For many of us, 2020 can’t come to a close fast enough! At Springbank Mechanical Systems, we’re excited for 2021 because of the opportunities for companies to take advantage of HVAC technology to make their energy use more efficient without compromising performance.
We’re already seeing large shifts in the industry for two reasons: a demand for better air quality in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the need for sustainable solutions that make building operations more efficient and cost-effective. In both cases, HVAC innovators are ready to answer the call, making 2021 a year where there will be positive, impactful changes to the way companies and commercial property managers heat and cool their buildings.
Here are 6 commercial HVAC trends to watch for in 2021:
- Upgraded air filters: The COVID-19 pandemic put a spotlight on ensuring that the indoor air we breathe is clean and virus free. In 2020, we’ve already seen an upgrade in all filter media because they provide the most cost-efficient way to maintain optimum air quality. No matter how the pandemic plays out, we expect to see filter upgrades to continue through 2021 to help protect the health of building occupants and visitors.
- Upgrading/deep cleaning HVAC equipment: What happens in the mechanical room affects the entire building, especially when it comes to the air that’s flowing through the vents. Upgrading and regularly deep cleaning your HVAC system components, such as the heat exchangers, blower wheels, condenser and evaporator coils, and more is paramount to helping you achieve better air flow rates and improving the indoor air quality throughout the space. These goals will be paramount through 2021 as air quality will remain top of mind for the foreseeable future.
- Proactive approach to HVAC system maintenance: Rising operational costs have been prompting property owners to find proactive ways to reduce expenses not only in system repair and replacement, but also to make their systems more energy efficient. All of this can be achieved with an HVAC maintenance program. Effective maintenance of HVAC systems can decrease energy costs by 5% – 40%, depending on the system or equipment involved, and significantly cut down on repair and replacement costs. As more property managers get on board with the idea of investing in HVAC maintenance programs, expect this market to grow in 2021.
- Shift towards green technology and renewable energy sources: These days, governments are focusing more on green technology than ever before. Stricter environmental regulations will provide incentive for property managers to seek sustainable operating solutions. This will pave the way for the adoption of renewable sources that will allow companies to transition from their existing HVAC systems to hybrid models. The cost benefits offered by these systems, in conjunction with stricter environmental regulations, will shift the market toward renewable energy sources, significantly impacting the HVAC industry. The transition to hybrid is relatively easy, requiring minimum building refurbishment, and will result in large-scale, cost-effective reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
- Increased installation of building automation systems (BAS): BAS technology makes buildings of all shapes, sizes, and configurations more energy efficient, and allows building managers to better oversee their systems. BAS brings control of your HVAC systems into one integrated, easy-to-use interface. Improvements in sensor technology allows for faster response to system alerts through advanced communication tools. Manufacturers are already applying Internet protocols to provide easier, more efficient control solutions which lower overall operating costs and improve air quality. Watch for more companies installing and relying on BAS technology to improve HVAC efficiencies across the board.
- Adoption of mobile HVAC controls: As the world continues to shift towards a more mobile world, 2021 will see mobile technology significantly impact the HVAC industry. We’re already seeing equipment being rolled out that is embedded with mobile functionality in anticipation for the increased demand to make HVAC maintenance more convenient. This technology will enable customers to connect to technicians quickly and easily, and access real-time data for maintenance and support for their systems. Expect mobile functionality to quickly increase once the integrations are complete toward the latter part of next year.
HVAC technology is continually evolving, and as more companies jump on board to adopt more efficient, tech-based solutions, the results will bring them cleaner indoor air quality, a reduction in operating costs, and higher property values. As always, we’re happy to answer your questions about new and upcoming HVAC technology that will make commercial property management easier and more efficient.
Gregg Little, Paul De Thomasis, and Hugo Lopes are co-owners of Springbank Mechanical Systems. They can be reached at 905-569-8990, or via email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or Hugo@springbank.com.