Commercial chillers are needed for a wide range of commercial facilities to provide proper chilling. Functioning as heat exchangers that use water to produce cool air, chillers are installed on the roofs of commercial buildings. When combined with cooling towers, these installations can also provide sufficient cooling for larger spaces.
Here we’ll discuss the different types of chiller installations, their maintenance, and the kinds of upgrades that you can get for chillers.
Basics of Commercial Chiller Installation
There are several types of commercial chillers available depending on each business’s chilling and cooling needs. These are the various chiller models you can get for a commercial business.
Evaporative Tube and Shell Chillers
These types of chilling systems are ideal for use in larger facilities requiring sufficient chilling. If a business has a space requiring a chiller that has a total capacity of several hundred tons, evaporator shell and tube designs are the best choice. Food processing and brewing are a couple of popular applications for these systems, the latter of which often requires cool temperatures for making beverages.
Plate Evaporator Chillers
These systems are more ideal for use in smaller applications, such as microbreweries and other businesses requiring cooling for less space. These chillers have a capacity of a little below 150 tons, so if you require more cooling, you may need an additional chiller or choose a larger system.
Reciprocating Compressor Air Chillers
Reciprocating compressor air chillers are often used for larger industrial or commercial operations, and it is the most common compressor design. However, these chillers contain many moving parts, which means they require regular maintenance to function properly. They’re also available in many sizes needed for large applications.
Centrifugal compressors don’t have as many parts, which means less maintenance requirements. These systems are ideal for applications requiring a chilling system that’s reliable, cost-effective, and efficient. They are available in multiple sizes based on the needs of a wide range of commercial or industrial chilling applications.
Screw compressors are often used for heavy-duty chilling in food processing and other industries. Like centrifugal compressors, they come with few parts to minimize maintenance and are easily installed on mobile units. These systems are great for businesses that need efficient backup chilling systems in the event of an emergency.
Recommended Maintenance for Commercial Chillers
There are several types of maintenance that chillers will require over time to keep machinery working the way it should.
Keep Tubes Clean for Optimal Heat Transfer
All chiller tube systems will require occasional cleaning, which will keep equipment functioning at maximum efficiency. Over time, tubes could develop contaminants that significantly decrease efficiency, but cleaning will prevent this.
Treat Condenser Water to Prevent Scale and Chiller Corrosion
For condensers that use open cooling sources like atmospheric cooling towers, water treatment will be needed to prevent corrosion and biological growth that can compromise the system. Subsequently, the chiller will be more energy-efficient.
Analyze the Chiller’s Compressor Oil
Compressor oil should undergo lab testing on an annual basis for moisture content, acids, and other types of contaminants that impact the chiller’s performance.
Lower Incoming Water Temperature
To further increase efficiency, you can also decrease incoming water temperatures.
Common Chiller Issues and Repair Solutions
There are multiple issues that chillers could experience over time, for which you’ll need maintenance and repairs or replacement parts.
Low Pressure Trip
Low pressure trips result from low refrigerant levels, a broken capillary in a power assembly, minimal to no water flow, screens or filters that have become clogged, or a mud or antifreeze coating the evaporator tubes.
High Pressure Trip
High pressure trips occur when water-cooled condensers have little to no flow, water-cooled condensers have a level of mineral buildup resulting from poor-quality water, air-cooled condensers are clogged with debris or has a nonfunctioning fan, or if the chilled water tank temperature is unusually high at over 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Oil Failure Trip
Oil failure trips can result from low oil due to refrigerant leaks, low superheat, or damage to oil pumps.
Blown Fuses or Starter Trips
Starter trips and blown fuses can result when a motor, a compressor, or wiring shorts or is over-amped.
Chiller System Is Running but Not Reaching Thermostat Setpoint
This occurs when an evaporator has accumulated ice internally, an antifreeze breakdown results in poor heat exchange, or if the system load is beyond the chiller’s capacity.
Rebuilding and Upgrading Your Commercial Chiller
After years of use, chillers may sustain enough wear and damage that cleaning or replacement parts won’t be able to properly maintain these systems. You may also have an outdated chiller model that could benefit from an upgrade, either through a total rebuild or the replacement of individual parts.
Reliable professionals such as those at Bullock, Logan & Associates can provide you with rebuilding and upgrading services that give you the results you want.
Your Local Commercial Chilling Experts
When you work with the experienced professionals at Bullock, Logan & Associates, you’ll be able to get dependable commercial chiller installation, maintenance, and rebuilding and upgrading services. Turn to us for all of your industrial or commercial chiller needs, and we’ll ensure you have a chiller that gives you consistent results. We’re ready to give you a long-lasting solution that maximizes both efficiency and cost-effectiveness today.
We service many locations: Elk Grove Village, Schaumburg, Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Evanston, Wheaton. Request your free chiller inspection.