Winning The War Against COVID-19

To our valued clients, partners and colleagues:

 

Winning The War Against COVID-19

The human race is experiencing one of the most serious challenges of modern history. Few were able to foresee the risk of a virus like COVID-19 to the world population and the speed at which a pathogen such as this could spread around the globe. Nevertheless, here we are in the midst of a war against an invisible enemy and it is time to focus the fight.

Our Team is Ready to Serve

Over our 39-year history, we have amassed valuable experience managing indoor environments for health, safety and productivity. Our first phase in this war on COVID-19 was to assure the safety of our Team so we can continue to serve you. We have the appropriate PPE and training to minimize exposure and our Teams are ready to roll. The HVAC service industry has been deemed an “essential service” in every State that currently has “shelter in place” orders including Maine and New Hampshire.
After this phase in the battle passes and people are returning to work, we will need to prepare buildings for the risks that will persist for months. If you wish to discuss feasibility of protecting your building occupants, please contact us so we can customize a program.
Availability of much of the devices and equipment needed has started to dwindle but there are still many measures that can happen immediately while we wait out lead times.

How Thayer is Fighting Back

Over the past several weeks we have been tireless and relentlessly studying everything we can learn about this virus and put together quite an armory of weapons to fight back. We have a significant and growing knowledge of COVID-19 modalities for spreading once inside the indoor occupied environment. The list of possible changes and improvements to the safety of occupants includes, but is not limited to the following:
• Increasing “dilution ventilation” rates
• Assuring or improving the quality of outdoor air used for ventilation
• Optimizing “economizer” operation
• Raising the indoor temperature and relative humidity levels
• Utilization of ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI)
• Photocatalytic oxidation (PCO)
• Upgrading air filtration to trap airborne pathogens
• Controlling building pressurization
• Optimizing directional airflow
• Sanitizing HVAC systems, spaces and surfaces using powerful oxidizers
Not all of these measures are feasible or advised for all buildings, though proper maintenance of equipment, such as frequent filter changes, can go a long way in trapping pathogens removing them from the airstream.

Translating our Experience with IPM into Fighting COVID-19

Our Lifespring Microclimates division has been designing, installing and maintaining precision indoor cultivation environments for nearly six years now. Oddly enough, these skills and experience come together in fighting COVID-19.
One of the biggest challenges facing indoor organically grown crops is pest management. The comprehensive approach is called integrated pest management (IPM) . The best line of defense in a IPM program is assuring the pest cannot get to the crop in the first place through engineered systems that either kill the pest(s) or prevent it from entering the environment. The comparison to human-occupied environments during this pandemic are quite similar. Our best line of defense is to prevent or minimize human exposure to the pathogen. Social distancing, quarantines, and PPE are all tools to minimize the pathways that may connect the pathogen to the new host. With the addition of measures regarding HVAC equipment, we can further minimize exposure of the pathogen to our building environments .
I personally make two promises to you. The first is that we will remain tireless in our quest to continue learning, sharing and serving you. The second is that we will not suggest any measure that has not been fully vetted and scientifically verifiable. We can share the data and science as appropriate.
We are “in it to win it”, as the saying goes, and together we will prevail.
Sincerely,
Dan Thayer, P,E.
President and CEO

R22 Refrigerant In 2020 – Why Your Older HVAC System Should Be Replaced

If we told you your HVAC heating and cooling costs would increase dramatically, but you could prevent those cost increases – would you?

Truth is, if you have an older system that uses R22 (freon) in 2020 you’ll be paying more (potentially a lot more) to refill or service it.

The HVAC industry has been bracing for the planned phase out of Freon (R22) for commercial HVAC units. Many customers are still unaware of the phase out or are unclear about how it will affect them. The more you know about what is going to happen with R22, the better you will be able to prepare for what needs to happen with aging R22-dependent systems.

R22 is being phased out worldwide because of its harmful effects on the ozone layer. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set January 1, 2020 as the date when R22 is banned from production and importation in the United States.

After that date, R22 cannot be manufactured in the U.S. and it cannot be imported.

What Does the R22 Phase Out Mean for Maintenance and Repairs?

The R22 phase out date means that after January 1, 2020, HVAC systems that use R22 will be obsolete. If the repair requires adding R22 refrigerant to the system, the only options will be reclaimed and previously-produced R22 refrigerant.

As you know, while some simple electrical repairs do not require recharging the refrigerant, most service calls do require a refrigerant recharge.

HVAC system owners that have leaky systems and that have been periodically injecting new R22 into the system will be forced to replace their system.

In the lead up to 2020, R22 was still used in repairs and maintenance. But, the supplies of R22 have been shrinking. . This will lead to the costs of the refrigerant to soar—making certain once routine repairs cost prohibitive.

Advising R22 System Owners

Obviously, it is not wise to install a system now that uses R22. But, what about customers who already own R22-dependent systems?

These customers can continue to use their systems after January 1, 2020 and get as much useful life as possible out of their systems, until they need a repair. But, this course of action means they may be forced to make an emergency HVAC system replacement which will be much more expensive than a well-planned HVAC system update. For most HVAC owners, this is indeed a gamble.

Some R22 units may be able to be converted to use a different refrigerant. However, many conversions may only buy the customers a few more years of useful life. The numbers for many system owners will not favor retrofitting.

The best option, but the one most customers dread, is replacing their system before 2020. This gives them the most reliability and cost predictability.

Have Questions?  Give Us A Call

Source: Intelligent Cooling