The Importance of Duct Cleaning for Indoor Air Quality

This winter could break temperature and snowfall records across the country. For most of us, staying inside is the only defense. Avoiding the outdoors may keep us safe from dangerous weather, but we face another danger from the inside. The air quality inside a building begins to worsen when there are less fresh outdoor air and an increase in people and animals. Poor air quality is not only uncomfortable but can be bad for your health.

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Facility Manager Talent Gap Brings New Initiatives in 2018

The facility management field will continue to grow in 2018 while the talent pool shrinks. Historically there has been no linear path to a career as a facility manager. Generally, experienced trade professionals are promoted to facility management based on knowledge and experience. But now as many seasoned facility managers hit retirement age and building management becomes more automated, fewer knowledgeable and experienced candidates can fill the growing number of facility management positions.

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Our Best Stories for 2017 and 2018 Industry Predictions

Here at Goodway we want to wish all of our customers a Happy New Year! 2017 was a great year and we predict that 2018 will be even better as we continue to bring you more quality products and content relevant to HVAC maintenance, power generation, and food and beverage processing to improve the efficiency and productivity of your business. For over 50 years we’ve been providing innovative maintenance solutions for our customers, leveraging direct access to customers and an onsite engineering department-giving us the ability to listen to customer feedback and make those requests a reality.

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Disneyland Legionnaires Cases Raise Cooling Tower Preventative Maintenance Questions

Recent legionnaires news at Disneyland is the latest reminder that this public safety and HVAC maintenance issue isn’t going away anytime soon. As mentioned in previous posts, Legionnaires’ disease is a serious and sometimes fatal disease that affects the lungs as a severe strain of pneumonia. It can be contracted through poorly treated or untreated potable or nonpotable water and grows well in warm conditions.

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How Facility Managers Can Comply with Energy Benchmarking Laws

Energy and water conservation have become an industry focus. One reason is energy benchmarking laws that regulate a building’s traditional energy usage and incentivizes for using renewable sources.

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Hurricane Floodwaters Now Mold Breeding Grounds at Many Facilities

Although the initial cleanup from hurricane rain and floodwaters is nearly finished, facility managers in the south have an ensuing issue to now consider – indoor air quality (IAQ).

Standing water and wet materials are breeding grounds for fast-growing microorganisms such as mold and bacteria. Failing to remove contaminated materials and reduce moisture and humidity may present serious long-term costs for facility managers and health risks to building occupants.

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HVAC System Repair and Maintenance Crucial after Hurricane Flooding  

For the first time in recorded history, the U.S. was slammed with back-to-back Category 4 hurricanes — Harvey and Irma — from the Atlantic. Many people in Texas and Florida continue to battle and hopefully recover from flooded streets, scattered debris, damaged homes, and inoperable buildings. The economic costs associated with this tag team of natural disasters in the U.S. are expected to be $290 billion.  

Mold and HVAC Systems

Part of that recovery process will be to assess the extent of the water damage. In the hot and humid climates of Texas and Florida mold growth is the biggest concern.

Mold and mildew pose real threats to flooded buildings. The stagnant standing water presents the perfect environment for bacteria growth, making any porous materials susceptible.

Typically, mold grows on floors and walls, but flooded HVAC systems can also pose a real health threat if mold is allowed to grow. Ductwork and insulation that has mold growth can pose a health threat to the entire building if the HVAC system is running because mold spores can be carried through ducts and distributed throughout the building.

HVAC System Cleaning

Proper cleaning of HVAC systems after a flood is imperative to the health of building occupants. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that you remove all flood-contaminated insulation and materials associated with the HVAC system and discard them.

Then you should clean the interior of the flooded system with a HEPA vacuum to remove the dirt and debris as well as microorganisms that typical industrial vacuums may not be able to pick up. After the HVAC system is cleaned it also needs to be thoroughly disinfected to prevent the growth of bacteria and microorganisms.

The aftermaths of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma will likely be felt for years while communities work to clean up and rebuild their homes and businesses. Prioritizing HVAC system cleaning is imperative to protect the health of building occupants during this time. Using a good HEPA vacuum to get rid of spores and a mold controlling cleaner are good ways to stop bacteria from growing and recurring.

Check out these other resources for information on HVAC mold prevention and cleaning:

  1. Effective Industrial Mold Control: A Three Step Process
  2. Controlling Mold: An HVAC Professional’s Guide
  3. How to Rid Your AC of Mold
  4. Mold Clean Up After Floods
  5. How to Protect an HVAC Unit from Flood Water

Why Facility Managers Should Invest in HVAC Engineers and Technicians

In an effort to lower operational expenses and create environmentally friendly systems, more and more facility managers are investing in smart building technology’s potential.  Such an investment strategy will likely pay off since HVAC systems account for approximately 40 percent of a facility’s primary energy consumption.

Potential Impact

Wasted energy can cost between $1,000 and $3,700 per HVAC unit if your facility’s inventory (commercial air conditioners, heat pumps, and warm-air furnaces, etc.) includes units that are over 10 years old or use R22 refrigerant. So 20-30% efficiency gains are quite possible by retrofitting or replacing older, degraded equipment and investing in smart building technology.

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A Facility Manager’s Guide to Maintaining, Retrofitting and Replacing RTUs

As a facility manager, you’re likely aware the Department of Energy’s energy standards for rooftop units begin in 2018 and increase in 2023. But did you also know wasted energy can cost between $1,000 and $3,700 per unit if your facility’s RTU inventory (commercial air conditioners, heat pumps, and warm-air furnaces ) includes units that are over 10 years old, use R22 refrigerant, or have had little to no preventive maintenance? In other words, those old and inefficient RTUs are costing you and that doesn’t even include costly repairs and downtime.

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How Facility Technicians Can Prevent Evaporator Coil Corrosion Without Damaging AC Coils

It feels like summer has arrived in some regions and the last thing you want is your HVAC system to fail when a heat wave arrives. Detecting a drop in HVAC performance is often the only warning you’ll get that something is about to go wrong. But with dirty coils putting an unnecessary load on the system these warning signs can be hidden.

If you read our previous post, you already know that cleaning your facility’s HVAC coils can save up to 30% in power consumption, reduce wear and tear and improve IAQ by eliminating mold. But did you know that delaying the job can make the task harder and risk evaporator coil corrosion?

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