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AIR LEGISLATION

It's not cheap to be this cool

If you want to be cooler than a cucumber it can be expensive, especially when you consider that in many workplaces the air conditioning system can contribute to a third of the overall electricity cost! That’s certainly not very cool and as a result, new legislation was introduced earlier this year as part of the implementation of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive in England and Wales. That means nearly all air conditioning systems now have to be inspected on a regular basis to highlight energy efficiency issues. This obviously affects thousands of commercial buildings so if you haven’t already had your system checked, here’s what you need to know:

  • All air conditioning systems with a rated output of more than 250kW had to be inspected before 4th January 2009.
  • All systems with a rated output of more than 12kW, but less than 250kW should have been inspected by 4th January 2011.
  • Thereafter inspections are required by law every five years.
  • For any new systems installed after 1st January 2008, the first inspection should take place within five years of the installation date.
  • All inspections have to be carried out by an accredited air conditioning assessor. See the Chartered Institute of Building Service Engineers website.
  • The inspector will examine all related equipment, air movement systems and controls and may require access to plant rooms or rooftop locations.
  • After the inspection, the assessor will provide a written report that shows the current efficiency of the system, details of any faults and give advice and guidance on how it can be improved.
  • You are under no obligation to act on the advice provided, although if you do, it’s likely that you’ll reduce energy consumption.

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