Category Archives: News

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If your air conditioning unit is proving expensive, here are some simple tips to improve energy efficiency!

If your air conditioning unit is proving expensive, here are some simple tips to improve energy efficiency!

As energy costs start to rise once again, there is a need for businesses to monitor their energy output looking at ways to save energy costs, efficiency of air conditioning systems is one such area businesses can explore to make some savings. Either regular maintenance by air conditioning professionals or some simple tasks and checks you can carry out yourself are all beneficial and create cost saving opportunities.

Older systems are certainly less efficient in comparison to the more modern energy efficient systems we install nowadays, but all units benefit from regular cleaning and checks. Here are a few tips you can consider to improve the efficiency of your air conditioning and reduce that escalating energy bill…

  • Clean debris from the unit’s housing ensuring there is a sufficiency clearance around it. Leaves, bird feathers and other debris can become lodged which will effect the efficiency of the unit. Also, where the unit is at ground level, bushes and plants should be trimmed back so there is enough clearance for the unit to operate efficiently.
  • Check air filters to check they are clean, as dirty filters slow down the circulation of air. Sometimes filters are beyond cleaning, and this is when you will need the service of a professional to replace damaged or worn out filters. These should at the very least be changed annually.
  • The ventilation flaps or fins are very often bumped or closed if the unit is in proximity of people, and this will restrict proper air flow to the unit. If damaged these would need to be replaced to maximise efficiency.
  • Shading of an exterior unit is important, either by natural means of overhead trees or by installing a cover to block the sun’s heat. Shaded units operate up to 10 percent more efficiently if they are protected from the sun.
  • Set temperature settings or timers to reduce the need or output during night time, or when your building is vacant. A huge amount of energy is wasted because air conditioning units are running through the night, so worth making sure you only use the unit when needed.
  • Improve ventilation – Sometimes better ventilation can reduce the requirements of the unit to work hard in cooling your office or building. Good ventilation is also much more conducive to a better working environment for your teams.
  • Although it is very nice to have the sun bursting through a window, this also creates a great deal of heat, so strategically placed shading can make a huge different to how hard the air conditioning unit needs to work.
  • Badly fitting doors or windows, or even shutting doors to the outside can reduce energy. Just like the air conditioning in your car, shutting exterior openings can greatly reduce how hard your unit has to work, without of course being detrimental to the ventilation your premises requires.

If you find that your air conditioning isn’t working properly, or still eating up energy costs having followed our simple guide, the professional team at Thermalair can advise on the next steps to take, whether that is a full service of the unit, or replacing with a modern efficient air conditioning system. Remember, the latest systems are more geared towards temperature control, so cater for heating and cooling requirements, with further savings to be made on your energy bill.

 

 

 

 

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Consultancy is the key to getting the best performance!

At Thermalair we often come across inefficiency in HVAC and refrigeration systems, and sometimes unfortunately due to bad advice the client has received previously. Our initial consultancy service has proven popular, and helps businesses to make the right decisions around HVAC and refrigeration.

Our team at Thermalair are certainly well qualified, and our consultants are perfectly placed to provide the best advice for our clients. Providing initial consultancy can be a simple or a complex task, and this depends on the extent of the infrastructure requirements we are dealing with. However, even the simplest of projects need the right advice from the start, or the client could be missing out on potential bill savings that new efficient technology can provide.

A typical example of this was a recent project we consulted on, which was a large retail warehouse that was running a rather antiquated gas fired warm air heating system. The premises had a very large open glass frontage which created a sun trap in the summer, but required considerable heating throughout the winter. Although the gas fired system was reasonably efficient, it wasn’t conducive to providing a consistent air temperature right across the premises, and also certainly inefficient in regards to running costs. It was also pretty noisy, and costs to run it over a five-month winter period amounted to approximately £4,000, not including any maintenance costs.

Planning and recommendations

It was important to look at the space properly, and look at how we can plan the placement of modern climate control system, which would have a positive impact on cost savings, but also the temperature right across the premises.

Interestingly, the premises used solar panels for electricity, so installing a system that could benefit from the solar input would potentially have a major impact on that £4,000 winter cost. The solar panels were generating a considerable amount of electricity, so to tap into that by installing a modern and efficient climate control system not only gave the company a cheap heating solution from November through to March, it provided air conditioning during the hotter summer months, and was extremely beneficial with the south facing glass frontage. The reduction in running cost was an obvious benefit,  but providing a more comfortable working environment for staff would improve productivity for the company.

We also looked at the payback period, which was approximately three years. So an approximate £10,000 installation created a long-term saving for the client.

This project is typical of our consultancy service, and many of our peers would probably have seen a greater long-term financial benefit to maintaining an old and tired out system. At Thermalair we continually strive to save our customers money first and foremost, and the obvious cost savings with increased energy efficiency is always top of our agenda.

Find out more about our consultancy service!

The temperature is dropping, are you HVAC ready?

winter-is-comingWe are now unfortunately seeing the last of British summer time, and the statutory Boots and M&S TV advertisements will be upon us soon. Temperatures are dipping and the night is setting in before many of us have left the office or factory.

It’s the time when Thermalair get very busy with the servicing of HVAC systems. Your HVAC environment will need to be ready with changing temperatures, and very often it is the time where system problems are highlighted, or that tired equipment starts to break down.

If your system isn’t ready for the cold weather, it is important to note that the average demand for heating within a commercial building is 33% of energy consumption, so inefficiency can be costly throughout the duration of a winter season, with a direct and negative impact on your bottom line.

So how to prepare your HVAC system for winter, and what to consider…

 

Replacement – Any system that is older than 10 years will have certainly lost efficiency, even if it has been regularly serviced. We have seen efficiency on older systems drop to as much as half the originally stated manufacturers efficiency statistics, or to put it another way, the cost to run the system almost doubles. Before spending on your existing system consider the cost to replace and the payback period relative to modern systems that are a great deal more energy efficient than those installed over 10 years ago. The latest and most advanced technology includes remote monitoring, so we can inform you when there is an issue with your HVAC system.

Servicing and filter replacement – If you decide to keep your existing system, being prepared means a good overhaul or service of the existing system. Changing filters, calibrating thermostats and a full inspection and service is required to make sure it is running as efficient as it should be. With many moving parts, and the cost of an inefficient heating system, you can easily realise the financial rewards of regular maintenance.

Programmable Thermostats – Many older systems don’t have this type of technology, and could be a very worthwhile investment for your HVAC system. It provides the opportunity to program and regulate temperature throughout the day, and across your premises. This can provide a potential cost saving of up to 75%, for what in most circumstances is a relatively cost effective installation.

HVAC Maintenance Agreements – At Thermalair we can put in place a maintenance agreement which ultimately saves cost by running your system at peak performance. This also provides peace of mind knowing that your HVAC system is less likely to break down, and if it does have a problem our Maintenance Agreement customers get priority call out to resolve any system problems quickly, therefore limiting the impact on your business.

Preventive maintenance is always the best course of action with heating systems, and we strongly advice that systems are checked at the very least on an annual basis, and the Autumn is perfect time, preparing your business for the winter months. Protecting your capital investment and adhering to business continuity plans is important for most businesses, whether you have a relatively small office environment or a large industrial premises with a complex HVAC installation.

If you would like to talk to us about your HVAC systems in regards to replacement, servicing or preventive maintenance utilising our efficient maintenance agreements, contact us today!

Can your company benefit from the Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) Scheme?

What if we told you that you could install or upgrade HVAC and refrigeration equipment and offset 100% of the cost of those assets against your company’s taxable profits in a single tax year.

 

ECA coverWhat is the ECA Scheme & how does it work?

 

The ECA scheme, run by the Carbon Trust on behalf of the Government, allows businesses to invest in more efficient and energy saving plant or machinery that meets the specifications set out for qualifying equipment on the Energy Technology List (ETL).

Businesses can claim an ECA not only on the cost of qualifying equipment, but on the transportation of it to site and any direct installation costs.

ECAs (as with other capital allowances) are claimed in a business’s tax return and you will need to keep records of the purchase of any plant and machinery, including energy-saving equipment.

 

 

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Reducing future expense

 

Business owners are often tempted to purchase equipment with the lowest initial outlay which can prove a false economy in many cases. Choosing to install equipment covered under the ECA can provide a cash flow boost to company and therefore is an added incentive to invest in energy-efficient equipment which usually carries a price premium.

Upgrading to, or installing, qualifying plant and machinery will reduce your business’s future operating costs too with improved energy efficiency resulting in lower energy bills most importantly. It will also help to fulfil your company’s Corporate Social Responsibilities in reducing carbon emissions.

What technologies qualify?

 

The following technologies are specified in the ETL (please note that the list is regularly reviewed and qualifying technologies can be added or removed.

 Currently included are:

  • Air-to-air energy recovery.
  • Automatic monitoring and targeting (AMT) equipment.
  • Boiler equipment.
  • Combined heat and power (CHP).
  • Compressed air equipment.
  • Heat pumps.
  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment.
  • High speed hand air dryers.
  • Motors and drives.
  • Pipework insulation.
  • Radiant and warm air heaters.
  • Refrigeration equipment.
  • Solar thermal systems.
  • Uninterruptible power supplies.

This is great news for our customers that wish to install or upgrade equipment.

To talk to our team about whether your business can benefit from the scheme, please call us today on 01787 888659.

For more information on the ECA and qualifying technologies and equipment view the…

Carbon Trust’s document here

Acclaim Accreditation: The Health & Safety Assessment Scheme for Constructionline Members

Acclaim Accreditation is a new health and safety assessment scheme provided by Capita Property and Infrastructure, exclusive to Constructionline members. The scheme enables contractors, sub-contractors and material suppliers to get their health & safety processes assessed as a part of their Constructionline membership.

Acclaim Accreditation is a member of ‘Safety Schemes In Procurement’ (SSIP), which is an umbrella organisation for stage 1 health and safety assessment schemes. SSIP is recognised by a large and growing number of buyers within the construction industry. This gives us, as suppliers, the freedom to choose the scheme that suits us – eliminating the need to collect multiple accreditations to appease different buyers.
Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP) was developed to:

  • Act as an umbrella body, which is recognised by a large and growing number of buyers
  • Give confidence to buyers that we’ve been successfully assessed to the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 and SSIP core criteria
  • Reduce duplication

Summary of the benefits of this health and safety scheme

Simple

The Acclaim Accreditation questionnaire contains just twelve questions and doesn’t require us to duplicate any information already provided as part of our Constructionline membership.

Credible

Built on the principles of Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP), the Acclaim Accreditation assessment is undertaken by the experts at Capita Property and Infrastructure, who are a leading health and safety consultancy firm within construction. They even provide us with their assessor’s comments, assuring a fair and transparent assessment process for all.

Most importantly, by us having joined the Acclaim Accreditation scheme, you can rest assured that we have met stage one health and safety requirements.  Choosing Acclaim Accreditation also means that we are streamlining our processes and reducing unnecessary administration costs in applying for health and safety assessments through multiple agencies.

 

 

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Thermalair approved for Constructionline membership

We’re very excited to tell you that Thermalair have been awarded Constructionline membership which means we are now a certified member of the UK’s largest procurement and supply chain management service for the construction industry!

Constructionline has over 25,000 contractors, consultants and material suppliers that benefit from the scheme but the process to gain certification has involved a number of thorough and rigorous checks on our own processes and systems.  As certified members we can now prove to potential clients that we are fit to carry out any contract needing our services.

Our website, brochures, stationery and even our vans can now carry the logo as a mark of our accreditation and achievement!

Over 8,000 buyers from over 2,500 public and private sector buying organisations use Constructionline to find new suppliers. Our certification opens the door to these buyers who can now view our profile.

To learn more about Constructionline, visit their website.

If you would like to talk to our experienced team about your upcoming contract, please call us today on 01787 888659.

 

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Thermalair gains Ref-com Elite status

We are extremely proud to announce that Thermalair have been accredited with Ref-com Elite status.

This means Thermalair can demonstrate the very best practices in refrigeration management.

Being Ref-com Elite accredited means that we:

  • Can competently install, commission, de-commission and maintain systems containing refrigerant
  • We are a higher tier waste licence carriers
  • Handle refrigerants safely
  • Are fully compliant with all current legal duties
  • Operate auditable procedures for the proper control of refrigerants and can account for all refrigerants used and recovered
  • Use appropriate, purpose-designed refrigerant equipment
  • Perform refrigerant transactions with minimum emissions and are environmentally aware
  • Our company details are registered on the public database of Ref-com certificated businesses

To read more about our full range of refrigeration services, please visit our website. To speak to our experienced team about your refrigeration equipment or requirements, please call us on 01787 888659.

Tom-Davis

Thermalair Health Check – Tom gains some healthy results!

Tom Davis is a man on a mission. Having qualified recently with an NVQ in refrigeration and air conditioning, Tom has certainly proved his worth as a very important member of our team.

His recent excursion to a medical practice saw Tom’s slightly innovative methods, utilising a Stethoscope to find out how poorly the incumbent VRV system was. Slightly eccentric you might say, but we are very pleased for Tom, and his hard work and dedication has certainly paid off!

However, we do suspect the use of a Stethoscope wasn’t part of the NVQ course!

All of our engineers are qualified to NVQ standards and hold all relevant skills cards. They are also trained to install the most sophisticated air conditioning, heating and refrigeration systems, including Thermalair’s incumbent status as a Daikin D1 Partner & Installer.

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Daikin D1 Partner & Installer – What does it mean to our customers?

To demonstrate how important this is, is to firstly talk about the company. Daikin was established in Japan in 1924 and has an annual turnover of over £3 billion worldwide. Its research and development budget exceeds £100 million per year, which makes Daikin one of the largest manufacturers of air conditioning and heat pump equipment in the world. The company is also a manufacture of refrigerants, thus making it the only corporation that manufacture both air conditioning equipment and refrigerants. This puts Daikin in a unique position to apply international directives and anticipate refrigerant market trends and variations.

Daikin are undoubtedly the industry leaders in air conditioning and refrigeration systems. D1 partners are carefully selected by Daikin in the UK for their very high standards of design and expertise in the installation of systems. The D1 status recognises the necessary skillsets required to install the most advanced systems available from Daikin.

D1 status is only given to a select few of the UK’s air conditioning and refrigeration companies, those who are able to design systems for large retail, industrial and commercial environments. With an active ongoing communication with Daikin, a D1 supplier can advise customers on the many advantages available with Daikin systems, which can often lead to long-term savings and benefits to the customer.

So why should you choose Thermalair as a Daikin D1 partner?…

  • We are of course a long established partner of Daikin
  • Full design capability and advanced knowledge around the Daikin systems
  • Succinct and easy to understand proposals and quotations
  • Continuous training programmes with Daikin and their technology
  • We install, service and maintain systems, so provide a one stop shop for all your air-conditioning and refrigeration needs
  • Experience in the largest of retail, industrial and commercial environments, installing highly sophisticated systems, where business continuity is of the utmost importance
  • Recognised member of industry bodies and trade associations
  • Our engineers are fully DBS checked for works in more sensitive areas – Schools, Colleges, Nurseries and Care Facilities
  • D1 status means our customers get a 7-year warrantee as opposed to the standard five-year term with a non-D1 partner.

Very often a high level tiered partner status can be seen as relatively insignificant, but in the case of a Daikin D1 supplier, this has many benefits to the customer, providing absolute assurance that all of our projects will be completed to a 1st class professional standard. Not forgetting the extended guarantee period of seven years.