Foodies's Markets, a medium sized, family-owned, urban grocery chain, commissioned Airius to design a destratification solution to improve comfort levels in 2 of their stores, where they were receiving complaints that the stores were too cold.
The results exceeded all expectations. Complaints ceased immediately and both stores heating requirement needed to be reduced far lower than predicted, reflecting significant monetary savings.
Foodie’s first installed 8 Model 15 Airius fans in its 745m² store in South Boston. Managers were so pleased with how the destratification fans warmed up the store for both employees and customers that they installed another system of 7 Model 15 fans at their store in Duxbury.
“Before the Airius fans were installed at the Boston store, employees, especially checkout clerks near the store entrance, complained about being cold,” said Michael Stameris, Facilities & Operations Manager for Foodie’s.
“After the fans were installed on each side of the checkout lane and throughout the store, clerks told managers they now were too warm!” Stameris explained. “I lowered the temperature in the store. But on the next day, they said they were still hot, so I lowered the temperature a second time.”
Another factor that led Foodie’s to the Airius system was the fan’s low use of electricity and easy plug-and-play installation. “These fans really use a small amount of current,” Stameris said.
Store managers, using a thermal scanner, could easily see the temperature difference between the hotter ceiling area and the store’s cooler floor. “With the recent cold winters some customers also complain about being chilly,” Stameris said.
With ceilings of about 4 metres in South Boston and a range from 3.5 to 5 metres at the Duxbury location, the Airius Model 15 has worked well at circulating hotter air to the floor.
Foodie’s also installed fans above its open case frozen food aisles, where managers believed that cold air was spilling out.
“We were pleased to find that the column of air is so pinpoint to the floor that we could install the fans less than a metre off the centre of the open cases,” Stameris said. “It’s very precise.”
At Foodie’s Duxbury store, one manager’s office is located on an elevated mezzanine area. “That office area was often too warm, while employees on the floor below the mezzanine were too cold”, Stameris said.
Three fans were installed along the ceiling in the elevated area, to draw the excess heat from the high level office area and recirculate it down to the floor below to solve the problem.
“Groceries, with frozen food aisles, open refrigerated cases and entrances frequently opening and closing for shoppers, make it tough for managers to keep thermostats at their set points and are an anomaly when it comes to keeping temperatures balanced. But the Airius system has helped us do just that, saving a lot of money” Stameris said.
“I’m a believer in the Airius system,” he adds, “I’ve seen first-hand how it has helped.”