Any commercial system that uses airducts, aka a forced air system, needs to be balanced. When a system is unbalanced the air will not circulate properly, which means that some areas of your property may be colder or warmer than others, and some areas may have worse air quality. This can be a problem in all commercial spaces. Plus, the more potential there is for harmful airborne contaminants in your air, the riskier it is to run an unbalanced system. So, you should balance your system at any time you think it might be out of balance. Here’s what you need to know.
How Often Should a Commercial HVAC System be Balanced?
Balancing an HVAC system is the last step in installation. So, your system should be balanced if you’ve had to add anything new to it, from an additional air conditioning unit to new ventilation in your commercial kitchen. However, just because your system started off balanced, doesn’t mean it will stay that way.
Any changes to your environment may cause the system to become unbalanced. This includes changing which furniture is in which office or where the furniture is within a space. Changing the weatherproofing on doors, installing or removing walls, hosting more people in one space over another, all may change the demands on your HVAC system and cause it to be unbalanced.
Your system should be rebalanced anytime that you think it may be delivering more air into one space than another. So, how do you tell?
Signs Your System Need Balancing
If you’ve made the kinds of major changes we have listed above, then you know you need to call your HVAC technician to find out if the system needs rebalancing. However, there are other signs that you can rely on to:
- Temperatures differ: Walk around with a thermometer and find out if different areas of your property have noticeably different temperatures and especially if these temperature differences are consistent.
- Air quality differs: You can measure air quality or you can simply walk around and feel if the air in certain spots is stuffier or has a larger percentage of airborne contaminants than other areas.
- Low air pressure: If a vent does not output the same amount of air as another there could be balance issues. Simply check the vent by putting your hand in front of it and comparing the pressure with other vents.
- Humidity: Large discrepancies in humidity between spaces, without obvious reasons like a shower or kitchen in one of these spaces, can indicate that there are balance issues.
Why Balance Your System?
When a commercial HVAC system is unbalanced it provides inconsistent temperature, poor air quality, and may even put pressure on the units such that they develop issues and need repairs. Balancing your HVAC system will help keep all of these costs lower and ensure that you are getting the temperature, air quality and humidity environment that is ideal for your property.