DOE Wants to Help You Improve Your Commercial HVAC Systems Efficiency

Our AEE chapter meeting in January was the kick off meeting for the George Washington University’s new student chapter. The speaker was Ms. Karen Butler, EPA’s National Manager Commercial Building Design Initiative – Energy Star.

As you might imagine, EPA’s interest in efficient building design and operation is to promote the reduction of energy consumption and the avoidance of the pollution that results from producing the unnecessary energy. The ‘Target Finder Tool’ is part of the EPA’s ‘Energy Star Portfolio’ a collection of no cost, on line tools that can help you design more energy efficient buildings, track their performance and compare them to similar, energy efficient commercial air conditioners, facilities.


Variable Frequency Drives in Single Zone Rooftop HVAC Units as Installed by Commercial HVAC Contractors

As Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) become more affordable, there are more applications where their energy savings make them economically viable. One relatively new use is the control of evaporator blowers in single zone rooftop units. The fan energy savings are obvious, especially if you are familiar with fan energy consumption (fan laws). A fan running at one-half speed uses one-eighth of the energy of a fan running at full speed. In addition, the lower air flow across the evaporator coil results in the air being cooled to a lower temperature, which in turn removes more moisture, lowering the humidity in the space. If you have commercial HVAC specialists add VFDs to your equipment, you can obtain additional savings by raising the cooling setpoint since the occupants may be just as comfortable at a slightly higher temperature with the lower humidity.

How to Find a Good HVAC Contractor

The eventual breakdown of a heater is an undeniable reality. Despite hard-nosed maintenance efforts, constant usage and unpredictable weather, like the cold wave North America has experienced over the past weeks, can wear any machine down.

Fortunately, there are HVAC repair services that can solve your heating problems and provide immediate warmth to those that need it immediately. However, there are a lot of services that promise high-quality HVAC work, so finding the right service can become a tedious search for anyone to do.

Dazed homeowners shouldn’t worry, as there are qualities that you can look for in a HVAC contractor that can help you find the best.

One way of finding out an HVAC contractor’s capabilities is through its other customers. If these customers are satisfied with the work the contractor has done, then you can be assured of the same quality of service.

Another thing to consider is the importance of diagnostics for the contractor. A good contractor will stress the importance of diagnostic testing, and will quote a price from the tests done by the contractor.

Finally, a trusted contractor will show customers how to take care of their HVAC systems. Good heating contractors do not simply repair heating systems; they help the homeowner maintain it for a long period of time.

Signs You Need a New Commercial Air Conditioner

Commercial air conditioners are a technological marvel as these units are powerful enough to regulate the ambient temperature of gigantic structures like malls, stadiums, and concert halls. However, commercial air conditioners are still air conditioners at their very essence. As such, even the sturdiest commercial air conditioners will start to break down at one point.

Fortunately, commercial air conditioners exhibit several subtle warning signs once they near the end of their useful life. With that in mind, be sure to keep an eye out for the following signs:

High Energy Bills

As a commercial air conditioner nears the end, it has to start using more energy to maintain the desired temperature, resulting in higher energy bills. Obviously, your energy bills are much larger than the bill of a residential unit, but you should keep an eye out for constant increases in your energy bill.

Frequent Repairs

In an effort to save money, you might try to have your unit repaired by a professional HVAC technician. All this really does is buy time. Once your air conditioning unit starts breaking down every so often, it is probably time to have the unit replaced.

If your commercial air conditioner is exhibiting the signs mentioned above, do not hesitate to call a commercial HVAC contractor for an estimate for a new unit. The sooner you call, the faster your customers will stop complaining about the building being warm.