Solutions Studies – Pros and Cons of Wind Turbine Board RepairJoel Coffman
As nonrenewable energy source supplies begin to dwindle, a steady increase in renewable energy use has begun to make up for a significant portion of today’s electricity generation. One source in particular, wind power, has seen a boost of over 25% in the past decade; in fact, with increased efficiency a modern wind turbine has the ability to harness 15 times the power of a comparable turbine in the 1990s. This growth and rapid development produced 74,000 megawatts of energy for the power grid in the US alone during 2015, enough to power 19 million homes annually.
With that being said, the importance of maintaining working wind turbines has never been more important. The average wind turbine has over 8,000 components, with arguably the most important being the circuit board. Knowing this means maintenance is an ongoing concern for wind farmers, here are some factors to consider when determining if you should repair or replace a failing circuit board in your turbine.
Cost – Cost will vary from board to board however, for a repair you can expect to save between 25-75% of the cost of a new board. The average repair will come in at $1000, whereas that same board brand new will cost between $2500. These saving can prove quite substantial depending on the number of units required.
Time – This may come as a surprise to some; however the time it takes to repair a board is not significantly longer than to buy a replacement board. A standard repair will have a turnaround of approximately 10 business days including transit. Depending on stock availability as well as shipping and handling for new units, the difference in turnaround time may not be all that substantially.
Warranty – Both a new or repaired boards should come with a warranty. Warranty on a newly installed turbine generally covers the first two to five years depending on the manufacturer, while a repaired board will likely have a one year warranty covering that particular part.
Limitations – While a new board will come as an off-the-shelf standard product, there is more flexibility for modifications when it comes to repairing a board. If you find that you want to customize your boards, improve efficiency or set specific parameters for your turbines, a board repairer will likely be able to make those modifications. However, they may be more limited in the types of boards they are able to repair over the selection available from an OEM is able to replace.
Considering your options is the first and most crucial step in ensuring the longevity and sustainability of your wind turbine farm.
For information on how SabeRex can help with your wind turbine board repair, check out our High Value Electronic Repair offering as well as our full-range of service capabilities.