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HVAC Maintenance and the Art of Keeping Cleanrooms Clean

Keeping contamination at or below predetermined acceptable levels is a fundamental requirement of cleanroom maintenance.  Even the tiniest random dust particle is considered a legitimate contaminant.

HVAC systems are by definition a critical component system of any cleanroom environment because they are designed to move air from one area to another with the goal of attaining climate control. This process poses many unique challenges to maintaining air quality.  Part of the HVAC system intricacy is that it’s also comprised of multiple other systems that need to be maintained in order to achieve cleanroom high performance standards safely and effectively.


Here a some steps toward keeping your HVAC system clean:

  • Change Filters Regularly – Cleanrooms contain multiple filtering systems… pre-filters, standard filters, and high efficiency filters…Combined, they virtually guarantee that airflow remains free of contaminants down to sizes under .03 microns.  An adequate filter maintenance program shuld schedule filter cleaning at minimum of four to eight week cycles.
  • Clean Coils Regularly – Clean coils keep the system operating at high efficiency levels as well as mitigating bacterial growth within the system. Clean regularly at planned system shutdown intervals and treat with EPA-registered mold and mildew inhibitors.  Properly maintained coils can play a key role in managing critical humidity levels.
  • Clean Blowers Regularly – Blowers in air handler units (AHU) can be magnets for dirt and debris. Make sure to properly visually inspect and clean these often overlooked, yet critical, components of the HVAC system.
  • Clean Ductwork Routinely-  Often overlooked in normal commercial HVAC systems…but in the case of cleanrooms, duct cleanliness is vital. Inspect and clean all ductwork  when  routine filter changes are performed.
  • Clean Other Major HVAC Components – Cooling towers and boilers, for example. As with all above prescriptions, it helps to maintain peak system efficiency and performance.

 

Of course, all the above should be performed by thoroughly trained and highly qualified technicians. But when done correctly and routinely, the process yields several benefits.

Key Benefits of HVAC Maintenance:

  1. For cleanroom management, it’s a necessity and not an option.
  2. A clean HVAC system reduces energy costs, because it doesn’t need to work as hard to keep up as it would if the system was dirty or filled with debris and other contaminants.
  3. HVAC system potential breakdown or need repair is greatly reduced and controlled. Scheduled and properly performed HVAC system maintenance is much less time-consuming much less expensive than shutting down the system for larger repairs or even replacements.

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