Month: January 2019

Heating, Cooling and Ventilation Advice for Businesses

There’s much that can be done to improve heating, cooling and ventilation systems within buildings. Some systems are decades old and are hugely energy inefficient. Others just don’t perform well leaving employees too hot in summer and a bit chilly in winter.

Let’s look at some sensible advice regulating temperatures in an office environment.

Using HVAC at a Business

HVAC systems are created to provide both heating and cooling within a business site. That might be an office block or a warehousing operation; or, something that combines the two.

These types of systems have heating units as well as ducting to move either hot or cool air around the building. Ventilation along with using air filters to clean the air before distribution prevents commercial premises from getting stuffy the more people occupy them during the day.

Different technologies are deployed depending on the specific situation. A qualified HVAC manager would assess the proper needs of the organization and create a plan for a solution that fits the bill. This includes how many units, what capacity and type, and where they are to be positioned to provide enough heating, cooling and ventilation in each respective space.

Remember to Swap Out Air Filters Regularly

Air filters are present to clean dirty particles from the air supply. Without them, air could be pulled in from outside the building and pumped into offices (or the existing air recirculated) still with the contaminants present. This is less pleasant for the occupants of the building, but worse for people with allergies or asthma who are particularly sensitive to pollutants that cause irritation to their lungs or nasal passages.

Thermostat Temperature Regulation for Energy Savings

A thermostat uses temperature readings to regulate when the HVAC system should kick into action to warm the office or cool it down. HVAC engineers use different designs and systems like exhaust-only ventilation, balanced ventilation and intermittently balanced ventilation to provide a mix of cleaner air with ventilation, along with heating or cooling as needed.

The use of thermostats and programmable solutions helps reduce the energy bill for the company. Only when the temperature either falls or rises outside a range of acceptable levels will the HVAC system activate to remedy the situation. This results in lower energy use while providing cleaner internal air at the same time.

Regular Maintenance for Operational Efficiency

To keep HVAC systems running efficiently, it’s necessary to stay on a regular maintenance schedule. These maintenance visits include changing the air filters which become clogged from contaminants they’ve collected over time and working on any parts of the system that need some adjustments or a part replaced. With such maintenance visits, companies avoid part or all of their HVAC system breaking down unexpectedly. It doesn’t completely rule out that possibility, but it certainly reduces both the likelihood and repeated instances of it happening.

As long as companies get an efficient heating and cooling system installed and well maintained, it goes a long way to keeping staff happier. Being either too hot or too chilly is an unnecessary distraction for busy employees that interferes with what they need to get done.

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Energy Efficiency Tips for Office Buildings

Energy efficiency is very important. Customers expect businesses to do their bit for the environment these days. Reducing your energy costs is also important from a cost-saving perspective. Any savings you can make will positively affect your bottom line which, in an uncertain economy, is always a good thing. Reducing energy consumption in office buildings is also important for commercial landlords. It’s easier to find tenants when you can show that your buildings are energy efficient.

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Here are some tips to help your business improve energy efficiency in its office buildings.

Turn It Off!

In many offices, IT equipment stays on 24/7. Printers stay on and PCs remain on standby. Unless you have a server room, there is no reason why IT equipment needs to stay switched on all the time. Even if you turn it off, as long as it remains plugged into a power outlet, it’s drawing a charge. Research indicates that switching computers and monitors off at night saves hundreds of dollars each year. The more desks that you have in the office building, the bigger the savings.

Lights are another area where you can save energy. Which type of lights does your building have? If they are not LEDs, then you have room to maneuver. LEDs are the most energy efficient lights. They last many times longer than halogen bulbs. Switch to LEDs where possible. In addition, fit automatic movement sensors and timers, so lights switch off in lavatories when the room is not in use. This will reduce your energy bills in the long-term. You can even extend this to general office areas, although it can be annoying if you are on your own in the office and don’t move for a while – yes, the lights will go out!

Maintaining the Right Temperature

Providing heat and air-conditioning is a huge expense. Unfortunately, many behaviors add to the problem. Opening the window when the air-conditioning is running forces the HVAC to work harder. Not closing window blinds when it gets dark leads to greater heat loss via the windows. If you don’t have a suitable HVAC installed, read this blog on a mechanical power design installation, written by experienced HVAC engineers. It might give you some ideas.

Make sure the air-con system is regularly maintained and serviced. Inefficient systems cost more to run.

Encourage the building’s occupants to keep the thermostat turned down. Offices don’t need to be 21 degrees Celsius. Ideally, each office should have its own control, so individuals can make fine adjustments to their environment without affecting the rest of the building.

Check for Heat Loss

New buildings are better designed when it comes to heat loss. Older buildings less so. Check for draughty windows and doors. Fit insulation strips and draught excluders. Make sure all doors have automatic closers fitted.

Finally, look into ways to make your building more self-sufficient. Photo-voltaic panels generate electricity from the sun, which can be used to power light and heat. Wind turbines are also worth looking into.

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