HPAC Magazine

Articles

Article HydronicsPlumbing

Boiler maintenance to-do list

August 30, 2018 Tim Kane

One of the biggest thieves of efficiency in boiler operations is the accumulation of soot and/or scale on heat exchanger surfaces. It does not take long for soot to start causing significant loss of energy efficiency. In a matter of

Article ControlsEngineeringHydronics

Change of Vision With Differential Temperature Control

August 29, 2018 David Connors

Over time the hydronic industry has changed the approach to system piping designs and temperature control as equipment efficiency and technology has evolved. In the late 1960s and early 1970s out-door air reset was utilized. This allowed for better temperature

Article HeatingManagement

Growth of 20 per cent by 2025 predicted by propane industry study

August 29, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

Canada’s propane industry is expected to grow by over 20 per cent between 2017 and 2025, according to a study commissioned by the Canadian Propane Association (CPA). Results of the study, conducted by the Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) –

Article ControlsHydronics

How to align expectations of hydronic systems with reality

August 29, 2018 Mike Miller

It is not uncommon for contractors, and sometimes consumers, to call me to complain about the performance of a hydronic system. Many of these times, if it is not system settings related, it is because the consumer is expecting different

Article HydronicsSolar

How effectively are contractors integrating solar into hydronic systems?

August 28, 2018 Rob Waters

There is currently a lot of attention being devoted to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from buildings. One of the primary methods that governments are using to meet their goals is to tighten up building codes to require super-insulated and

Article Hydronics

The diminutive cost of operating a well-designed hydronic distribution system

August 28, 2018 John Siegenthaler

Many hydronic heating professionals like to promote that the modern boilers they install are capable of operating with thermal efficiencies in the range of 95 +/- per cent. Professionals who install geothermal heat pumps often boast that their equipment is

Article Human ResourcesManagement

What is the value of business growth networks for contractors

August 27, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

Mechanical contractors remedy complex and critical problems in the field. The skills to run a small- to medium-sized business, however, may not come as easily. A contracting business can become stagnant without the acumen to handle operations tasks, such as

Article CoolingForced AirHeatingHVAC Systems

The Challenge of Category IV Gas-Fired Appliance Venting

August 24, 2018 Ian McTeer

Which 90 per cent AFUE furnace brand got into Canadian basements first? Perhaps it was Clare Brothers HEG series MegaSave furnace or maybe the Lennox G14 Pulse shared the limelight with Clare for first high efficiency gas furnace on the

Article EngineeringHVAC SystemsHydronics

An abridged review of noise sources and methods to control sound transmission

August 24, 2018 Robert Bean

Sound complaints are the number one indoor environmental quality problem in buildings today, surpassing thermal comfort, indoor air quality (IAQ) and lighting quality in the hierarchy of occupant discomfort. Objections can be anything from chatter in offices, to the neighbour’s

Article Green TechnologyHPAC GeneralSolar

First Zero Carbon building design certification goes to Cora Group

August 23, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

The Cora Group in Waterloo, ON and Mohawk College in Hamilton, ON earned Canada’s first and second Zero Carbon Building Design certifications from the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC). The Cora Group was presented Canada’s first Zero Carbon Building Design

Article Plumbing

Birds foul up atmospheric hot water tank

August 23, 2018 Steve Goldie

I have the opportunity to visit many different jobsites over the course of my workweek. Sometimes it is to do some on-site training, sometimes it is to inspect and consult on an ongoing installation, and quite often it is to

Article

Transformers: More than meets the eye

August 22, 2018 Curtis Bennett

I really hope that the title of this article is not lost on readers. When I say the word transformer two things come to mind. The first is Autobots and Decepticons because I grew up in the 80s and the

Article CoolingHeat PumpsHeatingHydronics

A look at air-to-water heat pump systems

May 31, 2018 John Siegenthaler

Heat pumps are destined to carve out an increasing percentage of future residential and light commercial HVAC market. This trend is based on the convergence of market drivers such as increasing electrical generation by utility scale photovoltaics and wind turbines,

Article ControlsHealth & SafetyHVAC Systems

Sorting through the finer points of AC and DC voltages

May 30, 2018 Curtis Bennett

We all know, young or old, what comes to mind when we see the word Thunderstruck: AC/DC. This serves two purposes here, one is that the band is awesome and two, it is a good segue into the next Electricity

Article HydronicsPlumbing

Thermostatic mixing valves

May 30, 2018 Robert Waters

Are thermostatic mixing valves for plumbing or hydronic heating? Well it turns out they are for both. The same valve can be found in the domestic hot water supply system, as well as the control valve for a hydronic heating

Article HVAC SystemsHydronics

The 3.2 million dollar question

May 29, 2018 Robert Bean

I believe a good chunk of the architectural, building and HVAC industry is unaware that a few years ago California’s Center for the Built Environment (CBE, UC Berkeley) got a big cheque to carry out extensive research on radiant cooling

Article

Canada’s marijuana industry won’t leave HVAC contractors in the smoke

May 28, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

As cultivators and consumers await the legalization of recreational marijuana in Canada late summer 2018, opportunities grow for HVAC contractors. In March 2018, there were 97 licensed medical cannabis facilities nationally, more than double the number in March 2017. As

Delta Faucet black stainless steel finish
Article HPAC GeneralPlumbing

Beyond aesthetics

May 17, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

Accessible home design fuels an evolution of the kitchen for homeowners and of installation practices for plumbing contractors.

Article CoolingHVAC Systems

Ductless Heat Pumps: A Better Split Decision?

May 15, 2018 Ian McTeer

After learning about the latest computer technology during a school visit to the Ontario Science Centre in the 1980s my youngest son asked me if we were getting a fax machine. Hardly computer literate myself in those days, I told

Article ControlsHydronics

Controls: Common issues and installation errors–Part III

May 15, 2018 Mike Miller

As noted in Part I and Part II of this series (see HPAC February and March 2018), control systems are often blamed when something is not operating as expected. More often than not, if control systems do not perform as

Article Heat PumpsHVAC Systems

Sound and vibration in water-source heat pumps

May 14, 2018 Karl Washburn

Dynamic power is used to move air and refrigerant in HVAC/R equipment. One unavoidable result of this dynamic application of power is sound and vibration. In a water-source heat pump (WSHP), both the compressor and supply fan generate sound and

Article HPAC GeneralManagement

Demand prompts frequent updates

May 14, 2018 Jil McIntosh

  Trucks are the best-selling segment in Canada, and that is a bonus for those who buy them for work. With so much demand, they are being updated far more frequently than they have in the past. That can increase

Article HVAC SystemsManagement

AHR EXPO 2018 DRAWS RECORD CROWDS

March 8, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

OPTIMISM IS UP Economic outlook among exhibiting HVAC/R manufacturers is on the upswing, according to an annual survey conducted by AHR Expo and ASHRAE. Among survey respondents, 89 per cent forecasted excellent or good growth – up 15 per cent

Article Management

Unharnessed Power

March 8, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

Blazed trails and broken barriers mark the journey into the trades industry for women. When Siân Smith presented the top nine most influential moments of her life and career, she was met eye-to-eye with 130 women – cellphones off, side

Blanco IDS
Article HVAC SystemsPlumbing

New products, trends and technology at Interior Design Show Toronto

March 8, 2018 by Jillian Morgan

Interior Design Show (IDS) Toronto celebrated its 20th year with a look to the future. The showcase theme Future Forward focused on elements of design that have contributed to an evolution of the architectural and design industry. In the plumbing

Article HVAC Systems

WHAT’S NEW WITH HRVS AND ERVS?

March 7, 2018 Ian McTeer

In the fall of 1992, a self-employed colleague of mine rented a single family, two-story, detached house in Scarborough. He had been victimized by the severe recession wrought, in part, by the collapse of the Canadian housing market bubble in

Article

A BASIC PELLET BOILER RETROFIT

March 6, 2018 John Siegenthaler

Over the last four years I have been reviewing submittals for proposed heating systems using pellet boilers. They come from heating professionals ranging from contractors to professional engineers. These submittals are required to participate in an incentive program that offers

Article Hydronics

MECHANICAL ROOM RETROFIT

March 6, 2018 Steve Goldie

Equipment change out impacted by space, venting and timing issues. Friends of mine were recently faced with a decision when their combination boiler/DHW heater refused to provide either. Now this should not have come as a complete surprise as the

Article Health & SafetyPlumbing

BACKFLOW PREVENTION: PROTECTING OUR WATER SUPPLY

March 6, 2018 Robert Waters

In today’s modern world, maintaining the supply of safe, clean drinking water can be challenging with so many potential chemical contaminants. In addition, there are many different ways that potable water systems can be cross connected with other systems. Regulated

Article HPAC GeneralRefrigeration

Making the transition to low GWP refrigerants

March 4, 2018 Brian S. Smith

Currently, the HVAC/R industry is undergoing a third paradigm shift in regulating refrigerants–this time the transition is specifically aimed at addressing climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. The earlier two transitions from CFCs to HCFCs, then from HCFCs to HFCs,