Proper maintenance of your building’s heating and air conditioning system will:
1. Lower utility costs (by as much as 42%)
2. Increase the service life of the equipment (reducing replacement costs)
3. Provide a greater level of comfort to the occupants resulting in:
- Greater sales per square foot for retailers
- Higher level of productivity for office environments
- Lower employee absentee rates
4. Reduce your risk of exposing the occupants to IAQ problems (which in turn helps reduce your exposure to potential IAQ litigation).
5. Minimize emergency and unplanned repair expenses and down time.
What are the best practices being followed today, in the industry, by experienced and trained HVAC professionals?
1. Replace filters (every 1 to 6 months)
Dirty filters can decrease cooling and heating output of the system as well as increase energy used by the system. Filters should be inspected monthly (at a minimum) and possibly replaced monthly as well. A good quality filter (a minimum of a MERV 8) should be installed at least quarterly in many systems. (Actual replacement time frames vary and your HVAC technician can help you determine what is best for your systems.)
2. Clean Evaporator and Condenser Coils (1 to 2 times per year)
Evaporator coils, during cooling season, are damp and wet, and provide an excellent place for molds and bacteria to grow. If they are cleaned regularly, then mold and bacteria growth can be minimized.
Condenser coils are exposed to unfiltered outdoor air and can see considerable perform reductions due to dirt, leaves, grass, etc. which are sucked into them during normal operation. Keeping these coils clean helps keep the system efficiency at its maximum and improves the longevity of the system.
3. Inspect areas around air intakes (2 times a year)
These are places where water, mold, bacteria, and other airborne contaminants can be drawn into the building. It is important to visually inspect and clean these areas if necessary to ensure proper indoor air quality all year long.
4. Clean and adjust dampers (Annually)
Improperly operating dampers can dramatically impact indoor air quality and
equipment operation. It is important these be checked for proper operation at least
once per year.
5. Inspect the fan wheel, bearings and fan motor belts (2 times per year)
Fan assemblies should be inspected and cleaned, if necessary, at least twice a year. Improper airflow, as a result of dirt or improper rotation can result in increased energy costs and poor occupant comfort. Belts also need to be inspected and tightened or changed, if necessary to insure proper operation of the air delivery system.