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Want to boost energy efficiency and reduce costs for your greenhouse? Try this

One of the most expensive parts of running a greenhouse operation – whether for personal or commercial production -- is the energy costs. But what are the realistic options for growers that want to make every penny count? Whether in oppressively hot or brutally cold conditions, there are several options to consider for cutting down on energy expenses. Let’s take a look at one of our preferred choices.

Certain savings with curtains

Energy curtains are one of the most cost effective options for growers looking to save on energy. In colder climates, 75% of your heating bill during the winter comes at night when there is no solar gain. The best way to think about energy curtains is to consider them an extra layer of protection for your harvest that will help optimize the conditions within your greenhouse.
There are several realistic options to consider outside of energy curtains that will help reduce your energy costs; including venting systems, installing an environmental controller, using IR-polyethylene film, and installing a heating system. These are all viable options, and when bundled together with curtains, will create savings that will provide returns year after year.

Making the case for energy curtains

According to a study by Michigan State University, installing energy curtains can save growers over a quarter of their annual energy bills. And these savings don’t happen a decade down the road either. This investment will often pay for itself within as little as two growing seasons.
A report from the National Greenhouse Manufacturers Association echoed this fact and found that “growers who have installed curtain systems commonly report annual savings of 30% or more.” In a market of ever-fluctuating energy costs, those savings add up quickly and can be redistributed to expansion or improvement of your entire operation.
We’d be remiss not to mention that the benefits of curtains go beyond cost considerations. They also benefit the environment; they do this by limiting the amount of water your shaded plants require in the summer or resources you need to heat your greenhouse in the winter.

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