It might be particulate pollution. It might be debris from outside. It might be food debris from indoors. It might tiny particles from people entering and leaving a building. It might even be skin cells—which just so happen to be shed at a rate of one pound per person per year. Or maybe it’s even fur from the office “bring the dog to work day.” (1).
All of these things are just a few of the many examples of what can get into the coil area of the refrigerator, freezer or even your AC unit.
Regular cleaning is critical is preventing this build-up, and while in theory many building owners and facility managers know this, as much as 20 percent of the time, it’s not cleaned as often as it should be (1).
Why does preventative maintenance really matter—and what are a few misconceptions about how often it should happen? And what else can be done to help make sure preventative maintenance happens, when it should, even if a business owner or top management doesn’t seem to want to make that investment?
Here we take a look at what every facility manager needs to know about regular maintenance to combat electrolysis that commonly clogs equipment, especially here in the Midwest.
What Building Managers Need to Know About Ensuring Equipment Efficiency
Here are 3 things you want to know, especially for those in the Midwest:
Preventative maintenance is a huge factor in extending the life of your equipment
We all know that the data you see when you get a new unit is impressive, or even the data or stats you’re looking to hit when you first purchase equipment and get your system running.
Ever wonder why you aren’t hitting those same stats months later?
The reason you aren’t seeing the same performance, in short, is likely because the equipment isn’t properly maintained. If it’s not properly maintained, the efficiency majorly suffers due to what’s often called “white fuzz”—or the electrolysis that happens as a result of weather, climate conditions, leaves, and visible white fuzz from trees and surrounding landscaping, too (1).
In many cases, building owners think that two tune-ups a year are enough to combat all these sources of white fuzz, but the reality is that often times, more preventative maintenance visits are needed. The consequences of ignoring this advice: equipment that doesn’t run well or even worse—a system that breaks down due to the lack of equipment maintenance (1).
Preventative maintenance saves you major money
We always cite how greater efficiency brings great savings. A lot of times people think about how they save hundreds in their home. But the reality is that often times with commercial units, the potential for savings is even greater.
Just how great can the savings be when your system is properly maintained? One recent study showed that across 10 units, when coils were cleaned on-time, the units showed an average of 47 percent reduction electricity usage required to run (1). The study also showed the energy savings from proper coil cleaning was about 17 percent on average (1). It’s not necessarily a surprise, but it shows just how major the savings can be.
So that means your saving money in multiple ways: you are saving because the appliance is running more optimally and efficiently; you are saving because there is no malfunction or downtime (which in some cases can save you even more money depending on the conditions or the inventory on hand); and you are saving because the unit will last longer (1). Last, you set yourself up for success when you can show a manufacturer that the necessary maintenance—often more than twice per year—has been done consistently.
Preventative maintenance can be better for our air and for our planet
Cooling equipment, when optimized, can really make a change in the environment. That’s because small changes really add up. In fact better monitoring, maintenance, and optimization of cooling equipment can save up to 30 gigatons—that’s right gigatons— of CO2 emissions by the time 2050 rolls around (1). That’s a staggering number that shows just how much we can improve the air we breathe, and how much we can benefit our environment, too.
What Building Managers Need to Know About Overcoming Common Barriers to HVAC Preventative Maintenance
There are several barriers to making sure preventative maintenance gets accomplished to protect your equipment. Here’s a look at just a few of those, and what you can do to try to combat those barriers:
Top decision makers are unaware or don’t care. Sometimes it can be a lack of education or knowledge on how important this regular maintenance is; if someone who is making the decision isn’t aware of the importance of maintenance that happens more than twice per year, it’s not going to be prioritized. That’s where facility managers can do their best to education those at the top so they know all the short- and long-term benefits of regular, frequent tune-ups (1).
Refrigeration coils can be forgotten about. Another issue? Sometimes occupants and even facility managers can tend to push efficiency programs aimed at AC, sometimes entirely forgetting refrigerators and freezers, as if those don’t exist. Again, it might be an awareness issue, so do your best to combat this “inattention” to what may just be “out of sight” and therefore out of mind (1).
Turn to Greater Comfort for Your HVAC Preventative Maintenance
Greater Comfort is your go-to resource for dependable HVAC services, support, and regular maintenance. From install to repair—and from maintenance to innovative solutions—we’re here to help you with all your commercial heating and cooling needs.
To get a free estimate for your business, contact us today at greatercomfort.com or call 859-491-4915.