Problem Solving 101: Why Custom HVAC Equipment is the Solution
9 Ways to Increase Indoor Air Quality During the Winter Months

Summer and hotter temperatures often times catch us off guard. Depending on the previous season, warmer temperatures can start ramping up a month or so before we’re ready. Depending on the location, temperatures can fluctuate before the steady heat of the summer kicks in.

As a facility manager, it is important to anticipate these changes. The temperature in your facility can affect the employees, the operation of equipment and the outcome of the product you’re manufacturing.

This is why it is critical to know how warm weather challenges building systems.

Here are 5 challenges that warm weather can present to your facility, along with solutions to restore and maintain worker comfort.

Warm Weather Challenges for HVAC Systems

  • Warm weather taxes the HVAC System. Hot temperatures require fans and compressors to run longer to cool offices. Longer run times increase energy consumption, as well as wear and tear on the equipment.
  • Control vestibule temperatures rise. As the sun burns bright throughout the day, the temperature inside the control vestibule rises, which can result in reduced component performance and useful life.
  • Older or insufficiently sized system will not properly handle the facility. If the HVAC equipment is more than 20 years old, regular maintenance issues could be expected, simply because of the age of the system. If the size of the facility is increased but the HVAC equipment remains the same, the HVAC system may not be able to handle the extra load.
  • Lack of air circulation in the workspace effects indoor air quality. Summer weather often brings oppressive heat to an industrial facility and so this highlights the importance of good air movement.
  • Overall employee comfort and productivity must be considered. It is difficult to productively work in uncomfortable conditions. Employees that have to work in a building that has poor indoor air quality are not only unhappy, but the conditions impede productivity and the company’s overall bottom line.


Tips for a Cooler Summer

Start up the HVAC equipment before the workers arrive and run after they leave

The cost to mechanically cool an industrial production plant or warehouse can be prohibitive. Therefore one must think of other methods to reduce the temperature of the work space. A simple but effective method is to utilize a time clock to start the makeup air equipment early in the morning before production workers show up and to run the system for a while after workers leave at the end of the day. Doing this will exhaust warm air out of the plant at the end of the day and bring cool morning air into the plant before the day starts. Doing this will not only get warm air out of the plant but it will also push out contaminants thereby providing better air quality for production workers.

Disable the heating mode of the equipment.

Disabling the heating mode of the equipment eliminates the chance of heat being produced during the warmer months when heat is not needed. This will help reduce fuel expenses as well as help keep the workspace as cool as possible. You’d be surprised how many people forget to change the mode of operation on make-up air equipment.

Replace filters more often.

The spring and summer months mean more allergens like pollen and dust, as well as seeds are moving and shaking through the air and clogging up air filters more than in the fall and winter. Increase the frequency of changing the filters to help maintain clean air throughout the building.

Have an HVAC maintenance check.

Committing to a regular maintenance check schedule can identify vulnerable areas in the system that impairs efficiency, causes system failures and reduces indoor air quality. Regular maintenance will help keep the system and controls working properly.

Planning on building a new facility?

Take HVAC equipment planning into consideration. As an industrial business grows, it may have to relocate or build a new facility. Take time with the architects and carefully plan an HVAC system that takes into account square footage, number of employees and the overall operation of the facility.