How to work out what heating system is right for you

When it comes to choosing the right heating system for you and your business, it can be quite difficult to know what the best option is. Whether you are looking for a heating solution for people, product or produce, it is important that you find the right heating solution for you and your business. At Tupello Property Services we can offer professional advice on the installation of a wide variety of heating solutions. We have years of experience in commercial and industrial heating solutions and can offer design and installations from our experienced team. Our heating solutions include the following;

Radiant Tube Heating

If you are looking for a heating solution to keep your staff warm then radiant tube heating is the ideal solution. Radiant tube heating is an ideal people warmer as it is designed to specifically to heat one specific area. For example, if you employ warehouse staff who stand at a pick and pack bench for most of the day then radiant tube heating will heat that area and keep them warm. The other great thing about radiant tube heating is that you can control the temperature yourself and unlike blow air heating, radiant tube heating is draft and noise free. Radiant tube heating is by far one of the most eco friendly ways to keep your staff warm in cold environments.

Warm Air Heating Systems

Unlike radiant tube heating, warm air heating systems are more suited to heating larger environments rather than one specific area. If you are looking for a heating system to heat the following areas then warm air heating is ideal.

  • Retail Units
  • Warehouses
  • Distribution Centres
  • Showrooms & display areas

Warm air heating systems are most commonly provided by suspended heating units on the ceiling but occasionally they can be in floor standing cabinets or even connected to ducting to ensure even distribution of heat. This system can be used for both warm air in the winter and cool air in the summer and is fairly low cost to run. Best of all you have complete control over the system and can set both the temperature and the times of day it will need to be in operation.

Electrical Heating

Electrical heating is normally most beneficial as a fast heating resource in a warehouse area that is rarely populated by people or in a small area where it is required for doors to be open. This type of heating is ideal for those areas due to the speed at which it emits heat to the desired area and also because of its directional capabilities. Electrical heating comes in two different styles;

  • Ceramic Plaque Heaters – This technology uses infra red energy to create heat and if multiple units are placed in specific areas then they can give great results.
  • Quartz Plaque Heaters – These heaters use halogen technology to create heat. The bulbs are designed to reflect from the polished surface direct to where the heat is required.

This technology is ideal for buildings such as;

  • Garages & workshops
  • Churches
  • Schools
  • Sports halls
  • Village halls

This should give you an idea of which option may be best for you but if you are still unsure then contact us today and we will gladly advise you on the best option for you.

Why are air curtains so important?

The air curtain is a device which creates a flow of air separating two spaces, usually found at an exterior entrance to a property. Also known as an ‘air door,’ the most common set up involves a downwards facing air blower mounted over the opening entrance, blowing air vertically across the area. They can be either heated or cooled. Whichever style is used, the fan component within the device must be strong enough to create a jet of air capable of reaching the floor.

Generally, the air curtain is a multifunctional device providing several important services to the building. Firstly, they create a significant amount of forceful turbulence in the area, restricting the entrance of flying insects and airborne pests into the building. They also help minimise the possibility of infiltration through the exterior opening, keeping outside air where it is supposed to be and preventing loss of conditioning. It is a viable system of avoiding the creation of cold drafts, mixing in the warm air generated by the air curtain itself to sustain the comfortable temperature whilst the door or access is opened. They can help to reduce energy costs, preventing loss of regulated air when the door is open. They are most commonly found at customer entry ways, but also in industrial spaces, hangars, cargo entrances and delivery access areas.

It is thought that an efficient air curtain device will have covered its costs within two years of installation by reducing the strain on the heating system or air conditioning within the building, decreasing energy bills accordingly. In most cases, a mechanism such as a door switch is what turns the unit on and off again so that it is only functioning when necessary, further saving energy. Heated air curtains provide additional heat to an entrance space, preventing the wind chill effect from the opening when faced with chilled outside air, particularly in cool climates. The air curtain is most effective when there is minimal pressure difference between the interior and exterior, or in fact where there is neutralised pressure differentiation. Changes in pressure, very extreme differences in the interior and exterior temperature and high levels of humidity can make the air curtain less effective. Exterior wind conditions can also have detrimental effects on the success of the air curtain. In stronger winds, there is an increased rate of mixing between the interior and exterior air and the effectiveness of the barrier is minimised. Air curtain technology can still be used in windy areas, but are often chosen for their benefits in minimising infiltration rather than stabilising temperatures.

What is radiant heating?

Radiant heating uses an element to warm objects to create warmth in the home. In domestic or commercial locations, radiant elements are installed either in the floors, walls or ceilings to heat the surrounding surfaces, which in turn warm the air and radiate heat into the room. It is an alternative to convection heating, which is what is used by conventional heating systems such as radiators. The first uses of radiant heating were used by the Romans, with their hypocaust systems, and as such the technology has been in place for several hundreds of years. In its modern incarnation, electrical elements are used.

There are several advantages to the use of radiant heat as opposed to other heating systems. Firstly, it is thought to be more efficient. The internal air temperature for a building which is radiantly heated will be lower than in a conventionally heated property whilst able to achieve the same level of body temperature and comfort, with perceived temperatures the same. In addition, the systems can be silent, requiring no fans or blowers to move the air and circulate the warmth. This is often preferable in the workplace, where noise can disturb concentration and productivity. It is also thought to be safer, with no exposed hot surfaces to touch and reducing the risk of fire damage. In environments where there are children, radiant heat is a preferable alternative to radiators which children touch and on which they can subsequently burn themselves.

On other consideration for the benefits of radiant heating is the fact that with reduced necessity of air circulation, airborne bacteria and particles are less readily spread throughout a site. This can help restrict infection and promote a healthy and hygienic workplace.

Under floor or wall heating designs are often referred to as low temperature systems. Their heating surface is much larger than a standard radiator or the heat component of other styles of system, so a significantly lower overall temperature is required to heat the environment to the same degree. This additionally improves air humidity, maintaining a natural level rather than drying the air to warm it sufficiently. Depending on the room type and size, the temperature of the under floor or wall heating panel is generally in the region of 29-35°C. Overhead heating panels in radiant heating systems work at a significantly higher temperature and are more often used in commercial facilities, warehouses or industrial locations. They typically are suspended from the ceiling and hang a few metres above the floor to provide adequate heating for employees in the area.

The importance of balanced heating and cooling

It has been proven many times that an uncomfortable working environment has an impact on team members’ ability to concentrate, negatively affecting productivity for the business. Temperature levels are an important part of maintaining the right level of comfort, and maintaining the balance between heating and cooling is essential.

The systems of heating and cooling technologies are depended upon to manage the temperature of a site, but many people don’t realise how essential these services are until it is too late and there is a fault developed. Not only beneficial for looking after staff and employees and protecting their basic functionality, specific heat conditions can also be crucial for protecting stock and produce. Different heating or cooling systems meet different requirements, but all are essential to good workplace activity.

Any comfort system for conditioning temperatures needs to be balanced so that the distribution rates of hot or cold air is in proportion to the loss or gain of temperature in each room. Correctly balanced systems are efficient and cater to individual preferences for warmth. Essentially a simple process, to balance the system all dampers in the building are opened and the thermostats set to a desirable temperature. Using a manual thermometer, the temperature of the rooms need to be measured until each one is satisfactory and no room is either being overly cooled or over-heated. Generally, this provides the appropriate setting for the season, which would only need reassessing going into the opposite time of year – from the ‘cooling’ period into the ‘heating’ period and vice versa.

Balanced systems are those in which the flow through the overall system – including all component terminal lines, distribution lines and central pipes – is perfectly aligned with the flow rates specified for each area of the system, creating the appropriate temperature outcome. When the systems are not in balance, flow is distributed unevenly, meaning some areas have surplus whilst others are lacking and creating unreliable heat or cooling facility. The balancing valves or dampers are the only way of ensuring proper distribution, although in the past it was believed that manipulating the pipe dimensions could have the same effect. Modern automatic balancing valves regulate the flow without being affected by any pressure changes elsewhere in the system.

Not only should good quality systems be installed for these needs, they also need regular maintenance to ensure they are working at their peak. Annual maintenance is recommended for most systems, especially in corporate or industrial locations. Wear and tear on the heating and cooling components can dramatically impede their efficiency.

How the right heating system can help to focus your workers

Whether you are heating an office space or a warehouse, heating can have a profound effect on your employees and how they work. It is beneficial for you as an employer to ensure that you provide a comfortable working environment in terms of temperature for your staff to get the best out of them during working hours. Staff are not the best at working efficiently if the environment they are in is too hot or even too cold. There is no legal maximum or minimum but HSE recommends that when working inside, for example in an office space, the ideal temperature should be no lower than 16 degrees celsius.

In working conditions where the working environment is too cold, your staff will begin to struggle to concentrate and as a result will not be working or focusing on the job at hand. Being overly cold can make you feel incredibly uncomfortable and makes it very difficult for you to focus on working efficiently. Equally if your working environment is too hot then you will also not be able to work efficiently as heat can cause fatigue and exhaustion. As an employer, an ideal heating system is clearly a must have to get the best out of your employees.

At TPS we sell a variety of heating systems that will regulate the temperature of your working environment. Our heating systems such as our radiant tube heating, electrical heating and warm air space heating can make your working environment far more comfortable whether you work in an office or in a warehouse space. Our team are available and on hand for you to talk to about your heating requirements and they can advise you on what heating system is going to give your employees the best working environment.

Often employers don’t consider heating systems and often try to save money by not heating environments leaving their staff cold, uncomfortable and irritable but most of all unfocused. A well heated office will save you money in the long run as your staff will be far more productive. You will find that your warehouse staff are working harder, packing more parcels or your office staff are hitting targets and exceeding them. Don’t underestimate the impact an environment has on people’s motivation and focus.

If you want to get more out of your staff and have them focus more then contact us at TPS today to discuss your heating needs.