When the kitchen committee started gathering data about problems within the kitchen, one discovery was that the dish sanitizer** was not working properly. The cause was not the sanitizer itself, but that the water coming into the sanitizer was not consistently hot enough. Dish sanitizers are different from dishwashers—they run a very short (from 90 seconds to 3 minutes) and very hot wash and rinse cycle. The water coming into a sanitizer needs to be at least 110°F. The sanitizer has an on-board temperature booster that increases the water temperature by up to 70°F so the final rinse temperature is at a sanitizing temperature of 175-180°F. If the water coming in is not 110°F the sanitizer will not run. The water heater serving our sanitizer was the same one serving the entire clubhouse. Its controls cannot be set above 120°F for safety in showers and sinks. The sanitizer worked fine for the first load of dishes or glasses, but for the second, third, and more loads, the incoming water temperature dropped below 110°F. Most clubhouse functions where food and/or drink is served result in multiple loads running through the sanitizer. Tankless hot water systems (also known as heat-on-demand) have been in use in Europe and other parts of the world for decades. They are very energy efficient in that they only use energy when there is demand for hot water, rather than keeping a tank full of water hot all the time. When there is demand, the tankless system supplies an endless stream of consistently hot water. The technology has advanced in recent years, and the units have improved in efficiency, style and price. Many homeowners in the U.S. are now replacing their old tank-style hot water heaters with a tankless version, or are adding one for special purposes, like filling a large spa tub. The Energy Trust of Oregon recognizes the energy savings of tankless systems, and has authorized an energy rebate on our new system. When the kitchen renovation is complete, you will see a stainless steel “box,” on the upper wall of the kitchen, near the sink. The heater itself is just the upper 60% of the box (about the size of a carry-on suitcase), with the lower 40% a cover for the not-so-attractive natural gas and water pipes that supply it. See the April issue of Claremont News for another update on the kitchen project.   **Most people would call this a dishwasher, and it does “wash” the dishes, but not like your home dishwasher. Dish sanitizers are used in restaurants, bars and other commercial kitchens to quickly run multiple loads of dishes or glassware. Ever get a warm salad plate in a restaurant? Or a warm wine glass? Scraping dishes thoroughly and running them through a short sanitizing cycle at very high temperatures is the best way to handle dishes and glassware for a crowd. In restaurants that are turning tables quickly, the use of sanitizers can result in dishes being back on another table within just a few minutes, still warm from the very high temperature sanitizing cycle.   Kitchen renovation committee; Julie Sackett, Craig Hindley, Sharon Joyce, Dianne Malloy, Sarah O’Connell
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