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Office of Energy Efficiency Links


Business: Industrial


Electric Motors

How Much Will I Save?

The purchase price represents only 3 percent of the lifetime cost for most motors; the remaining 97 percent goes toward the purchase of electricity to operate them. As a result, even a 1 or 2 percent improvement in efficiency can provide substantial savings. Unfortunately, price is the primary consideration with most motor purchases. In fact,
a recent study by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)
found that only 7 percent of motor purchases included energy efficiency in their specifications.

Now Available! CanMOST &##8211; the Canadian Motor Selection Tool
ELECTRIC MOTORS Energy Efficiency Reference Guide

The price of a NEMA Premium™ motor may be 10 to 15 percent more than that of a standard model, depending on motor size, type, availability and manufacturer. However,
the simple payback period is generally two years or less for a typical industrial application of 6000 annual operating hours. The table below compares the total life-cycle costs
of a 75-hp motor with those of a NEMA Premium™ motor in a typical industrial application.

Table B

Comparison of Motor Lifetime Costs for a Typical 75-hp Motor Running 6000 Hours per Year

  Baseline Motor NEMA Premium™ Motor
Capital Cost $4,200 $4,700
Annual cost of electricity* $31,948 $31,513
Life-cycle costs** $200,506 $198,331
Net savings $2,175

* Assuming an average cost of $0.08/kWh and a demand charge of $7/kW month.
** Present worth, assuming a useful life of 10 years and a discount rate of 10 percent

CanMOST – the Canadian Motor Selection Tool – is a software program coupled with an extensive database of 43 000 North American and European motors that can help you analyse how much you can save by purchasing high-efficiency motors.

Next: Purchasing Tips