Spring 2011 Update from FAS Parts and Services

If your business is not currently utilizing a Customized FAS Maintenance Program... now is the time! Keeping your HVAC/R equipment properly maintained can save your business tons of money! In some cases it can be the difference between keeping your business open and having to close it... but don't just take our word on it, read this article written by a leading facility maintenance professional:

HVAC Maintenance and Energy Savings By James Piper, P.E.

In spite of years of studies most facility organizations today still operate in a reactive mode. Though facility executives know that is far better to schedule maintenance activities using planned and predictive maintenance tools, most continue to spend the bulk of their resources operating reactively. The most common reasons cited for this is the lack of sufficient resources. This approach to maintenance with respect to HVAC systems is particularly troubling given the role that HVAC systems play in today’s facilities. HVAC systems in typical commercial buildings are responsible for more than 40 percent of total energy use. Keeping HVAC systems running properly and at peak efficiency is the first step in managing facility energy use. The importance of good HVAC system maintenance goes beyond just controlling energy use. Sometimes the difference between keeping a business running and having to shut it down is nothing more than proper HVAC system maintenance.

What Goes Wrong?

Reactive maintenance remains the norm, not the exception. Maintenance is deferred. Planned and predictive maintenance remain the exception. The most commonly cited reason for not performing routine and preventive maintenance on HVAC equipment is lack of resources. Proper maintenance of HVAC systems requires careful planning and forward thinking, both of which become lost when maintenance is considered nothing more than an overhead expense. Contributing to this belief is the unfortunate fact that HVAC systems are not the most noticeable components in a facility. Unlike highly visible items, such as carpet or lighting systems, most HVAC systems are out of sight and out of mind, until something goes wrong. And when something does go wrong, it is too late for maintenance to be performed efficiently. Maintenance at that point becomes reactive. Reactive maintenance is the most costly way to maintain building HVAC systems. Organizations that have implemented comprehensive planned and predictive maintenance programs show dramatic decreases in maintenance costs. And when factors are included, such as extended equipment life, reduced energy use, less frequent system downtime, and decreased interruptions to building operations, organizations that have implemented comprehensive maintenance programs find that their total costs can be as much as 50 percent lower than the costs for those organizations that continue maintain equipment reactively. Facility executives should be able to demonstrate the consequences of ignoring HVAC system maintenance while identifying the real cost savings associated with comprehensive maintenance. Demonstrate that dollars spent on the maintenance of these systems will result in an improvement in the bottom line. Energy Savings.

Facilities in which proper HVAC maintenance is completed will use at least 15 to 20 percent less energy than those where systems are allowed to deteriorate. To keep them operating as efficiently as possible, maintenance tasks must be performed on a monthly and annual basis. Let them lapse, and efficiency will decrease, increasing energy use and operating costs!


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