How HVAC Works in Large Buildings

March 18, 2021

The HVAC system in a commercial building keeps occupants comfortable and maintains a safe working temperature. Large buildings with multiple floors need proper ventilation to provide an optimum environment for the effective operation of computers, server rooms, specialized machines, and devices with delicate calibration and heat sensitivity.

HVAC is an acronym for the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system that regulates airflow and temperature throughout a commercial structure. A commercial HVAC system heats and cools large spaces. Unlike compact units found in homes, the ones installed in large buildings must be very robust and contain many components to control and maintain an ideal building temperature. Restaurants, hotels, skyscrapers, office buildings, and shopping malls all use HVAC systems.

HVAC System Components

The HVAC works in large buildings by facilitating three processes: heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. These processes are all controlled by one central thermostat. All three systems work together to ensure proper temperature regulation and ventilation. The thermostat manages the efficient production of heat or chilled air. The furnace pulls in the fresh air, and the heat exchanger (inside the furnace) heats the air. For cold air, the condenser unit condenses gas which transfers through refrigerant lines. It's turned to liquid form through the cooling process; the ductwork and vents distribute the air through the building.

Heating: The thermostat starts the heating process by sending a signal to the furnace. The gas valve opens to ignite the gas burner, the heat exchanger transforms the air, and an internal fan and motor push the air through the ductwork and vents it throughout the building.

Ventilation: Proper ventilation controls the amount of fresh air (heated or cooled) that enters a commercial space, preventing odor and mold. Flues and vent pipes remove contaminants.

Cooling: AC units use refrigerant gases to absorb heat and cool the air. These absorb heat. The gas is compressed, which raises the temperature. Once pressurized, the gas is transferred into a condensation coil, releasing the heat, changing the gas into a cooler liquid. A blower releases the warm air over an evaporator, turning the liquid back into a cooler gas, then it absorbs the heat from the air and cools it.

HVAC Cleaning, Servicing, and Repair

It is crucial to maintain your HVAC system. Conduct periodic cleaning, and have it serviced at least once a year. Immediately call a technician if you need repairs. Maintenance by a certified HVAC technician will save a lot of money over time. Regular services will increase your equipment's lifespan, maintain a consistent temperature, make your building more comfortable, and ensure your air quality for a healthy working environment. HVAC access doors protect delicate system components from unauthorized tampering and allow easy access by service personnel. For safe and efficient installation, follow the manufacturer's instructions. Installation typically involves cutting an opening in the sheet-metal ductwork.

Scheduled Servicing: Ideally, HVAC systems need scheduled service twice a year. Your licensed technician should inspect in the spring and the fall, at minimum, schedule service on an annual basis. Servicing by a certified HVAC technician typically includes a visual inspection, air filter replacement, checking the condenser unit, and coil cleaning.

Air Filter Cleaning and Replacement: Failure to clean dirty air filters can lead to severe condenser unit problems. Dirt makes it difficult for air to pass through, causing the condenser unit to work twice as hard. Air filters last a long time with proper cleaning and maintenance. Replacement only becomes necessary in the case of a large tear in the screen.

Coil Cleaning: The evaporator and condenser coils handle different aspects of the cooling cycle. These coils need regular cleaning to ensure the cooling process is undisturbed.

Calling for Repair: If your HVAC system breaks down or a component is malfunctioning, call for immediate inspection and repair. Your furnace is the most significant part of your HVAC system. Ignoring issues may lead to a costly but necessary furnace replacement. A repair technician will look for cracked heat exchangers and test for excess carbon monoxide to protect your commercial property and improve your system's longevity as a whole.

Installing HVAC Access Doors Makes Sense!

Best Access Doors highly recommends installing HVAC access doors to allow service technicians and maintenance personnel easy access to your HVAC components, neatly hidden behind the walls. Access doors conceal unsightly ventilation, ducts, and wires, preventing unauthorized tampering as well.

We have access doors and panels for your restaurant's kitchen exhaust system; We also have metal-air handlers and drywall-inlay hidden air handler access doors for HVAC applications. Our doors can be bolted into existing ductwork and have special features, including duct cut-out templates and two handles for easy installation (and removal). Constructed from high-quality materials like 16 gauge galvanized steel, all of our HVAC access doors meet and exceed mechanical code requirements. For more information, call us at 1-800-483-0823 or explore our collection of HVAC access doors online. We even do custom!

Crystal Simmons
Crystal Simmons is a freelance writer and is passionate about helping people. She also has her own blog where she shares her tips and tricks.

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