Properly balanced air conditioner systems insure healthy, comfortable air quality. There are many conditions that can create an unbalanced system. Unbalanced systems are not only uncomfortable, they can be the cause of mounting maintenance costs, and can create harmful and unhealthy interior environmental conditions, which can expose building owners to liable lawsuits.
Unbalanced Air Systems
Symptoms of unbalanced air systems include uncomfortable drafts of air, room temperatures not matching thermostat settings. Unbalanced systems can cause pressure differences that draw in outside air, condensation, insufficient air flow, over-amping motors on fans and compressors, increased energy costs, and “sick building syndrome” where conditions are created that encourage mold and mildew grow in the walls and ceilings.
HVAC Testing and Balancing
HVAC testing and balancing is the process of making sure that your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system is working to design conditions. This process involves several steps, such as:
- testing functionality
- measuring initial airflow
- checking fan rotational speeds
- adjusting dampers
- testing final air flows
- pressurization testing
In the testing process we measure temperatures, pressures, rotational speeds, electrical characteristics, velocities, and air and water qualities for an evaluation of components and system performance.
Precision adjustments are made in the final stages of balancing devices, such as adjusting fan speeds, as well as dampers and valves.
System fluids are balanced and regulated for all hydronic system components to reach the desired airflow or water flow.
Specification and Controls Verification
In the verification process, Capital Air Balance will insure that the installed equipment meets the design specs. Automatic and manual controls will be tested for full functionality and performance including:
- testing fans controls
- regulation of air temperatures
- regulation of air flow
- air pressures
- damper controls
- fan speed verification
Programmable timers and switches should have battery backups to reset all controls in case of a power failure, and thermostats should be properly placed away from exterior walls. Humidity regulation and extreme conditions must also be tested based on the system specifications.
Critical Systems Testing
Certain facilities require special, very specific systems testing and certifications. Some of those facilities include:
- surgical centers
- medical facilities
- data centers
Where systems are critical, it is vital that all specifications for the system design are met and tested prior to a failure. Capital Air Balance is familiar with critical systems and will work with your systems designers, system engineers, and physical facilities managers to establish testing, critical load, and certification criteria.