Robert BakerRobert Baker

Managing Director

BBJ Consulting Service



2015 HVAC Trends:

  1. HVAC and Disease Transmission
    A huge topic in news during the past several months is the ongoing Ebola outbreak in certain African nations and Americans who have become infected and brought back to the United States for treatment. These events have caused many health care facilities to re-evaluate their infection control practices and support systems. Interestingly, ASHRAE had already began what is planned as a multi stage project to investigate the role of HVAC systems in the transmission of disease (Research Project 1603). Just the first phase of this project was funded at a half million dollars and preliminary results should be available during 2015. Based on early information, this is likely to show that very little is known about how significant HVAC and air movement are in spreading disease so a lot more research is needed. When the initial report is released, there is sure to be a lot of discussion about the next steps.
  2. Increased Energy Efficiency
    Increasing energy efficiency of HVAC systems has been an important priority for several years as heating and cooling can account for nearly half of the energy used in buildings. As important as better energy efficiency is, there has been a change of focus that started as new gas and oil recovery methods came on line. During 2014, energy costs as well as the position of North America in terms of energy independence have become more favorable. In 2015, many will re-evaluate their priorities relative to energy issues. For example, the Florida Public Utility Commission recently accepted utility recommendations to discontinue certain rebates and energy saving incentives because the incentives are more costly than building and operating new generating capacity. Others may follow; which will have a huge impact on the industry.
  3. Construction Will Continue To Recover
    As the economy finally started to come out of the recession during 2014, many construction projects that had been on hold are being started up again as well as new construction planned. An interesting part of this will be a possible new perspective on Residential HVAC. After a yearlong study of its role in Residential HVAC, ASHRAE announced a new emphasis on Residential. That will take form as 2015 progresses.
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