Timely HVAC Tips from ENERGY STAR

04/30/2013 |

Heating and cooling tune-ups that cut energy consumption

Shifting from the heating to cooling season brings the potential for occupant discomfort. There are several steps you can take to make sure your building is in optimal temperature range, notes ENERGY STAR.

Are you doing your best to keep buildings in optimal temperature range? The shift from heating to cooling season is prime time for occupant discomfort.

Taking matters into their own hands, occupants frequently adjust wall thermostats, throwing off controls and causing unintended energy consumption within a building. Likewise, temperature sensors may drift over time and increase heating and cooling loads, in turn leading back to occupant discomfort.

It’s a vicious cycle. Don’t tune out the red flags. Take the following measures from ENERGY STAR to tune up the heating and cooling controls and components in your facility.

  • Calibrate the indoor and outdoor building sensors. Calibration of room thermostats, duct thermostats, humidistats, and pressure and temperature sensors should be in accordance with the original design specifications. Calibrating these controls may require specialized skills or equipment and you may need to call for outside expertise.

  • Inspect damper and valve controls to make sure they are functioning properly. Check pneumatically controlled dampers for leaks in the compressed-air hoses. Also examine dampers to ensure that they open and close properly. Stiff dampers can cause improper modulation of the amount of outside air being used in the supply airstream. In some cases, dampers may actually be wired in a single position or disconnected, violating minimum outside air requirements.

  • Refine building operating schedules. HVAC controls must be adjusted to heat and cool the building properly during occupied hours. Occupancy schedules can change frequently over the life of a building, and control schedules should be adjusted accordingly. Operating schedules should also be adjusted to reflect daylight savings time. When the building is unoccupied, set the temperature back to save some heating or cooling energy, but keep in mind that some minimum heating and cooling may be required when the building is unoccupied. In cold climates, for example, heating may be needed to keep water pipes from freezing.

  • Review the utility rate schedule. Utilities typically charge on-peak and off-peak times within a rate, which can dramatically affect the amount of electric bills. If possible, equipment should run during the less expensive off-peak hours. For certain buildings, precooling and/or preheating strategies may be called for.

  • Chiller tube cleaning and water treatment. These tasks can improve the performance of a chiller system by providing cleaner surfaces for heat transfer on both the refrigerant and water sides of the chiller tube.

Tune-ups are also helpful during the recommissioning process. Savings from these tune-up measures can range up to 30% of annual heating and cooling costs, notes ENERGY STAR.

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Connectrac® wireways are the new standard for bringing power & communications cable management to all interior applications. Free yourself from core drilling!

Surpass State Energy Requirements with Dual-Cooling Data Center CRAC Technology

See how professionals like you are taking advantage of the highest performing precision cooling system for their computer rooms and data centers, and why Data Aire is fast-becoming the number one choice for facility managers and building owners looking to decrease their energy consumption. 

Data Aire understands how digital technology and data gravity is rapidly impacting and transforming businesses. That’s why they developed ultra-efficient cooling technology to support the most modern (and not-so-modern) data centers.  Learn how One Wilshire in Los Angeles, one of the most advanced carrier hotels today, is surpassing California's strict energy efficiency requirements with Data Aire’s purpose-built system, which provide full-economization for 260 days – almost 72% of the year. That’s a measurable savings! Furthermore, the projected PUE on an annual basis for a full load is at or below 1.2.


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