As a manufacturer of durable windows and doors, with a presence in several countries around the world, Deceuninck has always endeavored to follow sustainable business practices in all areas of its operations. This has now become more important than ever, and they have started taking steps to extend their green ethos to their company fleet. With a view to switching from a diesel to an electric fleet, the company has installed dozens of charging stations at their head office in Roeselare in West Flanders and their recycling plant in Diksmuide. After testing chargers from several manufacturers, they chose Smappee’s solution and contracted ExtraVolt to install them.
Deceuninck based their sustainability goals on credible, clear pathways to reduce carbon emissions as set out by the Science Based Targets initiative. “Our goal is to cut our CO2 emissions with 60% by 2030 compared with our 2021 output,” says Celine De Waele, Deceuninck Group’s Sustainability Manager. “We therefore are investing in energy-efficient processes and equipment, phasing out heating oil and switching to renewable energy.
To do this, we are busy checking the roofs of all our buildings around the world to see whether they will be able to carry more solar panels, and how many. We have already installed solar panels on a small section of our roof in Roeselare and they provide 4% of our head office’s electricity needs. It may sound like very little, but our extrusion processes use a lot of energy. Come summer, we will have added many more solar panels at our sites in West Flanders to be able to generate 3,1 mWp (Megawatt peak). This will provide 15% of the power we need locally.”
The group’s drive towards renewable energy is evident in their recent commitment to phase out all diesel vehicles in the company fleet. “About 120 of our 600 employees in Roeselare have company vehicles,” explains Ilian Lisabeth, a project engineer at Deceuninck. “From September 2023 they will be given a choice between hybrid or a fully electric vehicle only, which will require a considerably larger charging infrastructure than we previously had.”
Deceuninck therefore issued a tender at the end of 2022 inviting applications from installers. ExtraVolt was among the applicants. “After evaluating all submissions, we chose ExtraVolt,” says Ilian. “Their efficiency, quick turnaround and clear communication struck us as best suited to a dynamic business site such as ours.
What’s more, they work exclusively with Smappee’s charging infrastructure and that was one of our conditions. Before issuing the tender, we had done a few tests with charging stations from different brands and Smappee stood out as the clear winner.”
ExtraVolt lived up to their promise. “We are used to moving quickly and could start the installation almost immediately,” explains Daan Decleer, ExtraVolt’s project leader. “Deceuninck already added two intermediate points to the existing high-voltage cabin, making it easy for us to install two connections that delivered the right power to the right place. We added 40 charging points – 20 charging stations with 2 chargers each – to parking lot A and 24 charging points to parking lot B. We added eight more at the recycling plant in Diksmuide.”
“The whole installation went very smoothly, thanks in a large part to Deceuninck that was very accommodating,” Daan continued. “Because they had acted quickly and made all the necessary preparations, we could stick to the project timelines and meet the deadline. Our work consisted of laying the cables to the Smappee charging stations and installing the charging stations themselves. The underground cable network was installed in such a way that it will be easy to expand the infrastructure in future.”
“Smappee’s charging stations are not just beautiful, they also work perfectly. A great advantage is the possibility to spread the available power evenly over the number of vehicles that are charging.”Ilian Lisabeth, project engineer at Deceuninck
ExtraVolt has been working exclusively with Smappee products for some time. “We are very happy with them in all regards,” Daan says. “For one, they use smart technology, which makes the products really excellent. The business, which is based in Harelbeke, also provides solid after-sales service. If we have a glitch, it’s easy and quick to contact the right person to get help. What’s more, the software is extremely user-friendly and provides a detailed overview of all charging stations installed in one central dashboard. It allows us to constantly keep track of each individual charging station we have installed.
The management system is accurate and easy to use too. A client can always see precisely how much power they are using and how much solar power is being generated. The two work in perfect harmony.”
Ilian agrees. “Smappee’s charging stations are not just beautiful, they also work perfectly. A great advantage is the possibility to spread the available power evenly over the number of vehicles that are charging. It’s easy to monitor our energy production and use, and to control it. Because everything is done on one platform and it allows you to even change settings remotely. If, for instance, there is a problem with a charging station in Diksmuide, we can adjust it from our office in Roeselare.”
For the foreseeable future, Deceuninck will allow only their employees to use the charging stations. At a later stage they may open it up to clients and visitors too. “Even then, the charging stations won’t be available to the general public,” says Celine. “Our location doesn’t allow for it and our parking area is relatively small.
We therefore reserve it first and foremost for those who need to be here. In the long term, we may possibly install extra AC charging stations and allow certain visitors to use them.
“We also decided not to install any fast chargers because our employees normally are here for the whole day. Looking to the future we are contemplating covering our parking area to create a carport, which will allow us to install solar panels that could generate power to charge the cars.”
Industry Window and door manufacturer
Deceuninck prides itself on producing innovative windows and doors. The group has offices in several countries and manufactures environmentally friendly products that make homes and commercial buildings more comfortable by improving their isolation, acoustics, air quality and safety. Their energy-efficient systems lend a stylish finishing touch to any building.
The company is committed to sustainability and has begun investing heavily in solar panels to increase their renewable energy production and usage. To make Deceuninck’s company fleet more environmentally friendly, it issued a public tender at the end of 2022 to expand its charging infrastructure significantly.
Deceuninck undertook an extensive test of different manufacturers’ charging stations before choosing Smappee as the best solution. They contracted ExtraVolt, a company based in Beernem that works only with Smappee products, to install 64 charging stations at their head office in Roeselare and eight at their recycling plant in Diksmuide. ExtraVolt also laid the cables from the high-voltage cabin to the charging stations. Deceuninck chose AC charging stations to be used exclusively by their employees.
- Intensive use of all charging stations
- Evenly distributed power supply for all vehicles
- Easy management of the integrated infrastructure
- Smart solution for electrifying the company fleet
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