Mainstreet Menu Systems Goes ‘Green’
BROOKFIELD, Wis. (November 30, 2005) – By the end of this year, Mainstreet Menu Systems, a brand of The Howard Company, Inc., will begin using electronic ballasts and T-8 fluorescent lamps in their Gold Series of menu boards to make them more environmentally friendly and energy efficient.
“Re-engineering our back-lit menu system product line to be more energy efficient has been in the works for quite a while. Considering the recent increases in gasoline and overall energy costs, the timing is right to make the change and implement the new technology,” commented Dawn Pankow, marketing manager for The Howard Company, Inc.
The new technology will help save money, time, and energy. A few of the benefits include:
- Lower Energy Bills: Electrical energy consumption is reduced by almost 50%. A typical seven-box menu system's annual electrical cost based on current Midwest rates is reduced by over $225 annually.
- Fewer Burned-Out Lamps: The newer, more efficient T-8 fluorescent lamps are rated to last nearly 3 times as long as the current T-12 lamps.
- No Starters Required: The electronic ballast does not require the use of starters which have a high failure rate.
- Lower Shipping Costs: The new components weigh less, which will reduce shipping and handling costs.
- Easier Disposal of Lamps: The new lamps are "low-mercury" in full compliance with the U.S. Government EPA's TCLP regulations for environmental compliant disposal. West Coast customers benefit because the Mainstreet Gold lightboxes are in compliance with California Energy Efficiency Standards (Title 24, Part 6).
- Improved Color Rendering Index: The T-8 fluorescent lamps have an improved Color Rendering Index (CRI). Back-lit food pictures are more appealing because the colors are richer and brighter.
- Longer Lasting Ballast: The new electronic ballast has been commercially tested and has a proven reliability record. It uses solid-state components and is significantly more robust than the current electromagnetic/core & coil ballast. Plus it is designed to adapt to a wider range of voltage fluctuations. Voltage fluctuations are the cause of shorter lamp life and ballast failure.
- Easier Installation: Because the new ballasts require less energy, almost twice as many lightboxes may be linked together with a single master lightbox and one line cord. The amp draw for a new style 18” x 27” size lightbox will be .57 amps compared to 1.02 amps for an old style lightbox.
Mainstreet Menu Systems’ product line includes outdoor drive-thru and indoor back-lit and magnetic menu systems, and food merchandising products for the restaurant and hospitality industry.
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