Talk with any facility manager, and they're bound to read off a list of reasons why they put HVAC maintenance on the back burner. A facility manager or building owner might view the costs of preventive maintenance as prohibitive, or they lack the appropriate maintenance staff.
Worst case scenario, a building owner might decide to allocate his resources to other areas.
Regardless of the obstacles, choosing to skip routine maintenance is a disaster waiting to happen.
Just like getting annual physicals from the doctor or changing the oil and filters in our vehicles, your facility's HVAC equipment needs regular attention. Even something as simple as an equipment cleaning can prevent problems down the road.
If you're a facility manager responsible for making sure your HVAC equipment is operating properly and efficiently, here's how you can emphasize the benefits of maintenance to a building owner.
When cleanings aren't performed properly, it's hard to see the benefits of regular maintenance. Ensuring that technicians are properly trained will help prevent damage to your system.
Regular maintenance doesn't just increase efficiency, it also helps prevent potential health risks and improves indoor air quality, benefiting the occupants.
Choosing to skip maintenance can lead to harmful and even deadly bacteria, such as Legionella. The most common symptoms resulting from poor indoor air quality are headaches, trouble concentrating, irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs.
Coil cleaners, tube cleaners, cooling tower fill cleaners, industrial vacuums, and cleaning chemicals can all assist technicians in getting the job done. Managers need to specify the appropriate tools that fit the facility's needs.
With advances in design and functionality, one person can manage the equipment, reducing the number of staff and resources required to perform the maintenance.
Benefits to Your Bottom Line
Cost is the number one reason management often choose to overlook or skip maintenance all together. While there are certainly costs to getting started - be it equipment, staff, or hiring an outside firm - not performing maintenance is costly to your bottom line.
For example, a regular cleaning of your system's evaporator and condenser coils will improve your system's efficiency and longevity because the coils won't have to work harder to compensate for dust accumulation, dirt, and other debris. It can also reduce the chances of having more extensive and expensive repairs later down the road, and provides valuable benchmarks which can be noted before larger issues occur.
Before meeting with a building owner to discuss why maintenance is important, facility manager should pull together the potential cost and productivity savings that would result from a more efficient HVAC system, which can make a significant impact on the company's bottom line.