EP Editorial Staff | January 1, 2010
Employees at the 25 Five Rivers MetroParks facilities in the greater Dayton, OH area feel as though they’ve struck gold —black gold, that is.
The reason? They’ve been recycling used motor oil from service vehicles that maintain the system’s nearly 15,000 acres to generate heat for their offices and workshop.
According to Dave Spitler, assistant park manager, he was seeking a better way than wood-burning stoves to heat the operation’s buildings. “There was a big cost factor in man hours to have staff members cut and split wood for the stoves,” he says. The Clean Burn system has changed all that.
Before Clean Burn
Prior to installing the Clean Burn system, the Five Rivers Metroparks operation had hired contractors to haul away and dispose of used oil. This process not only posed considerable risk for spills and/or contamination of the environment, it also required significant amounts of fossil fuels for transporting the waste oil.
Used oil storage tanks now collect hundreds of gallons of recycled motor oil from the park’s 99 fleet vehicles and 98 small motorized vehicles (including Gators and lawn mowers), as well as community contributions. After being refined, the oil is pushed through a filter and pre-heated. It’s then injected into the Clean Burn furnace and burned at 1800 F. The high temperatures create low emissions (less than 1% allowable by EPA standards) and generate enough heat to warm the park’s 2400-sq.-ft. office and workshop facilities.
“I’ve sent oil recycle barrels to all MetroParks facilities to collect their used oil,” reports Spitler. “Each park saves money since they no longer have to pay anyone to properly dispose of the oil. We bring the full barrels to the central furnace area and replace them with empty barrels. This is a sensible solution that would be viable for other parks nationwide to adapt in order to save money and close the loop on recycling efforts.”
About Clean Burn
According to the manufacturer, there are 80,000 Clean Burn functional furnaces and boilers located across the globe. They burn millions of gallons of used oil each year on-site, at the point of generation.
Clean Burn is an ENERGY STAR® partner. The company holds numerous industry certifications and works with the U.S. government, the Environmental Protection Agency and various associations to help coordinate the establishment of standards and regulations related to heat recovery and recycling efforts involving used motor oils.
Clean Burn, Inc.