Irvine Valley College

Irvine Valley College’s out-of-date, stand-alone standard office clocks were unreliable. The California community college installed a Primex wireless time synchronization system that quickly resolved those issues.

The Problem

The clocks at Irvine Valley College, a part of the South Orange County (CA) Community College District that serves more than 15,000 students, had synchronization issues and needed frequent adjustments. With 17 buildings and 12 different school divisions spread out across 80 acres, it was becoming increasingly difficult for the two electricians on staff to keep up with the maintenance requirements

John Edwards, Irvine Valley College’s Director of Maintenance, estimated that the total annual cost of maintenance – comprising time change resets, annual battery changes, and other maintenance work orders – added up to more than $21,000 over five years.

The school had previously tried other clock systems, but was looking for a more advanced time synchronization system that would minimize or eliminate the cost of replacing movements, a frequent and costly problem with the other systems. Eventually the college installed standard office clocks with AA batteries. “With the equipment and labor costs for battery replacements, as well as the man-hours needed to adjust the clocks throughout the year, we were left with a system that fell woefully short of the mark,” said Mike Boquet, Lead Electrician at Irvine Valley College. “The standard office clocks were inexpensive to purchase, but proved to be very costly to maintain.”

The Solution

Edwards asked Boquet to solicit bids for a clock system that would better serve the college’s needs. Primex Wireless was already being used on campus for other facility monitoring requirements, and its clock system was judged by Boquet to not only be the most reliable option, but to also provide the quickest return on investment. The Primex Wireless solution was also the most cost-effective – 40% lower than comparable systems quoted.

The perfectly synchronized Primex Wireless clocks have replaced the standard office clocks in all 17 buildings across campus. With a Life Sciences building currently under construction, a Fine Arts complex on the radar to be built, and a sports stadium and several other buildings yet to be constructed, Primex Wireless clocks will be the campus standard at all of the new facilities.

Taking into account the total maintenance costs over the life of the system and the cost of installation, Edwards estimates that the system will pay for itself within five or six years, and save $36,100 over its expected lifespan.

“The move to Primex Wireless is not only saving us money by eliminating maintenance, but is also better serving our students and staff,” said Boquet. “The testing centers, classrooms, boardrooms, conference rooms, foyers, building entrances, labs and lecture halls are all on exactly the same time. I can’t emphasize enough how important that is to our education system.”


  • All of Irvine Valley College’s buildings are synchronized to the same time, allowing students and faculty to better organize their time
  • The college was able to eliminate high clock maintenance costs and free up its electricians to focus on other facility maintenance requirements, with estimated cost savings of more than $36,000 over the expected life of the system
  • Primex Wireless has eliminated time-wasting activities like manually changing clocks to and from Daylight Saving Time
  • “The Primex Wireless clocks are expected to last for many, many years, ensuring their cost-effectiveness, reliability and return on investment, ” according to Mike Boquet, the college’s lead electrician. “We could not be more pleased with this new clock system!”
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