Refrigeration And Air Conditioning Service
The ozone layer protects the earth from the harmful ultraviolet radiation from the sun. So protecting it is vital, and proper refrigeration and air conditioning service is a vital part of this protection. Many synthetic chemicals commonly used as refrigerants destroy the ozone layer if they are improperly released during refrigeration and air conditioning service. These chemicals include chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), halons, and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). In fact, it is believe that release of these chemicals during poorly managed refrigeration and air conditioning service contributed to the “ozone hole” that now exists over the South Pole.
Additionally, many of these same ozone depleting substances (ODS) are believed to be greenhouse gases that are contributing to climate change. So when they are irresponsibly released during shoddy refrigeration and air conditioning service there is a double hit to the environment. These are the main reasons behind section 608 of The Clean Air Act which specifically prohibits the release of CFCs, HCFCs, their blends, and substitute refrigerants during refrigeration and air conditioning service.
Section 608 of The Clean Air Act has the following regulatory requirements:
Technician Certification-technicians performing refrigeration and air conditioning service must meet EPA certification criteria by passing an EPA approved exam.
Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Service Requirements-technicians must evacuate equipment to established vacuum levels during service and disposal of refrigerants.
Refrigerant Recovery and Recycling Equipment-equipment used during service must be certified by EPA approved testing.
Refrigerant Leaks-there are specific EPA standards that are enforced for leak repair during refrigeration and air conditioning service.
Refrigerant Sales Restrictions-sale of ODS refrigerants is restricted to certified technicians.
Major Record Keeping Requirements-all parties involved in refrigeration and air conditioning service must maintain records documenting dates, refrigerant charge amounts, and related service information. This includes technicians, equipment owners, and operators of large refrigeration and air conditioning service and equipment sales companies.
Safe Disposal Requirements-when refrigeration and air conditioning equipment is taken out of service the final person in the disposal chain must ensure that all refrigerants have been removed from the equipment prior to disposal.
In support of Section 608 of The Clean Air Act the EPA is performing random inspections, responding to tips, and pursuing potential violations. They are authorized to assess fines of up to $37,500 per day for any violation of these regulations.
It is vital that proper refrigeration and air conditioning service is performed on your equipment not only to protect the environment but also to avoid potentially costly fines.
Commercial HVAC Cost Control
During your next scheduled industrial air conditioning service, you might want to consider requesting an energy audit as well. While you may spend money on commercial HVAC services on a regular basis to ensure your commercial HVAC system is operating properly and not burning energy inefficiently it is important to also know how well your building is holding the heat that your commercial HVAC system is producing. If your building is not holding the hot or cold air your commercial HVAC system is producing, then you’re throwing away money through the leaks. If the service technician tells you your HVAC system seems to be doing well each time you have an industrial air conditioning service inspection but your energy bills seem too high, then energy leaks might be the main culprit.
Energy Leaks in a Commercial HVAC System
Even though energy leaks are usually discussed regarding loss of heat during the winter months, they can also negatively affect the indoor air temperature during the hot summer months. A building energy audit will determine whether or not you structure is properly insulated and can be one of the most important commercial HVAC services you invest in. A proper energy audit can detect exactly where in your building is lacking insulation and sealing. They can also show you how to save money on hot water and electric bills. Maintaining the temperature within a building which has not been properly weatherized is like trying to regulate the temperature in a room with an open window. To achieve a comfortable temperature, you have to spend a considerable amount more on commercial HVAC costs than if the window was closed.
Weatherizing a building is inexpensive when you take into consideration how much money you’ll be saving over time in heating and air conditioning. To determine what your building’s specific weatherization needs are, an energy auditor will use a blower to determine how much air can get out through a door and how tightly sealed the building is. Using a calibrated blower can tell you exactly how much air is getting out through the cracks. After the building is weatherized the auditor will retest the building to ensure the efficiency issues have been resolved. A reduction in your commercial HVAC bill will also tell you things have improved.
Ways To Detect Leaks In Your Commercial HVAC System
Infrared cameras and infrared thermographs can also be used to detect energy leaks. These will show the temperature differences in various areas of a building. By pointing out where the hot and cold spots are, you can then determine where your energy from your commercial HVAC system is leaking. Again, the auditor should use these tools before and after the building is weatherized to ensure that the leakage problems have been fixed.
All buildings have energy losses. In homes, this is usually in attics and chimneys. Basements can also be sources of lost energy through joists and other structural joints. To reduce energy losses from your commercial HVAC system be sure to keep windows and doors closed when the system is running. The efficiency of the boiler and chiller can also help you cut energy losses and costs. Using an auditor can help you determine how to reduce big energy losses as well as small energy losses. So even minor fixes like gaskets behind outlets will have a positive impact on your energy costs and will help your commercial HVAC system run as efficiently as possible.
Contact Sacramento Refrigeration to schedule an energy audit of your commercial HVAC system.