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Fastrack - October 13, 2010

Oct. 15, 2010
Commissioning Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

October 13, 2010


Commissioning Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them
By Ron Wilkinson, PE, LEED AP; AKF Group LLC; New York, N.Y.

Recently, I collaborated with the Urban Green Council—the New York chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)—on a list of commissioning (Cx) pitfalls for urban commercial and institutional projects seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. Avoiding these errors will help lower costs and make the Cx process more useful to the design/bid/build team: [MORE]





Top 5 Attractions of HVACR Week 2010
By Megan Spencer, Associate Editor

Produced and managed by Contracting Business and HPAC Engineering, HVACR Week 2010 in Baltimore was so full of educational, inspirational, and entertaining events and opportunities, it was hard to pick a favorite. The Top 5 attractions, according to this humble editor, were: [MORE]

Manufacturers Cautiously Optimistic About Economy in 2011, Survey Says

Manufacturers are optimistic about the economy heading into 2011, but not quite as optimistic as they were heading into 2010, a recent survey of more than 1,000 International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition (AHR Expo) exhibitors worldwide reveals. [MORE]




California Building Standards Commission Reinforces Plumbing Standard

The California Building Standards Commission references NSF International’s plumbing standard in the latest version of the California Plumbing Code for water-piping systems. NSF/ANSI Standard 14, Plastics Piping System Components and Related Materials, verifies the performance and safety of plastics piping-system components and related materials. [MORE]

AHRI Releases August Heating- and Cooling-Equipment Shipment Data

According to the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), commercial-gas-water-heater shipments increased 7 percent in August 2010 to 5,835 units, compared with 5,447 units shipped in August 2009. Commercial-electric-water-heater shipments increased 5 percent in August 2010 to 4,573 units, up from 4,347 units shipped in August 2009. [MORE]

Rooftop Units Reducing School’s Operating Costs, Environmental Impact
At Eagle Mountain Elementary School in Fort Worth, Texas, older HVAC units were noisy and not very energy-efficient. AAON provided 60 RQ Series (available from 2 to 6 tons) and six RN Series (available from 6 to 70 tons) geothermal-heat-pump rooftop units to Eagle Mountain Elementary School. [MORE]

Commercial-refrigeration-application motors
The Green Choice brand of motors is designed to address current environmental concerns. JuggerNaut, iMotor, and 3-in-1 motors are designed for commercial refrigeration applications and save energy by reducing the amount of electricity needed, resulting in thousands of dollars in energy savings for a typical supermarket. [MORE]
--A.O. Smith Electrical Products Co.

Energy-usage meters
The Badger Meter Series 380 Btu meter is an all-in-one energy-usage package for monitoring hydronic heating or cooling systems. The units accurately measure flow and temperature differential to compute energy. They can measure cold-service fluid temperatures from -20 to 60°C and hot-service fluid temperatures from 4 to 125°C. [MORE]
--Badger Meter Inc.

Cooling-tower motor-and-drive system
Baldor has introduced new direct-drive technology for the cooling-tower industry that improves reliability, reduces maintenance, runs more quietly, and saves energy. By combining the technologies of the field-proven laminated-finned-frame RPM AC motor with a high-performance permanent-magnet salient pole rotor design, Baldor offers an energy-efficient, power-dense product that can directly replace the right-angle gearbox and jack-shaft installation in many conventional cooling towers. [MORE]
--Baldor Electric Co.

Hotel Operator Upgrades to High-Efficiency Screw Compressor in Chiller
For commercial-property owners forever on the lookout for ways to reduce their utility bills, a major opportunity arises when it is time to replace old compressors in HVAC systems. When Harrison Property Group, the owner of 10 hotels, needed to replace an aging 60-ton reciprocating compressor in its chiller at the Holiday Inn in Ocean City, Md., it turned to BITZER. [MORE]

Split geothermal systems
Tranquility split geothermal systems include the Tranquility outdoor split unit (TTP) and the Tranquility air handler (TAH). When combined, the pair has one of the highest efficiency ratings of any geothermal system on the market. The TTP, which comes in 26-, 38-, 49-, and 64-mbh capacities, has a built-in expansion tank to ensure stable loop pressure and a pre-charged compressor section with back-seating service valves for quick installation. [MORE]
--ClimateMaster Inc.

Energy-saving centrifugal fans
Energy-efficient RadiCal centrifugal fans are defining new standards in the field of centrifugal ventilation and air-conditioning technology. The RadiCal's fan blades are designed with an aerodynamically optimized hybrid construction that reduces noise by 50 percent and consumes 50-percent less energy compared with AC fans. [MORE]
--ebm-papst Inc.

Demand-Controlled Exhaust System Eliminates Noise Problem, Saves Thousands
Soon after Park Potomac Place, a luxury high-rise condominium in Potomac, Md., opened, residents started to complain about noise from the kitchen hoods and ducts. During troubleshooting, the traditional constant-speed exhaust systems were found to be exhausting large volumes of conditioned air to the outdoors. [MORE]

Thermal-imaging cameras
FLIR i5/i7 thermal-imaging cameras can be used to quickly diagnose problems, improve efficiency, and ensure worker safety. Ergonomically lightweight, the cameras are heavyweight performers. [MORE]
--FLIR Systems Inc.

Tankless Water-Heating Solutions Saving Manufacturer $349,000 Annually
An environmental-health and safety engineer for one of the world's largest manufacturers of specialty metals and chemicals, Jason Desler was looking for safety-shower and emergency-eyewash solutions for 13 metal-manufacturing facilities spread over 180 acres of desert, where ambient-temperature conditions range from sub-zero to well above tepid-water standards. [MORE]
--Keltech Inc.

Pump Connector Helps Achieve 25-Percent Increase in Suction Pressure
The Indiana University Cyclotron Facility (IUCF) in Bloomington, Ind., is a state-of-the-art multidisciplinary facility. At peak operation, it requires 4.0 megawatts of power. With this power load, cooling of equipment is critical. [MORE]
--The Metraflex Co.

Hydronic heat exchangers
Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating Solutions' exclusive Hydronic Heat Exchangers (HEX) transfer recovered waste energy from cooling operation to a hydronic system, supplying non-potable hot water to other building areas. When used in applications such as variable-air-volume reheat, radiant floor heating, and domestic hot water, these units can reduce overall energy usage and costs. [MORE]
--Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating Solutions

V-belts for rooftop HVAC units
On a hot day, a standard wrapped or smooth V-belt on a fixed-diameter pulley in a rooftop air handler can exceed its 140°F-ambient rating. For every 18°F a belt exceeds its rated temperature, its life is reduced by half. [MORE]
--Optibelt Corp.

Oil, acid, and moisture purger, an energy-saving product
The OAM Purger is designed to remove oil, acid, and moisture from a chiller's refrigerant charge. Oil buildup occurs in all centrifugal chillers. Oil invariably finds its way into the evaporator, where it mixes with refrigerant, degrading system efficiency and capacity. [MORE]
--Redi Controls Inc.

Air-to-water reversible heat pump
By using natural gas as the primary energy source, GAHP-AR Series air-to-water reversible heat pumps supply hot water up to 140°F or chilled water down to 37.4°F. The same unit is suitable for heating or cooling by reversing the absorption cycle, using the outside air for heat rejection in cooling mode and as a heat source in heating mode. [MORE]
--Robur Corp.

Drive package
Yaskawa America Inc. announces the new E7S Slim Configured Drive Package, which provides an E7 drive in a space-saving NEMA 1 package that can accommodate several options, such as circuit breakers, filters, and reactors. The package was designed for flexibility in providing features and options commonly specified by facility designers. [MORE]
--Yaskawa America Inc.

High-efficiency boilers
Bryan Steam's HE-AB series of forced-draft, gas- fired "flexible watertube" water boilers features efficiency of 85 percent. The high combustion efficiency results from an integrated extended-surface heat extractor, which is supported by 7 sq ft of heating surface per boiler horsepower. The boilers operate at normal operating temperatures and without the challenges of special venting or condensing material. The boilers are available in six models, ranging from 900-MBH to 3,000-MBH inputs. The flexible- watertube design provides fast internal circulation and eliminates damage from thermal shock and stresses caused by poor or unequal internal circulation. Visit
-- Bryan Steam LLC


Monitoring HVAC Performance with Data Loggers
This new 21-page guide provides an introduction to assessing and diagnosing occupant comfort, environmental quality and mechanical problems associated with HVAC systems. The guide offers tips on how to use portable data loggers to diagnose HVAC operation, identify potential energy efficiency upgrades, verify savings, and contribute to achieving LEED certification. Go here to download.
--Onset Computer Corporation


Portable combustion analyzer
A compact portable combustion analyzer, the EN2 is housed in an aluminum frame and hard-side case. It measures up to four gases, such as oxygen, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and nitrogen dioxide, and includes probes for evaluating temperature and stack draft/pressure. An internal pump and peltier gas cooler with automatic condensate drain ensure proper sample conditioning. Standard features include an onboard printer, secure digital memory card, and wireless Bluetooth. Common applications include setup, maintenance, and emission monitoring of natural-gas, diesel, and oil-fired boilers and burners. Click here for more info.


What is GreenTech? Watch our movie at
GreenTech is the symbol of our philosophy towards the development and manufacture of eco-friendly products. It symbolizes our continuous commitment, achievements, and passion to provide customers with high quality products through the use of state-of-the-art methods, responsible business practices and initiatives that benefit not only the user, but the environment as well.
--ebm-papst Inc.


AERCO Low NOx Esteem 399 Gas Fired Hot Water Boiler
The AERCO Esteem 399 is a wall-hung boiler with a uniquely designed stainless-steel heat exchanger with 95% efficiency. At the heart of the AERCO Esteem 399 is a 439 stainless steel fire tube heat exchanger. This highly corrosion resistant heat exchanger is perfect for all condensing Hydronic heating designs. It offers all the benefits of the new generation high efficiency, modulating, condensing boilers along with easy installation, low maintenance and high reliability. For more information, visit


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