • Provides for a phasedown process for HFC refrigerants as the use and proliferation of these substitutes are directly tied to the ODS phaseout, and have GWP characteristics many times higher than CO2.
  • The amendment establishes a baseline, and pre-determined steps for reduction in production allocations.
  • It is not a phase-out, but a mechanism to reduce production levels and the associated threat to the environment over time. The first reduction in production allocation occurs in 2024, with a baseline established for 2020-2022 average HFC consumption.


Emergence of Natural Refrigerants as an Alternative Solution

Over the last 10 years, the U.S. Commercial refrigeration industry has advanced the use of natural refrigerants for grocery retailers and other related installations. As the technology has evolved, retailers have enjoyed the benefits of having low or no GWP refrigerants in their systems, and have gathered significant data that points to these as being viable alternatives for new installations, and soon, retrofits. The natural refrigerants most widely used include Ammonia, CO2 and Propane. Each has its own unique design requirements. ҹլ has been involved with the design, installation and maintenance of natural refrigerant systems for many years, and can provide an objective view of how these options may fit into your strategy.

The ҹլ Conversion Strategy can be broken down into 4 main elements: Program Planning and Organization; Survey and Engineering; Execution; Commissioning.   Each element is described below in additional detail. It would be our intent to allow our customers to pick and choose the services that best fit their needs.

WHY ҹլ?

When choosing a partner to address your refrigerant transformation needs, you have options. If your goals include

the development of a strategy that minimizes risk, keeps in step with the maze of regulations that one must deciphur, ensures that your conversions are being executed in an efficient, consistent and professional manner, and that leave you with an efficient engineered and commissioned facility, ҹլ is your only real option!

Process Step Key Components Customer Benefit/Value
Conversion Program Planning & Organization
  • Planning, Budgeting
  • Communication
  • Prioritizing
  • Refrigerant banking goals, options
  • An overall conversion plan that considers risk mitigation, scope timing, cost, gas banking options, great tool for budgeting
  • A well thought-out plan
Survey & Engineering
  • Detailed engineering review to define scope of work for each conversion
  • Survey of each location for enabling accurate engineering
  • Recommendations for modifications/improvements for each store
  • Assurance that each conversion is being reviewed by professional engineers to ensure that the best refrigerant choice considering specific equipment and corporate GWP objectives – Opportunities for optimizing system performance post-conversions
Refrigerant Change-Out
  • Execution of change-outs per the detailed conversion plan and engineering review; coordinated with the local store operations to minimize store disruptions
  • Change-outs executed by the largest expert service provider in the industry with the size, expertise and resources to work around your schedule to minimize store disruptions and ensure the highest quality conversions; consistency
System Commissioning
  • Optimization of the entire system, including the EMS, post conversion
  • Ensures that each newly converted system is optimized for energy usage and performance


Managing humidity levels has long been a challenge for grocery stores and other businesses where customer comfort or product integrity depends on proper internal climate. This is especially true in high-humidity climates. The common practice of adjusting a building’s air temperature to try to maintain an acceptable humidity level dramatically increases energy use and costs, and can negatively affect customer and employee comfort. Additionally, too much humidity can cause condensation on the refrigerator coils, further increasing energy usage. In a grocery retail setting, frost and ice can form on case doors and the product itself, leading to product deterioration and an undesirable appearance.

We are trained on all major dehumidification technologies and with all major dehumidification equipment manufacturers. Our team of energy optimization specialists is trained to optimize and sustain your dehumidification systems to make sure they are operating at optimal efficiency and performance levels, so that you achieve the comfort levels and energy savings you expect. Let us survey your facility and help develop solutions that manage your humidity challenges.


Unfortunately, there are times when a refrigeration or HVAC system needs more than simple maintenance. We all know the signs: a spike in energy use, an increase in refrigerant use or evidence of a leak, more frequent refrigeration failures and/or loss of refrigerated product, or an increase in maintenance costs. If you have any of these issues, your Refrigeration System has a problem. ҹլ can help.

At ҹլ, we have the knowledge, skills, processes and equipment to diagnose problems and recommend solutions for problem/high-cost systems. Following our High-Cost Store process, our specialists evaluate all of your systems to identify the specific root causes of any problems and recommend solutions.

Not only can we fix a problem system, but because we offer service solutions that cover all stages of refrigeration & HVAC system life-cycles, we can also become your partner in maintaining performance so problems do not return. With our training and experience with all types of refrigeration systems from a wide range of manufacturers, you can rest assured that we will have a solution for your specific problems.

We want to partner with you to optimize and sustain your stores’ performance over time so that there are no more Problem/High-Cost Systems.