Elements of the TM44 Air Conditioning Inspection Report Part 2

In this article, we look at other elements, which are included in our report from the air conditioning inspections. The aim of the Air Conditioning Inspection Report is to outline any areas within the operation of all HVAC equipment that would improve in performance and reduce energy costs. We try to look at the introduction of any no-cost/low-cost initiatives and any capital investment opportunities that may arise.

The survey covers the inspection of air conditioning systems, measuring the performance and power of fans, and associated cooling electrical load, comparing performance with industry standards to identify energy savings whilst maintaining their minimum performance requirements.

A number of other observations are made during the inspection; these cover issues such as the condition of the air conditioning systems, appropriateness of maintenance regimes, cooling/building loads, fresh air volumes, air change rate, and the control of ancillary units.

The TM44 inspection is as far as possible carried out by making visual observations of representative sample of the air conditioning equipment and other visual indicators such as refrigerant sight glasses, pressure, temperature or filter gauges, although where these are not available the inspector may have taken some test readings.

The air conditioning inspection also includes an examination of records of design, construction and maintenance where made available.

As air conditioning inspectors, we have a duty to comply with relevant health and safety legislation. This includes a duty to draw the building owner or manager’s attention to obvious instances of inadequate maintenance or neglect, where these might have implications for the health and safety of building occupants or the public.

Included in the air conditioning inspection report, is the comparison of size and appropriateness of cooling plant against the cooling loads of the building and the effectiveness of current maintenance regimes. All of which will enable you to optimise your buildings HVAC operations and reduce energy costs and Carbon Dioxide emissions.

Air conditioning systems that are not used for air-cooling for people are exempt from this survey and not covered by the inspection. This exemption would usually apply to air conditioning systems in computer rooms, server rooms, communications rooms, and other areas where people are not present.
The main elements covered in the air conditioning report are:

  • 1. Inspect general condition of air conditioning system, indoor and outdoor unit.
  • 2. Carry out survey to find any poor installation and refrigerant leakage.
  • 3. Identify any old refrigerant like R22.
  • 4. Identify any shortfall in programmer and incorrect date and time.
  • 5. Identify any blockage in the filters and grilles.

In the course of the air conditioning inspection there is no maintenance carried out and no adjustments will be made to controllers. Anything we identify will be included in our report along with suggestions for resolution. For each air conditioning inspection, we normally choose a minimum 3 units or 10% of the existing units and carry out the survey on those samples. As energy assessors, we endeavour to choose the units with the worst conditions and problems for inspections as these will reap the most benefit from the report. However, the recommendations for the sample units may not apply to others.

Recommendations can be as cheap and simple as washing the filters, to very costly ones like replacing the unit. In our recommendations we aim to suggest cost effective and feasible solutions to save money, reduce energy consumption and remove hazardous old refrigerants.

Where feasible, we suggest the use of renewable energy such as wind power, photovoltaic solar panels, and CHP (combined heat and power) units. Sub metering is a method whereby the energy consumption is monitored efficiently and records the effects of improvements made to the systems.

We may also suggest changes to the building fabric by improving the insulation, using better glazing, reflective barriers, and external shading are also part of our recommendations as these changes will reduce cooling load, reduce energy consumption and co2 emission.

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Elements of the TM44 Air Conditioning Inspection Report Part 2