Cloudfm to offer 10-year warranty on Mitsubishi Electric equipment

In yet another first for the facilities management provider, Cloudfm has announced that it is now able to offer a 10-year warranty on all Mitsubishi Electric equipment managed on behalf of its clients.

The move comes after the company was awarded BSP (Business Solutions Partner) status with the manufacturer which enables it to offer an extended 7-year warranty. Cloudfm will underwrite a further 3-year warranty on all new equipment and parts for Mitsubishi Electric air conditioning products in the UK.

Cloudfm’s client base includes some of the best known retail and restaurant brands, such as KFC, Pizza Express, ASK, Zizzi, Wolseley, Warehouse, Karen Millen, Coast and Oasis, so this initiative is ideally targeted to add value. A key driver in developing the warranty was to help clients achieve better value from their total spend on air conditioning, which can represent a significant portion of the FM budget. CEO of Cloudfm, Jeff Dewing explained:

“At Cloudfm we already track the warranties on parts and labour associated with air conditioning, but this new offering takes our process to a whole new level. Through improved traceability, accountability and standardisation, our clients will achieve a far better return on investment over the lifetime of each installation.”

Equipment eligible for the 10-year warranty will be asset tagged at the factory and can then only be installed, maintained and repaired by Cloudfm-approved engineers who hold a Mitsubishi Electric training certificate(s).

“Cloudfm has built its reputation on delivering the best possible service to its customers and this total commitment to excellence matches the quality of delivery that we as a manufacturer expect”, commented Deane Flint, Sales Director for Mitsubishi Electric.

“The promise to add this extension to the warranty reinforces that approach and is also a clear demonstration of Cloudfm’s ability to ensure that our products deliver maximum performance for customers throughout their working life.”

The resilience of Cloudfm’s innovative approach is based on:

  • Proactive monthly visits to clients, enabling a preventative air conditioning maintenance regime, completed by highly qualified engineers
  • Full visibility of every engineer across the supply chain who works on the equipment, including compliance, warranty and reactive repair work
  • The unique use of QR code technology to monitor all activity on site, combined with an integrated asset management system to track all equipment, parts and labour throughout the lifetime of the installation

To find our more visit cloudfmgroup.com

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Windhager helps company to reduce carbon footprint with large biomass installation

Windhager has recently supplied a 720kW biomass heating system to a global manufacturer of process plant equipment, based in the UK.
Charles Thompson Ltd. has installed three Windhager BioCABINS, each holding a 240kW BioWIN Excel Kaskade biomass system, at its headquarters in Rotherham.

The new biomass system, installed by PC Kelly Plumbing & Heating, was chosen by the company to provide a sustainable, carbon neutral solution to heating the headquarters’ offices and factory whilst considerably reducing the cost to heat the large premises. The installation also helps the company to reduce its carbon footprint and achieve its environmental objectives.

Windhager’s BioCABIN provides a comprehensive option for sustainably heating large commercial properties, using an off-site manufactured plant room. BioCABINs are designed to provide a bespoke solution for each individual application and is created using a modular cascade system of Windhager’s established BioWIN Excel biomass boilers, as well as an integrated wood pellet fuel storage hopper to keep everything needed to operate the system under one roof. The unit is delivered to site fully equipped and ready to be connected to the mains heating supply for a quick and easy installation to reduce the overall time of an application.

Further information is available from Windhager UK on 01225 892211 email: info@windhager.co.uk or by visiting the company’s website at www.windhager.co.uk

Windhager UK is supported by Vantage PR

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Good things come in small packages

It is often said that the best things come in small packages, and nowhere is that more true than in the installation of combined heat and power (CHP). In fact, the most successful CHP installations in the UK have been kept purposefully small. Gary Stoddart, general manager at SenerTec, explains why.

As facilities managers will know, the heating and hot water systems in a commercial building is responsible for the lion’s share of both carbon emissions and energy use, and a large proportion of costs out of the business. However, with a recent report highlighting that average total carbon emissions are 3.8 times higher than those estimated at design stage, it’s clear that the ongoing battle to match up a building’s predicted and actual energy use has to be won if we are to reduce emissions in line with the government’s ambitious carbon targets.

The key for heating and hot water systems largely lies within sizing correctly for each and every application, and CHP is no exception.

CHP can help to achieve carbon reduction either as part of a standalone heating system, or as part of a heat network. It delivers savings in two ways – by producing electricity using natural gas rather than purchasing electricity from the grid, and through the generation of heat.

In comparison to electricity from the grid, CHP electricity doesn’t suffer transmission losses, and costs three or four times less. At the same time, where the ‘waste’ heat from the generation process is lost at gas power stations, the heat generated by CHP can be reused in the heating/hot water systems – normally most effective when CHP is designated as the lead heat source. Overall, it means CHP can be approximately 30 per cent more efficient than traditional electricity.

But in order to achieve the predicted savings, it is essential to first consider whether CHP is appropriate for the building in question, has been specified and installed correctly, and used as intended.

A major consideration for building and facilities managers is the need to rely on the heating/hot water system’s ability to continue to run efficiently, even when demand is low. Because oversized CHP units will not run if the heat demand is not present, and as a result the anticipated electricity will not be generated, this is a particularly important issue for CHP.

Unfortunately, incorrect specification of CHP is all too common. In many cases, the ‘10 per cent for luck’ rule is applied, meaning that many buildings have larger plant than required. The equipment is of course more expensive in the first place, but in addition will not operate efficiently, leading to higher operational costs.

The golden rule for CHP is to keep it as small as possible. Sizing the system so that the base load heating and hot water requirements can be met largely by the CHP unit alone will result in the continuous generation of low cost, low carbon electricity as a by-product of producing base load heating.

According to Building Regulations, CHP must be sized to provide ‘not less than 45 per cent of the annual total heating demand’, which includes space heating and domestic hot water. This is critical for CHP as oversizing for summertime loads can result in either non-operation of the CHP or the heat produced being ‘dumped’ in order to continue generating electricity.

To ensure the CHP runs continually throughout the summer months the hot water requirement should be the initial target for CHP sizing. Here, the risk is that 45 per cent of the total annual heating demand is mistaken for 45 per cent of the central heating load, which is not the case as the hot water loading is all year round and con be a significant part of the annual fuel usage.

Building managers also need to know that the system can react swiftly, accurately and efficiently to changes in heating demand. Cascades are rapidly emerging as an ideal way to deliver these performance benefits, as they can respond rapidly to changes in usage patterns, and extend the operating life and reliability of the equipment.

What’s more, a cascade of CHP units offers end users the option of shutting down parts of the system when there’s a fall in demand or maintenance required, meaning that the remaining units can continue to run at full capacity and maximum efficiency – unlike modulating CHP units.

The best way to ensure that CHP works as intended is for all parties to work together at the early stages of a project. It is also important for the CHP supplier to stay involved with the project after commissioning, to ensure that the system continues to perform and deliver savings. SenerTec offers a range of maintenance and monitoring solutions, meaning we can work with the building operator to ensure the system runs efficiently.

With increasing take-up of CHP technology across commercial building stock and its potential as a low carbon technology to help realise emission targets, it is vital that facilities managers are up-to-date with the latest guidance on how a system should be sized if they are to guard against ill-fitting solutions and costly malpractice.

For more information visit www.senertec.co.uk

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Herschel Far infrared cuts family’s heating bill

Living in a house dating from 1350 heated by storage and plug-in electric heaters, Rebecca and Richard Collis were struggling to keep themselves and their new baby warm. With spiralling energy bills, they decided to install Herschel Far infrared heaters throughout their home and are now not only warm but have cut their monthly electricity bill from £153 to £40.

Rebecca and Richard’s house in north Somerset is a large thatched property which has been divided to create four homes and is the oldest in the village. The couple were keen to find a solution that was efficient, did not spoil the look of their home and would be safe for their son who is now one. When Rebecca discovered Herschel’s website, she used the wattage calculator to work out what she would need and, realising that infrared heaters might provide the answer, arranged a visit to the company’s nearby Bristol office.

The team at Herschel explained the products in detail, helped confirm Rebecca’s calculations and, because of the age of the property, visited to check the details. In all, six infrared heaters were ordered with Herschel Inspire mirror heaters in the kitchen, dining room and bathroom and white Herschel Select XL panel heaters in the two bedrooms and playroom. These were installed by a professional electrician.

Each of the heaters is on a different zone, controlled via the Herschel iQ system from an app that the couple have on their smart phones (http://www.herschel-infrared.com/heater-fundamentals/zoning-control/). This wireless system saved running cables and drilling holes in walls and provides very accurate control. Before the installation of the Herschel system, the temperature in the house was sometimes as low as 11ºC. Now, if it drops below 18ºC, the thermostats automatically turn the relevant heaters on.

There has also been a noticeable reduction in the amount of condensation within the property and a significant improvement in the smell of damp.

Rebecca comments: “I wish I’d known about Herschel sooner. They were very professional and the infrared heaters have been the finishing touch to make our house feel like a home. The heaters are stylish, easy to use and fit in perfectly with our period property. Guests just can’t believe our mirrors are our heating! I’ve already recommended them to other people.”

For further information, please call 01473 760 059 or visit www.herschel-infrared.com.

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Drayton miGenie receives great reviews

Heating controls specialist Drayton has received positive feedback from early adopters of its new miGenie range of internet connected heating controls.

The collection of control packs – known as miGenie Wishes – utilise smart technology, enabled by an intuitive app that users download onto an iOS or Android smartphone, tablet or Apple Watch. This allows homeowners to regulate their heating and hot water from anywhere, at any time, using the app.

Followers of the @DraytonHeating Twitter channel commented:

“All good so far. Easy install and set up.”

“Loving my trial #miGenie, got 2 customers waiting.”

“Installed the @DraytonHeating #miGenie #Wish1 in my own house. Works very well and is very easy to install & set up.”

 Online reviewers commented:

“Very happy with the miGenie. It is definitely an improvement from our last one and will recommend it without hesitation.”

“Great app and simple to set the system and use. I can choose to turn the heating on from my phone early in the morning when I’m lying in bed if it feels cold or if I’m arriving home earlier than expected.”

“So simple to use, brilliant.”

“I was lucky enough to have an existing Drayton Programmer controlling my heating system, so swapping in the new miGenie was very easy, just removing the old unit from the backplate and attaching the new.”

“It is super easy to use…My heating has joined the 21st century at last.”

Catherine Connolly, Managing Director of Drayton, added: “It’s fantastic to get such great feedback from people using miGenie in their own homes. We designed miGenie to be smart yet simple for the installer and homeowner, and users are finding it really easy to download the app and start controlling their heating using a smartphone, tablet or Apple Watch.”

For more information about miGenie and Drayton’s range of products, visit http://www.draytoncontrols.co.uk or call 0845 130 7722.

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Looking to Control the Temperature of Your Lobby?

With a Boon Edam Heater it’s a Breeze!

During periods of cold and windy weather, why allow the temperature in your lobby to drop? Just because it is chilly outside, doesn’t mean your reception area should be cold too.

The revolving door has become a significant choice for many architects and facilities managers due to the way they naturally help to keep out draughts and reduce energy loss within a building.

The cost saving decision to install a revolving door not only reduces your monthly energy bills but it is also more eco-friendly for the environment due to the reduced amount of hot air that leaves the building with every door rotation.

Still feeling the cold? Why not consider adding a Boon Edam heater onto your door?

On occasions when the weather is windy, cold air can sometimes become trapped within the seperate compartments of a revolving door and subsequently forced into an internal area, normally the reception area. By combining a Boon Edam heater with a revolving door system this cold air is negated and prevented from entering the building.

When installed, the main body of the heater unit is strategically mounted above the revolving door and using curved air outlets, creates a warm barrier around the inner opening of the doorway which counteracts any cold air infiltrating through the door.

With the option to add a Boon Edam heater either from new or as a retrofit, we can ensure that your lobby area is kept at a comfortable climate at all times whilst not impacting on the aesthetics of your entry point.

Not sure which heater to choose? At Boon Edam, we understand that our clients’ needs are as varied as they are which is why each of our heaters are created to match the curvature of each specific revolving door type. We are proud to offer a range of air curtains which can be made bespoke for all commercial, corporate or industrial requirements.

For more details on the heating solutions offered by Boon Edam, please contact the Repairs and Retrofits team on 01233 505 900 or by emailing repairs@boonedam.co.uk

 

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Stokvis discusses the best gas-fired air heaters for large open spaces

The fully CE-approved, Stokvis Econo-Air range of gas fired air heaters encompasses both direct fired (SDF) and indirect fired (SIDF) models

The newest breed of gas-fired air heaters is designed for large open spaces such as factories, warehouses, sports halls, conference centres, exhibition halls, arenas and swimming pools. Features include fully-modulating burners which boast accurate temperature control and high efficiency, minimal or no ductwork requirement, pressurisation of space to ensure a clean atmosphere, ventilation/cooling during summer months and flexible installation options. In order to achieve the best solution for any large open space environment, careful consideration must be given to a variety of factors. After all, two spaces of identical size and shape can present very different characteristics and requirements.

Compare, for instance, an industrial warehouse where the majority of the activity involves semi-automatic fork-lifts, with an exhibition space. Factors such as occupancy and lighting levels, as well as the size and usage of the entranceways could not be more different. The specifier needs to calculate the heat load for the building accurately as well as model the circulation in what is likely to be a very tall space. Furthermore, the requirements for ventilation, and the replacement of that air, must also be considered.

Many modern factories and warehouses feature composite steel cladding panels where the insulated core cuts heat loss through the envelope to a good degree, yet warmth will still be lost through ventilation. Where extraction is part of the production process – if dust is generated or fume cupboards have to be employed – this effect will be greatly pronounced. A supply of heated replacement air is therefore required to maintain comfort levels. If it is not, the extraction system will perform inefficiently and a negative pressure may be created. This could lead to cold air being drawn in through leakage around the envelope.

For new installations, the supply of heated make up air can often provide adequate ventilation, without the need to install additional extract units. However, where additional extraction is deemed necessary, this can be integrated into the same unit to facilitate both input and exhaust flows; with the option of mechanical heat recovery from the exhaust side. The latest gas-fired air heaters can meet these combined demands economically, featuring efficiencies of 100% (based on NCV) thanks to fully modulating burners and effective intelligent controls.

The fully CE-approved, Stokvis Econo-Air range of gas fired air heaters encompasses both direct fired (SDF) and indirect fired (SIDF) models which are able to achieve these multiple objectives. A turn-down ratio of 20:1 guarantees flexible response, while output rises from 15-900 Kw for the indirect units, and 30-1200 Kw with the direct firing options.  There is also a comprehensive selection of accessories available, enabling the installation to be customised to the different requirements of the building concerned.

When heating large open areas, it is ideal to have a wide range of air distribution heads available in order to facilitate ductless distribution. This is achieved by slightly pressurising the internal space to ensure even distribution both vertically and horizontally. This avoids the need for extensive duct runs or de-stratification fans. Where the building geometry does, however, demand ductwork, then Econo-Air units can be supplied with backward or forward curved fans to overcome resistance within the runs of up to 2000 Pascals.

For further information on Stokvis gas-fired air heaters call 020 8783 3050, or visit www.stokvisboilers.com.

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Weatherite – Thinking inside the box

‘AirBox’ from Weatherite Air Conditioning Ltd is their latest air containment solution – providing an energy-efficient addition to Data Centre airflow management.

Based on years of expertise gained in providing cooling solutions for some of the most demanding blue-chip clients within the IT critical sector, AirBox provides an effective way to help control airflow within data centres, server rooms and comms rooms.

AirBox is a made-to-measure containment system that can be retro-fitted to accommodate an existing building arrangement or designed as an integral part of a brand-new installation and will help achieve the most energy-efficient solution for both hot and cold aisle configurations.

As Pat Gillan, Weatherite’s Data Centre Sales Manager commented: “ Offering our Airbox air containment solution complements our existing range of data centre cooling capabilities- offering the client a complete ‘one-stop-shop’ solution- delivering massive energy savings and high efficiecy operation”.

AirBox is the latest addition to a range of datacentre cooling solutions from Weatherite which also includes CRAC direct replacement, direct free cooling, indirect adiabatic and in-row cooling solutions.

Weatherite Aluminium Solutions Ltd has been delivering precision cooling for IT critical environments for over 30 years and is part of the Weatherite Group of Companies, one of the UK’s leading HVAC equipment providers.

www.weatheritegroup.com

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Humidity matters at Jersey Air Traffic Control

Jersey Air Traffic Control has recently installed four Condair steam humidifiers at its centre in Jersey Airport, which is responsible for the coordination of air traffic in the busy skies above the Channel Islands. Air traffic control is a demanding role, with aircraft and passenger safety its primary goal, and the humidifiers help provide a comfortable and productive environment for air traffic controllers and engineering staff by combatting the visual discomfort created by dry air.

The Channel Islands are popular destinations for commercial airlines and private aircraft pilots alike, and high volumes of air traffic pass through its air space. In 2014, there were over 100,000 aircraft departures and arrivals at the three airports of Jersey, Guernsey and Alderney, and almost 2.5M travellers passed in and out of them. The Condair humidifiers serve the iconic Control Tower, which controls the flight arrivals and departures from Jersey Airport itself, and areas in the air Traffic Control Centre, both of which were built in 2010 to accommodate the increasing attraction of flying to and from the islands.

Air traffic control in the Channel Islands is a highly responsible role. It has a high visual and mental workload, using purpose-designed interactive screens as essential tools, frequent interaction with aircrew and important decisions being made. Shift work, early starts and late finishes can also have an effect. Les Smallwood, Senior Air Traffic Control Officer at the centre, explains, “The human element is important. In a job where errors could be critical, an environment that is comfortable and considers people’s well-being also supports their working needs. The humidifiers are a part of this.”

The need for humidification first became apparent amongst staff wearing contact lenses. Les Smallwood continues, “We use air conditioning to maintain an environment of 21°C but this was drying the air. People’s eyes were becoming uncomfortable, especially for those wearing contact lenses. We used mobile humidifiers at first, to prove the point, before investing in a permanent solution with the Condair humidifiers”. Les confirms that air traffic control staff and the airport’s building services team are pleased with the results.

The largest capacity humidifier, a 30kg/h resistive steam humidifier, supplies the air handling system for the first floor of the Air Traffic Control Centre, which includes air traffic control offices and rest areas, to maintain around 50%RH. Three Condair CP3 Mini in-room humidifiers are used to do the same in the Control Tower itself and in the Air Traffic Engineering offices, whose staff are responsible for the good operation of radar, navaids, electronic equipment and associated services.

Condair resistive steam humidifiers feature a unique scale collection tank for easy and straightforward maintenance. The Condair CP3 Mini units are compact and discreetly-designed electrode boiler humidifiers, wall-mounted in the areas concerned to deliver up to 4kg/h of pure steam directly into the space. Routine maintenance is quick and kept simple by the easily exchanged boiling cylinders.

Jersey Health and Safety Inspectorate’s Display Screen Equipment at Work ACoP, confirms the importance of maintaining of a level of relative humidity that is adequate to prevent the discomfort and sore eyes that are characteristically associated with dry air, as part of an ergonomically-optimised working environment. This echoes the same guidance given in the UK Health & Safety Executive’s DSE ACoP and other European directives.

Dry air can be caused by air conditioning and also arises during cooler winter months when indoor relative humidity drops as it is heated. Even in a mild and agreeable climate like Jersey’s, it can be a particular problem for computer screen users, as the air around a screen can be drier and more prone to electrostatic effects than its surroundings, due to the increased temperature locally. Humidifiers effectively address these issues.

Maintaining a relative humidity of 40-60% has also been shown to reduce susceptibility to infection by preventing the drying of the moist lining of the mouth, throat and nose, and airborne viruses have been shown to survive for a shorter time at this level. Conveniently, the level of relative humidity that suits people’s health also provides the ideal environment for IT systems and electronic equipment.

Condair group is the world’s leading specialist in humidification and evaporative cooling, with energy efficient, hygienic and innovative technologies for commercial, industrial and heritage applications. Condair is represented in the UK by Condair plc, which offers humidification system design, manufacture, supply, installation, commissioning, maintenance and spares. Condair plc is the new name for JS Humidifiers following the organisation’s rebranding in October 2014. You can find out more by visiting the company’s website at www.condair.co.uk.

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How much did HVAC actually cost you last year?

HVAC systems can devour more electricity than anything else in commercial premises, but how can you measure and control these costs?

The single biggest consumer of energy in a typical UK commercial building is the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system.

Over an average year, the air con system alone could guzzle more electricity than a building’s annual heating bill, all the PCs and office equipment combined, or two or three times the amount of energy used by the building’s entire lighting system.

Fortunately, help is at hand through a revolutionary new intelligent manifold that produces instant reports on exactly how energy efficient the air conditioning system is.

Setting out the scale of the problem to be tackled, Stephen Matthews, Chief Executive of CIBSE (the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers) explains: “Air conditioning systems can use as much as 30% of the electrical demand of a building, so a poorly performing system will be wasting a large amount of energy.”

That’s why for service and building managers, keeping air conditioning equipment serviced and maintained to run at peak efficiency is one of the easiest ways to:

  • Significantly reduce a building’s overall energy usage
  • Enhance your corporate reputation by lowering your carbon footprint
  • Make major gains in your energy efficiency
  • Reduce costs associated with breakdowns, callouts and unplanned maintenance

Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES)

To compound the problem, with changes on the horizon for Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs), air con efficiency (which represents by far the biggest slice of the energy usage pie) will come under increasing scrutiny.

An EPC is a legal document which details a building’s energy efficiency rating from A (very efficient) to G (inefficient). Changes involving EPCs are coming as part of a new law; the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES), which as of 1 April 2018 will require rented commercial premises to have a rating of at least an E.

Buildings currently rated with an F or G will need to improve efficiency in order to comply, and estimates suggest approximately a fifth of UK business properties could be in the F & G rating brackets.

Monitoring air con energy efficiency

One of the simplest ways for managers to check air con efficiency over time is to insist that service engineers are using the right equipment to provide this information.

While most digital gauges currently used by A/C service engineers don’t have this facility, one example that does is the Imperial iManifold, the first of a new breed of “intelligent” digital manifolds, from the US, that has won awards on both sides of the Atlantic.

Unlike any other manifold on the market today, the iManifold calculates a system’s capacity, evaporator performance, system electrical efficiency, dehumidification, etc. during a routine air con service.

From these calculations, the iManifold can produce a range of technical reports on a system’s efficiency and performance, including instant measurements of the EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio) of an air con system using dynamic, live system data.

The EER is a ratio calculated by dividing the cooling capacity of a system in Btus per hour, by the power input in watts, expressed in Btu/hr per watt.

This information can even be plotted on live graphs in the field, and detailed reports can be immediately emailed to building managers as a permanent record of an A/C system’s energy efficiency at a particular moment in time and stored in the cloud for future reference.

More importantly, because this data is precise and the measurement is instantly repeatable, these reports can be compared over time, allowing supervisors and managers to spot trends throughout the year or over much longer periods, giving them all the information they need to monitor and control the efficiency of their air conditioning system forever.

Distributed exclusively in the UK by Advanced Engineering, this year the iManifold won the RAC Cooling Industry Awards’ Innovation of the Year Award and two Product of the Year Awards, one at the ACR News Awards and another at the National ACR Awards.

For more information on how the Imperial iManifold can keep track of air con energy efficiency, cut service times and improve the way your service engineers work, visit the Advanced Engineering website at www.advancedengineering.co.uk.

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