Wing Service Center expands to better serve rural membership
Rural Wing and the surrounding areas may be a quiet part of the Capital Electric Cooperative service area, but it’s an important one as far as membership and planning. It has the most miles of line per-consumer of anywhere in the cooperative system. Capital Electric maintains a service center in Wing, where two linemen patrol and update lines and poles, and fix outages. No other utility has a constant presence in the area.
The small outpost, which was originally built on the west side of McClusky and relocated to its current site in Wing, is more than 50 years old. As trucks and equipment have improved in technology, they’ve also gotten bigger. The outpost cannot store a Digger Derrick truck, which is needed to set transformers and change out poles. When poles need to be set in rural Burleigh and Sheridan Counties, linemen who work out of Capital Electric headquarters have to drive a truck from Bismarck to the site, which takes time and money.
After much discussion and consideration, the Capital Electric board of directors approved the construction of an additional work and storage space adjacent to the current outpost in Wing. This summer, work was completed on the 48’x60’ building, which has two stalls large enough to accommodate a Digger Derrick, as well as ample space for equipment and materials.
Doug Mork, member services director for Capital Electric, says the new building was constructed with energy efficiency in mind. It is fully insulated, it features a lot of natural light and energy-efficient lighting, and it utilizes in-floor heat. Electric boilers are highly efficient radiant-heat units known for providing a comfortable, even heat. Here’s how they work: By running warm water through plastic pipes in the floor, you create radiant heat transfer that heats your body and objects in the room; not just the air around you. When the boiler reaches its set point and the floor is warm, a sensor shuts down the boiler.
Installing in-floor heat has many benefits:
• Electric heat is a stable and affordable source of energy, in comparison to the fluctuating prices of natural gas and propane.
• Dust, air contaminants, bacteria and low humidity levels — all problems associated with forcedair heating — are nonexistent in a home or shop with a radiant heating system. When a boiler is used in conjunction with a secondary heating source, such as natural gas or propane, Capital Electric gives members a discounted load-controlled rate.
“In a building like this for the time we use it, it’s an absolute no-brainer. You don’t need hanging fans to push the air down. You simply have the heat where you want it,” Mork says.
He advises members who are building a garage or shop to consider installing an electric boiler for convenience and comfort.
“An in-floor heating system is totally desirable. It’s one of the easiest to install, easiest to maintain, and most efficient because you have even heat throughout,” he says.
For more information about in-floor heat, or for information on any of Capital Electric Cooperative’s electric heat products or services, call Doug or Josh in the member services department at 701-223-1513, or visit www.capitalelec.com and click on Energy Efficiency and Products.