How to Select the Right Boiler or Water Heater System

When new HVAC equipment, such as a chiller or heat pump, is required at a commercial or institutional facility, facility managers are likely to spend considerable time researching the pros and cons of each model, along with energy efficiency. When choosing new equipment, facility managers are usually most concerned with energy efficiency. There are also other considerations, such as lower utility costs and lower environmental impact. But ultimately, it all comes down to the overall needs of your facility and how new equipment will best meet them. Upgrades to a water heater or boiler are no different.

Choosing a boiler or water heater is not a simple task. Each building has its own unique needs, and each serves a specific purpose. Guival Boilers are essential to providing the best possible experience for the occupants.

Steam boilers vs. Hot water boilers

Managers may be unsure whether they should choose a steam boiler over a hot-water boiler when shopping for a new boiler. This will depend on the needs of the facility and how they fit in with larger corporate sustainability goals. Does the facility need to be located far from the central utility plant or is it in a remote area? A steam boiler may be the best option if you need to transfer heat more efficiently throughout your building. For example, smaller pipes with more British Thermal Unit (BTU) can help. Is the high-pressure steam boiler system outdated? It’s time to update your system for more energy-savings. A water boiler is the best option in this situation because it uses less energy and is easier to maintain. These questions will help you determine the best option for your building.

The best system for energy efficiency is another consideration. Medical facilities, for example, are known to have equipment that is a major consumer of energy. Leaders are constantly looking for ways to reduce their environmental footprint. Many managers are forced to weigh energy efficiency costs against life cycle costs and occupant safety. This often results in them choosing a solution that is less than optimal for retrofit projects. Hot water boilers can be up to 40% more efficient than steam systems. They also require less maintenance and use fewer chemicals.

It Is Essential To Have Dual Fuel Sources

Gas, propane, oil or electricity can all be used to power heating systems. Facilities should consider having a secondary fuel source to use in case the primary source is unavailable. It is important to have a backup option during disasters, when the facility may need to temporarily switch to a different fuel source if natural gas lines are cut off. In times of emergency, facilities must function properly. Dual fuel sources are therefore even more crucial.

Consider the climate of the area and whether it experiences seasonal changes when deciding which fuels to use in your boiler system. Electricity can be used as a back-up source by a facility not only because this is a more efficient option but also because the facility’s peak electrical demands are lower in winter.

Anticipate Future Needs

The lifespan of heating equipment can range from 15 to forty years, depending on the boiler type, the preventive maintenance performed and the water quality. Facility managers need to anticipate changes as facilities grow and allow some flexibility for future adjustments. If a facility expects to grow substantially over the next few years, it may be best to choose a modular design such as pre-piping headers for new boilers.

If an expansion is planned, facility managers should also consider fuel lines, headers for distribution, electrical provisions and the area where the boiler or hot water heater will be placed.

It can be difficult to choose a new system for your facility. However, if you take the time to evaluate the needs of the facility and match them with a model which meets all those requirements, the task becomes a lot easier. Although boilers and water heaters are not visible to the facility’s occupants, they play an important role in ensuring that their experience is positive.

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