Company office spaces have rapidly changed in recent years. Many businesses are moving away from perimeter offices to open-office plans. These plans provide more natural light, collaborative workstations, open lounge space, and fitness centers that help keep up with modern employees. As office designs change, HVAC system design plans should also take these changes into consideration to boost employee productivity and comfort.
Whether you are replacing an old HVAC unit on an existing commercial property or building on your property, you need to plan for the design of your cooling and heating systems. That’s because your HVAC design can break or make your building’s air quality and indoor comfort. It can also affect other aspects such as operational costs, energy efficiency, and the productivity of your tenants and employees. Below are some useful tips on creating a suitable HVAC system design that’ll provide your employees with a comfortable working environment throughout the year.
1. Consider the Building’s Layout
Some of the most important elements to consider when installing a commercial HVAC system are the layout and architecture of your building. These features will provide you with some clues on the HVAC system design type that’ll work best in every part of the building. Furthermore, you need to know the amount of space available for ductwork installation, the materials the structure is made of, the building’s ventilation, and the amount of natural light every space gets.
Whether you are renovating an old building or moving to a new company building, you have to make adjustments to ensure that the cooling and heating systems fit well. For example, you can add more windows in the available space to increase the amount of natural light in the building. Some simple adjustments can also maximize the heat entering your company space to help you lower heating costs during the cold season.
Understanding the makeup of your company building and other important features within it will help you design a more efficient HVAC system.
2. Size Your HVAC Correctly
The other thing you need to consider when installing a commercial HVAC system is the size of the HVAC unit. HVAC companies always stress the significance of correct sizing when installing cooling and heating systems in both commercial and residential properties. When calculating loads for an HVAC system design, your HVAC service should consider all the energy efficiency features you need to avoid installing an undersized or oversized unit.
An undersized system will not provide enough air conditioning or heating throughout the company building. An oversized system, on the other hand, will keep cycling off and on. The unit will never run long enough to eliminate humidity, creating inconsistent temperatures in your space. Short cycling will also reduce your HVAC’s efficiency and shorten its lifespan.
The design team can consult with your HVAC expert early during the design planning to ensure project success. Apart from determining the square footage of the space, you need to accurately calculate your load requirements to size an HVAC system correctly. These professionals can use computer simulation tools to determine the building materials used, space activity patterns, and lighting designs that impact cooling and heating loads.
3. Create Multiple Zones
Your space needs several zones that are independently controlled to achieve energy efficiency and provide maximum comfort. Creating individual zones will help you meet the unique needs of different parts and maintain constant comfort throughout your building. For instance, spaces with computers and other sensitive equipment will require specialized temperature control. Also, conference spaces and other similar rooms where large meetings occur should remain warmer when unoccupied and cool when in use. Lastly, it would be best if you controlled rooms around the building’s perimeter individually. That’s because the outdoor weather more impacts these spaces than interior rooms.
Therefore, it is important to have an HVAC system expert in your design plans since it’s quite challenging to zone a structure with traditional walls properly. A reliable HVAC service can help you design these zones and install every system properly.
4. Integrate Sensors
Sensor technology is gaining popularity among homeowners and commercial property owners. When integrated with a good HVAC system design, sensors can help you save energy. The best sensors that you can utilize in your commercial HVAC design are light and occupancy sensors.
Light sensors can easily control the lighting in a certain space and also adjust the lighting if necessary. You can also tie light sensors to your HVAC design to control the cooling function and temperature accordingly. On the other hand, Occupancy sensors can detect the number of people using a room at any time and send relevant messages to the HVAC controls. These sensors, for instance, can detect when there is a big meeting in the building and automatically increase the cooling in the space.
5. Reduce Energy Usage
According to statistics, HVAC units utilize more energy than any other appliance in commercial properties. Therefore, you need to come up with ways of reducing your system’s heating and cooling loads. You can reduce your heating loads during the cold seasons by taking advantage of natural light. Providing better insulation in your walls and installing some tinted glass windows will also help reduce cooling loads during the warmer months. Reducing the amount of energy your HVAC unit utilizes will drastically lower your energy expenditure in the long term.
6. Consider the Building’s Ventilation
Ventilation is an important element of a commercial HVAC design that you shouldn’t ignore as a facility or property owner. A good HVAC design should provide for enough intake and supply of outside air in your space. It also needs to easily and properly control the circulation of conditioned air. Therefore, you need the expertise of an HVAC design specialist to get everything right and avoid mistakes that will be costly to fix. These professionals will also ensure that the HVAC system is designed to remove contaminants, dust, bacteria, humidity, and unwanted odors from your indoor spaces. Besides, maintaining proper indoor air quality levels is vital for your employees’ general well-being and productivity.
7. Under Floor Air Supply
Most traditional buildings utilize overhead air distribution for cooling purposes. But nowadays, many commercial facilities are built with high ceilings, making overhead air distribution less energy-efficient and less effective. To solve this problem, many open-plan offices are considering under-floor air supply systems. These systems utilize diffusers installed beneath raised floors to circulate conditioned air to various parts within your office space. Under-floor air supply systems benefit from different stratification techniques that push warm air toward the building’s ceiling. These systems are perfect for maintaining air quality indoors and offering constant comfort levels.
Partner With the Best HVAC Professionals
When creating a plan for a new office or renovating an existing one, you need an HVAC system design that can offer comfort for your employees and energy efficiency. If you are a commercial property owner and are looking for reliable professionals to help you design your building’s HVAC system, contact Beyer Mechanical today. Our air conditioning and heating specialists understand the complexity of big commercial projects and create the most suitable HVAC system design to suit your unique needs.
Apart from HVAC services, our company also offers project starts, system installations, remodels, and in-house engineering and design builds services to the residents of San Antonio, TX. Call our friendly representatives today to learn more about HVAC system designs or the other services we offer.