Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems
Fresh, clean air at the right temperature makes your workplace more comfortable. Doing it efficiently saves energy and emissions.
Get your system working well
A heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system should heat and cool only when needed.
- Zone your workspaces correctly. Place thermostats away from heat sources and open doors.
- Consider setting heating up to 20°C and cooling from 24°C, rather than a narrow band around 21°C which is often used. When the temperature sits between the two settings, neither system is needed and having a wider band will lower energy use.
- Do annual maintenance. Check all filters, heat exchangers and outlets are accessible and unobstructed.
- Respond to the real world. Set timers to run the system only when people are at work. Take account of seasonal changes and daylight saving.
Be hands on with a manually-controlled HVAC system
- Turn off heaters and air conditioning in unoccupied areas
- Make sure staff understand how to use the system and how it affects different areas
- Have a process for weekend and holiday shut downs
- Programme the systems to shut down at night
Manage extra heat
Use blinds and screens to minimise overheating from the sun, which can make work areas uncomfortable. Servers, IT equipment and kitchens generate heat that puts more load on air conditioning. There may be cheaper ways to cool these areas, such as installing windows and vents to let in fresh air. You may also be able to duct heat out of the building.
Install a BMS
If you have larger premises, it may be worth installing a building energy management system (BMS) – a software system that monitors and controls energy-using services including HVAC.
Co-funding for HVAC improvements
If you spend more than $200,000 a year on stationary energy, you may be eligible for a co-funding to optimise your HVAC system or to install a monitoring and targeting system.