Clearing the Air: Maximizing HVAC Efficiency
Thermal comfort has a profound impact on the way a person experiences the environment around them. The level of comfort that a building will provide for its occupants is one of the most important considerations in HVAC design. If an HVAC system is not selected properly, the system will not be balanced and can negatively affect the productivity, mood, and performance of the building users.
HVAC systems are selected based on 5 main factors:
For buildings such as retail, restaurants, and offices, typical HVAC selection includes Packaged Rooftop Units (RTUs) for single-story and Split Systems for multi-story. RTUs and Split Systems are suitable and affordable options that can be installed to accommodate building capacity temperatures as needed.
Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) systems are a more expensive option but have an added element of control. VRFs have zoning requirements and diverse occupancy types. This means users are able to adjust temperature in different rooms of the building to suit their needs.
In larger buildings such as warehouses with higher cooling needs, Evaporative Cooling is a favorable option since it is cheaper to run and install. It's common to install high volume, low velocity fans in warehouses to assist the system in keeping the space cooled.
When an HVAC system is reaching the end of its life expectancy, there are telltale signs that will indicate the system may be in need of an upgrade. Some signs you might notice are:
Space temperature is not reaching your set point for a long period of time.
Your system is running for longer than it normally would.
There is an increase in the amount of noise coming from the equipment.
You notice a drastic change in your power bill.
If you notice your HVAC system not operating normally, the next step you should take is to consult an HVAC technician to perform an inspection on your equipment.
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