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CMMS the breath of fresh air for air-conditioners

CMMS the breath of fresh air for air-conditioners

Wednesday 08 april 2020

The AirCo! A piece of equipment that we tend to forget. And yet, when a breakdown occurs in the office, at home, on a production site, in a hotel, it is impossible not to notice it. In the summer, and that's when the breakdown occurs, discomfort will be immediately perceived, team productivity will decrease and complaints will multiply. To avoid this, let's see how CMMS will help you keep your air conditioning equipment in good working order. 

Air conditioning or simple ventilation?

 
Often maintained and serviced by the same operators, air conditioning and ventilation each have distinct characteristics: ventilation focuses on the renewal of air and its proper circulation between the different rooms of a building, while air conditioning controls its temperature and humidity. An air-conditioning system will thus cool the air temperature in summer and, for systems called reversible, heat it up in winter.
 
These two technical installations contribute to the comfort and health of users, the safety of buildings, anti-pollution standards and respect for the environment. For these reasons, regulations are strong and preventive maintenance is essential. 
 
 
 

The importance of regular preventive maintenance

For ventilation

 
Air quality is paramount when we know that we spend 70 to 90% of our time in an enclosed space, even outside of confinement. And yet, it is estimated that indoor air is 5 to 10 times more polluted than outdoor air. 
 
Good air renewal is essential to avoid both health consequences such as an increase in respiratory disorders and asthma but also building degradation: humidity, condensation, mould growth, etc. It is to prevent these risks that since 1982 in France, the installation of a ventilation system is mandatory in new housing.
 
Having an efficient and well-maintained ventilation system also has an economic interest. It is indeed the second item of expenditure for establishments receiving from the public (ERP), after that of the production of hot water. Regular maintenance will make the system more energy-efficient and save money.
 
Many of the recurring problems inherent to fans, such as clogged air filters, blocked condensing units, blocked vents, leaks in ducts, etc., can easily be avoided by implementing appropriate preventive maintenance plans. In other words, regular checks to prevent damage. For example, this may include regular dusting of installations or changing air filters in strict accordance with the supplier's recommendations.
 
Finally, complete maintenance must be carried out at least every 3 years, or even every year for gas systems, and includes cleaning, checking the maintenance of the ducts and the motor block casing, checking the fresh air inlets, the general condition of the fan, the connection sleeves between the network and the ventilation unit, the electrical connections, etc.
 
Are you a service provider? Do you remember the date of the last maintenance carried out? More or less than 3 years ago? Take a look at your CMMS application to refresh your memory before arriving at your customer's site. 

For air conditioning 

 
The service life of a cassette air conditioner is approximately 15 years. To keep it as efficient as it was on the first day, regular maintenance is required. As with ventilation, it is necessary to dust the filters to maintain optimal air quality. It is estimated that this cleaning should be done every 2 to 3 months. Some systems are now equipped with indicator lights indicating that cleaning is required!
 
Other elements can help anticipate a breakdown: a system that becomes noisy, that seems to be struggling to produce the required temperature, should alert you to the need to call in a professional for more in-depth checks.
 
Remember also that air conditioning systems are subject to outdoor conditions, whether it is climatic variations, the rate of particles in the air, the occupancy rate of the building, all these elements have a significant impact on the wear and tear and efficiency of an air conditioner. This is why it is necessary to test the installation at the height of its use. With your maintenance calendar, you will immediately know the period of most intense use and plan your appointments at the right time.
 
Finally, regular maintenance checks that the installation is watertight, that the electrical connections, the battery, the filters, the condensation, the temperature, etc. are in good working order. 
 
 
 

Industry regulations? 

 
Regulations in the field of air conditioning and ventilation are numerous and lead to a multitude of documents to be produced for professionals in the sector. Don't wait any longer to digitize them!

For ventilation

 
In France, the rule is notably dictated by the decree of 24 March 1982, amended on 28 October 1983, which emphasizes the principle of general and permanent ventilation. Idem in Belgium. In a dwelling or a building, the air must be able to circulate freely between the different rooms. It is forbidden to caulk the air vents!
 
A distinction must also be made between ventilation boxes intended for residential use (called UVR, Residential Ventilation Units) and those placed in non-residential places (Non-Residential Ventilation Units). The required clean airflow rate varies greatly: less than 250m3 per hour in residential and more than 1000m3 / hour in non-residential. In other words, the ventilation system of a factory or office building has nothing to do with the CMV (Controlled Mechanical Ventilation) installed in your home.
 
For new systems, the European Ecodesign Ventilation Regulation, which has been in force since January 1, 2016, is already well known to consumers: these are the energy class A to G (eco-labeling) labels affixed to appliances. It should also be noted that since 2018, the fans installed are quieter: minus 5 decibels for our ears, compared to the 2016 regulation, and save at least 20 kWh of electricity compared to a mechanical ventilation system (VMC).
 
When installing a new ventilation system, in a new or old building, the installer provides the customer with a file proving that it complies with the standards in force (NF DTU 68.3 in France, NBN D50-001 in Belgium). This document engages the responsibility of the installer who can prove that he has taken care of the correct dimensioning of the installation, that he has provided secure and enlightened access for maintenance operations and that he has ensured the correct operation of the air network by presenting the tests, controls, and checks carried out. In other words, using a CMMS to integrate photos, reports and measurements collected on-site can be very practical.

For air conditioning

 
In France, the passage of a professional is essential for installations containing more than 2kg of refrigerant. The refrigeration or air conditioning specialist must issue a certificate attesting that the appliance is properly sealed. 
 
If the installation contains more than 3 kg of refrigerant, in addition to the annual passage, the operator and the owner must set up a control register, valid for 5 years, signed at each passage. Failure to comply with these obligations may result in a fine of between 450 and 1,500 euros.
 
In Belgium, the rule differs slightly. If the installation contains less than 3kg of refrigerant, there is no maintenance obligation. If the installation contains more than 3kg, an annual inspection must be carried out. For 30kg it is half-yearly and for 300kg it is quarterly.
 
In both cases, a CMMS will facilitate the organization of recurring passages and the production of regulatory documents, to be archived and transmitted to the user.

Future legislation 

 
The legislature does not intend to stop there. The European directives reinforce the importance of the environmental impact of ventilation systems, including the calculation of the grey energy, i.e. all the energy used during the product's life cycle from manufacture to disposal and recycling, excluding the period of use, of the carbon footprint. With systems offering flexible flow, energy recovery is likely to be favored by consumers, who are also placing increasing emphasis on indoor air quality. Logically, in order to demonstrate these good results, manufacturers and installers will have to produce new documents to pass on to their customers.
 
As you will have understood, regulations require ventilation and air conditioning specialists to justify the good conformity of their installations by regular readings. This can very quickly turn into a mountain of documents to be produced, sent to the customer, archived and brought out again during the next maintenance intervention. All this represents a lot of paperwork and using CMMS software is the solution to lighten your workload.
 
 
 

CMMS: the indispensable help in managing your operations 

Are you an air conditioner? HVAC service provider? 

 
Having the Yuman CMMS will enable you to list the various installations for which you are responsible, the passages and the planned frequency for each of your contracts. Anticipate your customers' deadlines and keep them informed with ease.
 
More specifically, Yuman helps you to :
 
  • Identify the installations for which you are responsible
  • Add photos, manuals, instruction sheets and build the digital equipment service logbook
  • Access the service history: see at a glance the parts changed, fluids removed, power supply controls, units cleaned and filters changed.
  • Encode your contracts, create maintenance task lists with the instructions and checks to be performed
  • Automatically trigger your preventive maintenance plans
  • Manage your deadlines
  • Notify your customers of your technician's visit.
  • Digitize your regulatory forms, such as the Cerfa 15497*02 in France, to be completed in the field and shared immediately if desired
  • Record your refrigerant consumption while on the move
 
All this through a web & mobile CMMS application, with a fluid and intuitive workflow that accompanies you throughout the day, in the office or on the job.

Are you in charge of maintenance?  

 
Having a Yuman CMMS will enable you to better organize and monitor the maintenance of your ventilation and air conditioning systems, and guarantee that you will have more efficient technical installations that consume less energy. 
 
The challenge is to facilitate the management of your internal technical teams and communication with your sub-contracting partners since you finally share the same information base.
 
You benefit from the high availability of your installations, you increase the level of satisfaction of the users of your buildings, you limit the number of complaints and claims. You are guaranteed to be in compliance with regulations. 

Conclusion

 
Compliance with regulations, improvement of well-being, health, and safety, in the specific sector of maintenance of air conditioning and ventilation installations, it is becoming essential to equip yourself with Yuman.
 

By the way, our ambition is to provide an unparalleled user experience. Check it out right away: try CMMS for free. Within 2 minutes, the time it takes to create your account, you'll discover what's newest in this category of software.

You can also benefit from a demonstration led by one of our consultants: book a videoconference

Good discovery and see you soon.

 

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