Friday, 27 June 2014

Air Balancing Keeps HVAC Systems Running Smoothly

To achieve optimal operation of air conditioning and heating systems, three major steps play a key role. They are Testing, Adjusting and Balancing (TAB). Here, we will focus on "air balance." Air balance is a process by which the performance of a simple or complex HVAC system can be measured. It is an important part, but often overlooked, in ensuring that the building or living area is optimized for both efficiency and personal comfort.

Why is Air Balancing Important?
  • If air is not properly balanced, many problems arise. One such problem is condensation. The indoors can have drafts and cold spots, making the air unpleasant.
  • Improper air balance will also cost money as it applies extra stress on heating and cooling equipment. There are risks of your HVAC system getting damaged along with health and safety concerns as well.
  • When air is not correctly balanced, energy is wasted and contaminants are allowed to enter the room, as condensation takes place.
  • This can result in food and health safety issues as the residents are prone to inhale carbon dioxide

The Concept of Air Balancing

We all understand that air always tries and equalizes pressure. If we bring inside the same amount of air that we expel, there will be neutral air balance. If we bring in more air than the amount we expel, there is positive air balance. On the other hand, if we expel more air than we bring in, there is negative air balance.

Negative air balance is common in old buildings and buildings that have been extended or re-purposed. In such cases, the air is being drawn in from even the smallest gaps, not only from open doors and windows. The air that flows inside is untreated and has a different temperature compared to the air within. This causes problems in the HVAC efficiency, and the condensation prepares a breeding ground for contaminants.

Key Benefits

There is no doubt that when the HVAC system is under additional stress, there is more energy consumed. When the air indoors is not balanced, the air conditioner needs to work harder to keep this temperature. There is a spike in your energy costs. Improper balance can damage the HVAC system and the condensation that forms may prove to be costly. Here are some key advantages of air balancing,
  • Prolonged equipment life
  • Reduced maintenance costs
  • Comfortable environment
  • Improved air quality indoors creates a healthy environment

Types of Air Balance

Basically, there are two types of air balance: Comfort balance and AABC Certified Air Balance.

"Comfort balance" is simply checking to see whether the indoors feel comfortably conditioned.  The purpose of AABC Certified Air Balance is to ensure that all components of the system work in harmony, and at optimum performance, to provide total occupant comfort.

Now, it is your choice to pick the type of air balance you would like in your home. It is better to hire a good air balance company with skillful technicians to conduct an air balance inspection. The results will help you decide on the necessity of making the required corrections.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Get the Most Out of Your HVAC in Summer

Summer is the time when we need air conditioning the most. The sunny days, the heat and sweat that come with summer make us hurry indoors, into the cool comfort of our homes and offices. As the need for the air conditioned coolness is an important necessity for us, so is the fact that we ensure that tour HVAC systems w ill run smoothly, without any problems.

The air conditioner falling sick in summer is the worst thing that can happen to us. The very thought can cause stress. However, just as air conditioning systems cater to our comfort needs, we too need to look after the requirements of our HVAC systems.

Here are some tips that can ensure the smooth functioning of your air conditioners in summer.
    1. Test Run
    2. In all likelihood, the air conditioner was sleeping cozily while you were using the heating system. Before summer really sets in, you can test run your air conditioner and check if the cooling is as required. Engage a HVAC technician who will check the system and predict any dangers that may be lurking. And technicians are easier to get during the off-peak season, and their charges will be reasonable too.

    3. Maintenance
    4. Regular maintenance is very important for a smooth, long and efficient life of your air conditioner. The first thing you need to make sure is that you check the filter regularly. In summer, the air conditioner is used almost full time. This is the reason enough to clean the filter regularly, once is a fortnight would be ideal, but once in three weeks is a must. Clean the evaporator coils every year and straightening any bent that there may be. Better still, draw up a contract with a HVAC company that will send across a professional for a periodic check and cleaning.

    5. Use a Programmable Thermostat
    6. It is not always that you need use the air conditioner at the same temperature. For example, you may like the comfort of say 70 degrees. But it is not necessary that your air conditioner works to maintain the same temperature throughout. When you are not at home, you sold set the temperature at a higher temperature, which will translate into reduction in the pressure of the compressor as well as lesser energy bills.  Get a programmable thermostat to reduce the cooling when you are away or set the thermostat in the sleep mode. Efficient use of this handy device can save almost $200 annually.

    7. Get a New System
    8. If your air conditioner is over ten years old, it is time you replace it with a new one. An old system has a large appetite when it comes to energy consumption. They are also prone to chills and ills, thus unpredictable. Repairs can create a hole in your pocket.

    9. Prevent Leakage
    10. Check to see if there are any leaks in your home, or in the rooms where you have the air conditioning. This will prevent leakage of precious cool air. Try sealing your ducts with insulation. Sealing and insulation need effort but it is worthwhile in energy efficiency, regardless of the season.

These tips will help you choose effective ways of reducing energy bills.