The Basics of Commercial HVAC Installation

Thinking about upgrading your commercial HVAC system? Designing a new commercial building and wondering which HVAC system is right for you? So that you know what to expect as you get ready to invest in a new commercial HVAC system, you should understand a few installation basics. Here’s a look at the process.  

1. Determining Load Capacity

To install a new commercial HVAC system, your contractor needs to figure out the right load capacity. The size of HVAC system you need varies based on the size of your building and its layout, but you also have to take into account internal and external temperature factors, such as equipment that generates heat and how the position of the building affects solar heat gain. 

2. Choosing the Right Commercial HVAC System

There are a variety of different types of commercial HVAC systems. You may choose a traditional furnace and air conditioner connected to ductwork, or you may opt for a single split system, a multi-split system, a variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system, a variable refrigerant volume (VRV) system, or another option. A commercial HVAC specialist can help you decide what’s right for your business based on your heating and cooling needs. 

3. Finding a Spot for the Condenser

Regardless of the type of HVAC system you select, you generally need to install a condenser. Depending on your available space, you may want to locate the condenser in an attic, on the roof of your building, on a window ledge, or elsewhere outside of your building. Additionally, if you’re putting in a new HVAC system or making the switch to a ductless system, you need to decide where the vents or the indoor air handling units should be located. 

4. Assessing Existing Ductwork

When upgrading an existing commercial HVAC system, your contractor also needs to assess the condition of your existing ductwork. Old inefficient ducts can lose up to 20% of the cool air moving through the system, unnecessarily driving up your energy bills. A technician can let you know if you should clean, repair, adjust the dampers, or make other changes to your ductwork. In some cases, you may need custom ductwork, or you may want to bypass using the ducts and install a ductless system. 

5. Talking About Your Budget

In all cases, you need to consider your budget when installing a new commercial HVAC system. If you’re on the fence about whether or not you need a new system, you should look at the cost of repairs and consider how your old system is affecting your energy bills, and then compare those costs to the potential savings related to investing in a more efficient HVAC system. 

If you’ve already decided that you need a new commercial HVAC system, you should talk with your contractor about your budget and get estimates related to different types of systems to see what works best for your bottom line. You should also talk with your HVAC contractor about special rebates or low interest loans that can help offset the cost of installing a new commercial HVAC system. 

6. Creating Zones

With a ductless HVAC system, you can create several zones in your commercial building. Sometimes, zones are obvious based on the layout of your building. For example, each floor may constitute its own zone. In other cases, zones may need to be based on the amount of heat produced in different areas of your building. In a restaurant for example, you may need separate zones for the kitchen and the dining area due to the heat generated by the cooking equipment.

7. Planning Installation

Once you’ve narrowed in on the right commercial HVAC system based on your building’s needs and your business’s budget, you can start to plan installation with your contractor. With a ducted system, a contractor may easily be able to attach new HVAC equipment to the existing ductwork, without disrupting your business. 

If you’re getting new ductwork, you may need to shut down operations for a few days or even a couple weeks while the contractors install the ducts. With zoned ductless systems, you can opt for zoned installation so that you pause operations in some areas but continue working in the areas that aren’t affected by the installation. 

Want to learn more about installing a new commercial HVAC system? Need help choosing the right commercial HVAC system for your needs? Then, contact us today. At N.E.T.R., Inc., we are Mitsubishi Diamond Elite contractors with a long history of working with satisfied commercial clients, and we look forward to working with you.

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