Water is a precious commodity, and reducing water use is a goal every business should set.
A Sheffield, England-based company called Xeros has developed an innovative laundry system that makes it easy for companies to reduce water use by up to 80 percent. The system uses polymer bead technology that attracts dirt and absorbs it into the beads, which can then be reused for hundreds more washes before being recycled. Xeros launched its laundry system at the International Motel and Restaurant Show in November 2013, and received the Editor’s Choice Award for Best New Product for Hotel Operations.
The British company has since expanded in North America. Xeros recently announced that its plans to roll-out out the system to the hospitality industry is on track, and most of its laundry systems have been sold to the top five hotel groups in North America. Since hotels in the U.S. use about 2.3 billion gallons of water a month to wash linens, that is a good fit. A life cycle assessment (LCA) carried out by Sustain Ltd found that the Xeros system also reduces carbon footprint by 44 percent. The life cycle savings in carbon footprint and water use are equal to the emissions produced by watching a 32-inch LED TV for 32,000 hours or 10 years’ worth of direct water use by an average U.K. household.
The laundry system contains a special storage system for the beads to contain them between wash cycles, called wet sump housing, and allows the beads to be easily carried up into the drum during a wash. The sump also allows the beads to be cleaned after heavy use, which is necessary for commercial laundries that wash large amounts every day, such as a hotel. Each load saves energy, in addition to water, plus it reduces the need for detergent. That makes the system money saving. The system might also save time since Xeros claims it reduces the need for separating colors because the beads absorb stray dyes in the wash.
Xeros provides support for customers through its SbeadyCare program, which it describes as an “all-in-one support service providing customers with everything that they need to get the most out of the Xeros machine.” The company also has an Affirmation Program for customers that measures the utility consumption and other related costs of currently used washing machines and compares it to their system.
The system is a great one to be used by businesses in drought stricken California, where every part of the state is in drought conditions. The state is facing the worst drought in its recorded history. Some cities are asking businesses to reduce water use by 35 percent. The Capital Athletic Club in Sacramento, California, a fitness facility, reduced the water consumption of its laundry operations by using the Xeros machine by almost 50 percent.
Image credit: Xeros