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    When to Replace Your Commercial HVAC Equipment

    5 Factors to Determine When a New HVAC System is Necessary

    It may be difficult to decide when to invest in a new commercial HVAC system. The following factors can help you determine if replacement is likely necessary or the most cost effective solution. Although HVAC replacement may sound daunting, there are many benefits including the peace of mind of a safe environment and significant energy cost reduction. 

    Age

    If your HVAC system is over 10 years old, you may need to consider replacement. Depending on use and how well the equipment has been maintained, most systems tend to experience major issues after 10-15 years. Once you reach that point, maintenance and rising energy costs are more costly than replacement. 

    Visible Rust or Moisture 

    If you start to see rust on your HVAC system, the pipes that run to it, or you have moisture on your walls, this is a sure sign your equipment isn’t performing as it should. Excessive moisture creates an environment susceptible to mold, mildew and the accumulation of dust. For the safety of those in the building, this issue is best addressed immediately. Depending on the source of the problem, replacing HVAC equipment could be the most cost effective solution. 

    Odors or Noises

    If you notice any unusual smell or noise coming from your HVAC system, it should be addressed immediately to protect the safety of those in the building, air quality and the system itself. Your system, if functioning properly, should operate quietly, any grinding or rattling sounds are a sign of wear.  Depending on the issue and age of the system, replacement may be necessary. 

    Uneven Heating or Cooling

    If your building has pockets of air that aren’t consistent in temperature, this is a sign that your HVAC system is not heating or cooling your building properly. Depending on the cause of the inefficiency, replacement may be necessary. 

    Rise in Energy Consumption

    If your energy consumption increases suddenly, your HVAC system may not be running efficiently. If your utility bill doesn’t level out with maintenance, replacement may be necessary. New systems will provide a substantial reduction in energy consumption.


    Boilers vs. Furnaces: What’s the Difference?

    Boilers and furnaces are two common heating systems that are found in commercial buildings. Although furnaces and boilers both heat spaces, they do it in much different ways.

    How Do Boilers Work?

    Boilers use water or steam to create heat. Water is moved through the building using a system of pipes to warm up the building. With a boiler, radiant heat is created so you won’t feel air blowing in the building. Instead, the warm water is pumped through radiators to raise the temperature of the space.

    How Do Furnaces Work?

    With a furnace heating system, air is pulled from inside the building, heated up and it sent through ductwork to warm the building. Furnaces use forced air to warm a building.

    Boiler Advantages

    • Provides more even and consistent heat
    • Not as noisy as forced air
    • More energy efficient than forced air
    • Better air quality, don’t distribute dander, dust, pollen, and other particles

     

    Boiler Disadvantages

    • Don’t cool a space, need separate equipment for air conditioning (furnaces don’t cool either but use the same ductwork to distribute heat & ac thru home)
    • Can be more costly and labor intensive to install
    • Slower to respond to thermostat changes
    • Old, worn, and damaged boilers have a risk of leaking
    • Difficult to convert to forced air system

     

    Furnace Advantages

    • Furnaces are flexible: they can use heating oil, propane, natural gas or electricity
    • More responsive, can heat a space in less time
    • More affordable to install
    • Don’t have a risk of leaking
    • Zero risk of freezing

     

    Furnace Disadvantages

    • Furnaces are noisier than boilers
    • Don’t provide as consistent heat, some rooms can be hotter and cooler than others
    • Lower air quality – filters need to be changed frequently
    • Less energy efficient than boilers

     

    CMS Mechanical Installs and Services Commercial Heating Systems

    At CMS Mechanical Services, we design, install, and service commercial heating systems. We can provide both boilers and furnaces for commercial spaces in Northern Colorado. Our team also provides preventive maintenance for boilers and furnaces to keep them running efficiently. If you are interested in learning more about the services we provide, contact us today.


    Prepare Your Boiler for Winter

    When you own or manage a commercial building, building occupants are going to expect a comfortable environment, no matter what the outside temperature is. It is important to not get caught unprepared during the first cold spell of the year. Be proactive before the weather starts to change so that you can have peace of mind that your boiler will work when you need it.

    1. Turn on your boiler to test that it is working.

    Before it starts to get cold outside, do a test turn-on of your boiler. Starting it up before you need it will allow you to assess your equipment to make sure it is working properly. Leave your boiler on for around 15 minutes so that you can identify any issues with your boiler’s pressure system.

    2. Check for error codes, leaks, and unusual noises.

    While you are doing your test run of your boiler, inspect it for leaks, error codes, and unusual noises. If you have a loss in boiler pressure, pooling water, or damp spots near your boiler, you may have a water leak. Unusual noises such as whistling, popping, crackling, or even loud banging sounds could indicate that you need to get your boiler flushed. If you have any issues with your boiler, get it serviced by a professional before winter comes.

    3. Clean the area around your boiler.

    The area around your boiler should be unobstructed. Remove any objects near your boiler, especially objects that could be flammable. Clear the surrounding floor space to help ensure the air intakes are not blocked.

    4. Bleed out the radiator.

    If your radiator is colder at the top than at the bottom, it may need to be bled out to release air that is trapped in the system. If this is not done, it can waste energy and money and place a strain on your system.

    5. Make sure your pipes are insulated.

    When the temperatures drop below freezing, your sprinkler pipes are at risk of freezing. Make sure your pipes are insulated to avoid freezes that can cause your boiler to shut off.

    6. Check your carbon monoxide detectors.

    Test your carbon monoxide detectors to ensure that they are leaking. Boilers have the potential to leak carbon monoxide when they are not operating properly. Carbon monoxide is deadly and having working CO detectors can save lives.

    7. Schedule a service checkup.

    The most important step in getting your boiler ready for winters is to have it serviced by a licensed professional. Trained technicians can inspect your equipment and identify any opportunities to improve efficiency.

    CMS Mechanical Services provides boiler maintenance, inspections, and repairs in Northern Colorado. We will get your heating equipment ready to keep you warm throughout the unpredictable Colorado winters. To schedule maintenance, contact us today!


    Taking Care of Your Northern Colorado HVAC Systems

    We know that Northern Colorado weather can be unpredictable. Your mechanical contractor shouldn’t be. CMS Mechanical Services prides itself on providing reliable and dependable service for your heating, cooling and plumbing systems throughout the changes in season and weather. When a mechanical system in your building fails, it can lead to lower productivity, interrupt your processes, and even shut your entire building down temporarily. At CMS, we offer preventative maintenance for your mechanical systems to spot the small issues before they become big problems. If a failure does occur in your facility, our technicians are available 24 hours a day to address the problem timely, efficiently, and precisely.

    Preventative HVAC Maintenance and Service

    The team at CMS Mechanical Services can help you take care of your heating and cooling systems through our comprehensive preventative maintenance contracts. We will perform seasonal check-ups for your HVAC equipment to help ensure that your heating system is prepared for winter, or your cooling system will work throughout the summer months. In addition to helping ensure system functionality, maintenance also provides many benefits such as extending the life of your equipment, reducing energy bills, and improving the quality of your indoor air. After each visit, we will give you a detailed explanation of any repairs that are needed and perform repairs in a timely manner.

    Plumbing System Maintenance and Service

    We are the team you can trust for plumbing system maintenance and service in Northern Colorado. From routine maintenance to emergency repairs, we can take care of all aspects of your commercial plumbing system. We handle frozen pipe repair, water or drain leaks, water heater repair, fixture replacements, sump and sewage pump service, and much more.

    Have Peace of Mind with 24 Hour Emergency Service

    When an emergency occurs, you want to have someone you trust who can solve the problem. At CMS Mechanical Services, we respond to HVAC and plumbing system emergencies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you have a service contract with us, you will get top priority when a serious problem arises. With a large service department, we have the capability of responding to your emergency within 2 hours and will do everything in our power to get your system up and running again.

    Proudly Serving a Variety of Northern CO Facilities

    CMS Mechanical Services is proud to take care of all your HVAC system needs in Northern Colorado.

    • Food Processing
    • Universities
    • Hospitals
    • Power plants
    • Manufacturing facilities

    Contact CMS For Service Today

    If you need service for your mechanical systems in Northern Colorado, contact CMS Mechanical Services today. We serve customers in Fort Collins, Greeley, Boulder, Longmont, Loveland, and the surrounding areas. You can count on the CMS team to be there when you need us most.


    Maintenance Tasks for Commercial HVAC Systems

    HVAC systems are one of the biggest consumers of energy for commercial buildings. The most effective way to reduce energy consumption in your commercial facility is through HVAC preventive maintenance. Maintenance provides many benefits including increasing the lifespan of your equipment, prevent unplanned downtime, and function optimally.

    Basic Maintenance Tasks for HVAC Systems

    While most maintenance tasks need to be performed by a qualified, professional HVAC technician, there are some basic things that building managers or staff can do to take care of your HVAC equipment including:

    1. Change air filters – You should check your air filters at least once a month and change them as needed.
    2. Visual inspection – It is a good idea to do a visual check of your HVAC system on a regular basis to make sure that nothing looks wrong or out of place.
    3. Clean exterior of unit – Clean up any material outside of your unit that could interfere with airflow including leaves, dirt, or grass. Trim back any plants or shrubs that are growing too closely to your equipment.
    4. Clear up blockages – Check to make sure that your supply and return vents are not blocked by any materials or furniture.

    Bi-Annual Maintenance Performed by a Professional

    Before the change in seasons, it is important to get maintenance performed by a professional to make sure it is ready to go for the summer or winter.

    Spring HVAC Maintenance

    Some maintenance tasks that should be performed every spring include:

    • Replace filters
    • Inspect belts and pulleys and replace if needed
    • Clean condenser and evaporator coils
    • Check refrigerant charge and inspect for leaks
    • Clean drain lines and pans
    • Check electrical connections
    • Check operation of fan and blower motor
    • Lubricate moving parts
    • Check operation of controls and thermostat
    • Check for adequate airflow

    Fall HVAC Maintenance

    Every fall, some maintenance tasks that should by performed include:

    • Replace filters
    • Inspect belts and pulleys and replace if needed
    • Clean drain lines and pans
    • Check electrical connections
    • Check operation of fan and blower motor
    • Inspect ignition and burner assembly
    • Lubricate moving parts
    • Check operation of controls and thermostat
    • Inspect heat exchanger

    Schedule Commercial HVAC Maintenance with CMS

    CMS Mechanical Services can provide preventative maintenance services for commercial HVAC systems in Northern Colorado. We provide individualized maintenance plans for each client. After each service visit, we will provide an explanation for any necessary repairs and walk you through any opportunities to improve efficiency. If your HVAC system needs maintenance, schedule an appointment with CMS today!