HVAC Upgrade


Two separate projects were undertaken as part of an overall HVAC upgrade for a Canadian pharmaceutical manufacturer. The first project was a building comfort study that evaluated total air flow and heating and cooling capacity. Pressurization and outside air make-up were considered, as well as personnel comfort and Building Code requirements. This study made several recommendations to correct zoning problems. JNE performed the following services:

  • Review and evaluate existing systems (drawings, balancing reports)
  • Conduct site inspection, occupancy and zoning reviews
  • Review/prepare heat loads, fresh air and cooling calculations
  • Evaluate existing A/C units including filters
  • Review controls and assess zoning
  • Review existing utilities (hot water, chilled water and steam systems)
  • Review vendor equipment
  • Provide schematic and report with short and long-term recommendations

A rezoning design was undertaken in the second project as a result of the building comfort study. The second project also included an energy conservation study to explore conservation opportunities in the HVAC system as well as with the utilities serving the building. The yearly cost savings and installation costs were identified for each item and used to calculate a payback period. The payback timeframe was evaluated as excellent if it was two years or less, fair if it was between two and five years, and poor if it was greater than five years. An evaluation and recommendations were made around the following items:

  • Set-back thermostats
  • Variable frequency drives
  • High efficiency motors
  • Variable air volume systems
  • Bypass terminal units
  • Reduction of room flow to peak requirements
  • Replacement of absorption chillers
  • Optimized chiller operation

  • Winter heat exchanger bypass of chillers
  • Energy efficient windows
  • Free cooling using 100% outside air
  • Nighttime outside air replacement
  • Outside air control using CO2 sensors
  • Timers on kitchen exhaust and makeup fans
  • Reduced duct leakage

Yearly cost savings were found to be at least $200,000 with implementation of only a few of most effective of these items. In addition, a separate review was performed to evaluate a building automation system (BAS) for the area. Two different vendors were selected for this review. An assessment was made to determine if using a BAS for control would reduce the cost of control wiring and improve the opportunity for cost savings by having more sophisticated optimization available. JNE performed the following services:

  • Rezoning detailed design (from building comfort study results)
  • Energy conservation study
  • BAS review and recommendations


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