Guitar Center

At a Glance


Retail and Apparel

Project Type

Commercial Energy Efficiency




Westlake Village, CA


Linh Tran identified opportunities for Guitar Center to gain energy and financial savings by replacing HVAC units and retrofitting VFD’s across the company’s nationwide portfolio.


Guitar Center, the world’s largest music retailer with more than 270 stores across the U.S., enlisted EDF Climate Corps fellow Linh Tran to identify HVAC efficiency opportunities for stores in California. Having previously hosted Climate Corps fellows, Guitar Center set efficiency specifications for new HVAC units, but had not yet evaluated the business case for retrofitting or replacing existing HVAC units. Linh was tasked with devising a strategy that could be scaled throughout its facilities. 


To get a better understanding of the company’s current energy stance, Linh visited store locations, conducted interviews with facilities staff and HVAC contractors and refined an inventory of HVAC units. She determined that variable frequency drive (VFD) retrofits and HVAC unit replacements presented the best opportunity for saving both energy and money. Twenty-seven units were identified for VFD retrofits and 36 units for replacement in California. Additional retrofit candidates in NY (21 units) and FL (18 units) were also selected.

Potential Impact

At the end of her fellowship, Linh presented her analysis to Guitar Center and discussed how to apply the HVAC screening process and business analysis to Guitar Center’s remaining 200+ stores as well as its data center, distribution center and corporate campus locations.

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