Vertical heat recovery units: 5 benefits and incentives for your next installation

Could a vertical heat recovery unit (HRU) make your building – and the planet – a healthier, happier place to be?

When it comes to making a property more energy efficient and reducing its carbon footprint, few choices will have a bigger impact than its heating and cooling system. At the same time, there is an increasing awareness of the dangers of poor air quality and the need to provide healthier indoor environments. That’s why HRUs have never been in a stronger position.

Here are five environmental benefits and incentives for choosing a vertical HRU in your next retrofit or new build project.

1 Use less energy

With up to 90% efficiency, our vertical heat recovery units include heat exchangers and can therefore retain up to 85% of your property’s energy.

Further steps can also be taken to ensure a HRU operates at its maximum possible efficiency. Selecting a unit fitted with EC motors will enable lower energy usage than those using traditional brush motors. A top-up heater battery can also raise the temperature from the plate heat exchanger, ensuring fresh air is delivered at the correct temperature for the space.

2 Generate lower greenhouse gas emissions

According to government figures, the built environment makes up 25% of the UK’s total greenhouse gas emissions.

If your building currently relies on central heating or other high energy options, a vertical heat recovery unit can make a noticeable impact in your carbon footprint. HRUs provide heat without any need to use gas. To compound that benefit, the electricity needed to power a HRU can be generated from 100% clean and renewable sources. Installing a HRU is an easy way to contribute to creating a more sustainable planet and help the UK meet its target of a 68% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030.

3 Enjoy increased indoor air quality

Poor air quality is one of the biggest health issues facing the industrialised world and tackling dangerous levels of pollutants is a key aim of the World Health Organization, which has set a target for PM2.5 of 10 µg/m3 (WHO-10) by 2030.

In indoor environments, poor air quality can contribute to both allergies and respiratory problems. But modern HRUs are equipped to handle this issue much more effectively than traditional ventilation systems.

HRUs installed today contain powerful filters that remove allergens and pollutants before they have a chance to circulate in your building, thereby protecting those living and working in the property from potentially severe health consequences. They are also designed to operate with 100% fresh air, so contaminated internal air is never recirculated.

4 Access financial incentives

In recent years, the UK government has used financial incentives to try to encourage the installation of vertical heat recovery units. Schemes like the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and the Green Homes Grant were powerful persuaders, convincing many to make the necessary investment.

Today, those schemes are no longer active. But the government is still planning to spend the surplus budget allocated to those schemes on other green measures. Keep an eye out for local authority grants: these are expected to come increasingly to the fore.

5 Mitigate the effects of global warming

Temperature extremes are part of our new reality. In the summer of 2022, the UK baked in temperatures exceeding 40°C. The following year saw July 2023 confirmed as the hottest month ever recorded. The global mean surface air temperature record was broken on four consecutive days.

Thankfully, heat recovery units are dual purpose. As well as providing heat during the colder months, they can also cool a property’s air during warmer periods. This is likely to prove invaluable if further heat waves occur.

It’s time to invest in vertical heat recovery units

If you’re looking for a heating and cooling solution that improves air quality, minimises energy use, and creates a more sustainable environment, vertical HRUs are your best choice.

View our full range of market-leading vertical HRUs today.

Air handling units: how to cut costs by up to 50% through refurbishment and repair

We’re all feeling it: the cost-of-living crisis has gone beyond our personal wallets and is now impacting businesses of all sizes across the UK.

If you’re a business owner or manager, you’ll be looking to save money wherever possible – without impacting on your overall operations. But maintenance and running costs still mount up, especially with large investments like air handling units.

Money saving maintenance for air handling units

AVT’s refurbishment and repair services have been specifically designed to save you money and boost your environmental credentials.

Instead of replacing faulty air handling units with brand new machines, the expert engineers in our Site Engineering Services (SES) department can diagnose, repair, and refurbish units that are starting to show signs of deterioration.

At the end of the process, you’re left with a perfectly working unit – often at only half the expense of a brand-new system. And you’ve saved the environmental impact of scrapping an AHU that still had plenty of life in it.

Here’s how it works in five simple steps:

  1. First, we come to inspect the unit and complete a comprehensive site survey.
  2. Next comes the planning. Our engineers will itemise all the necessary parts and draw up a schedule of works, giving everyone a clear understanding of what’s needed and what timetable we’re working to.
  3. Our assembly options are designed to make everything as efficient as possible. Parts will either be flat-packed or sub-assembled.
  4. With everything in place, our team can recommission your air handling unit and issue an updated technical specification.
  5. Finally, we’ll safely recycle or dispose of any old parts that were removed from your unit.

AHU refurbishments and repairs

Our team was recently called out to an air handling unit that had been operational for 25 years. It’s fair to say it had seen better days.

But no challenge is too big for our SES team. They quickly identified the upgrades, modifications and new parts that were needed. The full programme of works included:

  • Updating the appearance by installing smart new external panels
  • Replacing old belt-drive AC fans with new energy-efficient EC motors
  • Fitting a new gas burner and DX coils
  • Installing replacement filters and a new control package

We could easily do the same for you!

Find out more about booking our AHU refurbishment and repair services.

How to reduce your energy bills in 2023 with good ventilation

Could good ventilation be the way to lower your energy bills as the UK’s battles with the cost-of-living crisis?

For many people, ventilation might not seem an obvious starting point when energy prices are sky high. But improving a building’s ventilation can significantly contribute to reducing energy bills.

If you’re a residential developer, homeowner, or commercial building owner, investing in good ventilation could be a strategic and prudent choice as energy costs continue to soar. Here are three of the most effective ways to use ventilation to put more money in your pocket.

Install modern heat recovery units

Investing in a modern heat recovery unit has two main impacts. First, it improves the air quality and thermal comfort inside a property. But it also helps to reduce your overall energy costs, because fitting a system with a heat exchanger can mean up to 85% of your property’s energy is retained.

The heat exchanger acts as a highly efficient way to maintain internal temperatures. As stale air leaves your building, the heat exchanger captures the warmth from that outgoing air. It then transfers that warm energy to the cool air coming into your building from the outside. Heat recovery units can dramatically reduce a building’s reliance on central heating or other high energy options.

Choose heat recovery units with pre-heaters
If the air from the outside is particularly cold, this can place a greater strain on the heat exchanger. But there is an answer. A pre-heater on a heat recovery unit cools the outdoor air before it reaches the heat exchanger, thereby making it easier and quicker to heat it to the required internal temperature.

Use EC motors in your heat recovery unit
While a typical heat recovery unit is very efficient at retaining heat, it still needs energy to power it. Choosing a heat recovery unit fitted with EC motors helps to improve the operational efficiency of the unit because the motors can run at lower temperatures than traditional brush motors. As a result, the overall energy spend for running the heat recovery unit is lower than if you opt for a model without EC motors.

Air Vent Technology’s range of heat recovery units features some of the best and most energy efficient models on the UK market. View the full range today.

Commercial ventilation: why air handling units are the only sensible choice

When it comes to temperature and humidity control in commercial buildings, air handling units are now widely regarded as the most effective solution for creating a consistently healthy environment. In this article, you’ll learn about the benefits of air handling units, the key considerations for choosing one, and start to understand the different options available on the commercial ventilation market.

The benefits of installing air handling units in commercial settings

Companies who invest in an appropriate air handling unit enjoy two immediate benefits, both of which are critical to short-, medium- and long-term success.

  • Excellent working environment. Lots of people don’t realise that circulating air can be cleaned by an air handling unit. The humidity of the air can also be adjusted, creating the perfect working atmosphere. Both of those two advantages come on top of the traditional heating or cooling of air, giving you complete control over your indoor environment.
  • Better health outcomes. With stale air eradicated, problematic developments such as mould and condensation are also significantly reduced or resolved entirely. This prevents both your staff and any visitors from experiencing troublesome allergic reactions and avoids future spends on professional mould removal.

Air handling unit installation: the key considerations

Identifying the best air handling units for your property can seem daunting at first, especially when our full range includes 29 models and the option for fully bespoke designs where necessary. But two simple principles will quickly help to guide you to a sensible choice.

  • Where will it be installed? Your setting will go a long way to determining the type of air handling unit you need. For example, buying an air handling unit for a large, open manufacturing unit would be very different to buying an air handling unit for a small, enclosed office.
  • Do you have appropriate installation space? As well as checking the size of your potential installation space, do you also have appropriate access to get the unit in place? With small units, doors and corridors may be large enough for the unit to be delivered already assembled. For larger units, flat-pack installation may be the only suitable option.

How to choose air handling units

Once you’ve got a firm understanding of what you’re looking for, choosing the best air handling unit for your needs is relatively straightforward.

Get the complete package with Air Vent Technology

Whichever air handling unit you require, our experienced team is ready to provide all the assistance you need.

Our Site Engineering Services (SES) team is trusted across the UK to install and maintain commercial air handling units of all shapes and sizes. Whether it’s refurbishment and repair, ongoing servicing, or flat-pack installation, we’ve got you covered!

Contact us today and take the first step towards an exciting new air handling unit for your commercial property.

Improving Indoor air quality in commercial buildings during Winter

Good air quality in any work environment is a crucial consideration when it comes to the winter months. Casual forms of ventilation, such as opening windows and doors, let in cold air and often aren’t sufficient. To make the winter months as comfortable and safe as possible, consider investing in your heat recovery unit.

In this blog we’re going to run through a few important reasons ventilation in the winter should be high on your list and a few tips to make sure your ventilation is up to standards.

Most contemporary buildings have been built to ensure they have excellent insulation to reduce energy bills. Whilst this is a huge positive in the current climate, it can come with a drawback. If you put together the lack of opening windows and great insulation, this leaves very little room for air to flow in and out, which means air recirculation is more likely to occur.

If an internal environment has recirculated air there will be more chance of contaminants such as airborne illnesses, dust, mould spores, and odours to be present. This increases the risk of illnesses.

Here’s a few things your business could do to keep the issues at bay:

Ensure your ventilation system is up to the latest standards

You’re one step ahead if you already have a good ventilation system in place, however its equally as important to make sure it continues to run at high efficiency. That’s why we recommend implementing a maintenance plan.
Our engineers conduct routine checks for your ventilation system to make sure it’s running well throughout the year. Having a routine check to make sure all parts are doing their job will mean there is less chance of breakdown or underperformance – therefore reducing risk.

Look at getting a heat-recovery ventilation unit

Heat recovery units are designed to extract stale air and replace it with fresher air from the outside whilst also ensuring there is minimal heat loss. So really, this will solve all problems relating to air recirculation whilst also keeping the people inside nice and warm.

As we spend more time indoors and the chances of flu and colds increases looking at your building ventilation will be beneficial to all. Even though it seems like you should accumulate as much warm air as possible indoors, ventilation is still key. If you don’t exchange your stuffy air with new, fresh air, then a variety of problems will emerge.

These are just some of the things you can do to improve indoor air quality in winter. If you have more concerns or questions regarding indoor air quality and your ventilation system, then feel free to contact us and we’ll address them for you.