Stack testing is a necessary and crucial aspect for any factory or plant that has to consider air emissions control from emission points and stacks at their facility. EPA regulations require compliance with established air quality measurements. These standards are subject to change and, for this reason and others, it’s helpful to contract with a specialized stack testing company to ensure compliance.
Estimating the stack testing pricing structure can be a challenge when compiling a budget for this part of the business. The team at Environmental Source Samplers (ESS) has put together a list of four typical pricing considerations to help you understand how the pricing structure is established. Some of these costs are fixed and some are under your control. For those variable costs, we’ve also made some recommendations on how you can decrease stack testing expenses.
Mobilization – This refers to getting the stack testing team to your facility. Variable costs include distance travelled and how many separate mobilizations are required, i.e. will there be an engineering test before the compliance test? Occasionally, there needs to be 2 mobilizations in order to give time after the engineering test to make necessary adjustments before doing compliance test.
Suggestions for reducing costs on mobilizations include preventing the need for multiple mobilizations by analyzing the need for separate mobilizations for preliminary engineering testing, using careful preparations to prevent the need for a retest, and potential cost sharing by bundling with nearby facilities. Another cost reduction would be to test multiple units at once.
Equipment – This refers to the tools needed to conduct testing. These are fixed costs that include the highly specialized measurement tools and analyzers generally required by EPA methods in order to demonstrate compliance
Labor Hours – This refers to the people and time needed to conduct testing. The fixed costs associated with labor are that a certain number of people are usually necessary to meet needs and the testing times and durations are set by EPA as part of methods.
The variable costs associated with labor involve the engineering testing. You can compare run per run pricing versus day of testing pricing because sometimes it’s cheaper for a day of testing – as many runs as can fit in an 8 hour day – than to pay per run.
Lab analysis of results – This refers to verifying the data gathered in the field. There are both fixed and variable costs associated with the reporting. Fixed costs are the analysis methods pre-determined by the EPA. Variable costs include the turnaround time on results and varies depending on the client needs and demands. A quicker turnaround would be much more expensive. Careful preparation and planning are key to reducing these costs. Get the stack testing scheduled early enough to allow for normal wait time which is generally 3-4 weeks to get results back.
Stack testing needs to be a part of any emissions-producing facility and should be considered a fixed part of the budget. But we hope that in better understanding the stack testing pricing structure, you’ll be better able to plan, budget, and reduce costs associated with this service.
Please contact the experts at ESS today for more information about our stack testing, analysis, and reporting services:
Phone: (910) 799-1055