The Goodyear tire plant in Union City, Tenn., is saving energy, which helps keep the plant’s operating costs down.
Goodyear tire plant in Union City, Tenn.

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At Goodyear's tire plant in Union City, Tenn., a steam boiler system assessment followed by a load management strategy saves the plant $875,000 a year.
Photo courtesy of Goodyear

A Save Energy Now assessment from the U.S. Department of Energy in 2006 identified opportunities to improve the efficiency of the plant’s steam system. Working with a DOE energy expert, the company’s employees, including Dennis Burden, a Goodyear energy manager, learned how to analyze the plant’s steam system and identify areas of natural gas savings to improve efficiency.

“The program helped bring together plant resources to implement findings or assist in completing projects already in progress,” Burden says. “Energy savings go directly to the bottom line, helping the plant compete in this global market.”

Goodyear implemented DOE recommendations that have helped the facility save $875,000 annually in energy costs. Employees optimized boiler operations and developed a load management strategy shortly after the assessment was completed. They also insulated the tire presses and plan to start recovering wasted heat in the near future. Additionally, results from the assessment were deemed applicable to several other Goodyear plants and are being shared with those facilities - 60 in total - at monthly energy conference calls.