Category Archive: HVAC

Process of Asbestos Removal

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Asbestos is widely used in many building materials due to its exceptional heat resistance and binding properties. It is also considered a practical component for floor tile, roofing and flashing, bricks, pipes, insulation, and asbestos concrete.

However, the process of removing asbestos exposes people to asbestos fibers that pose significant health hazards. These fibers can cause asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma. Thus, understanding careful and proper asbestos removal steps is critical to avoid asbestos-related diseases.

This article will walk you through the asbestos abatement process and explain why hiring asbestos professionals is essential.

What Is the Asbestos Abatement Process?

Asbestos abatement removes or reduces the harmful effects of asbestos. It usually starts with inspecting materials for the presence of asbestos before assessing the associated danger level. This process does not always require removal when the asbestos is untouched and intact. However, it is crucial to properly abate the material if there is a significant risk present.

The process of asbestos abatement includes the following steps:

1.    Preparing the Work Area

The affected area must be closed off with barricades to keep people away, and the workers must implement warning signs. In addition, specialists must seal all air ducts, turn off HVAC systems, and install airtight plastic barriers and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration blowers. These procedures will keep asbestos fibers from contaminating the environment outside the affected area while creating negative pressure within the compartment. Also, air monitors must be installed to determine the concentration of fibers in the air during the process of removing asbestos.

2.    Removing the Asbestos Material

The experts will remove the asbestos-containing materials with a hand tool or wet methods before being bagged and prepared for proper disposal. Alternative approaches, such as encapsulating and containing asbestos fibers in an impenetrable jacket or wrap, may also be used. However, a complete removal is strongly advised to reduce the likelihood of future complications.

3.    Cleanup and Air Testing

After removing a significant portion of the contamination, the work area will undergo a fine cleaning process. First, an encapsulant will be applied to surfaces to trap microscopic particles or fibers that might remain in the air. Asbestos removal experts will then use HEPA vacuums to re-clean the space before testing the surrounding air for asbestos residue.

HEPA vacuuming is used in asbestos removal steps to reduce fiber dispersal and clean surfaces.

4.    Disposal

Once asbestos residue presence is ruled out, abatement contractors will take the contaminated material to a designated disposal site while following the region’s protocols for properly removing asbestos waste.

5.    Post-Cleanup

When the work area is cleared, the workers will remove the barriers and prepare the site for re-occupation. Finally, the abatement contractor will provide waste shipment records, permits, licensing copies, inspection results, and laboratory analysis reports to ensure compliance with environmental standards.

Why Is It Important To Hire Asbestos Professionals?

Improper asbestos handling can result in health-threatening exposure. This is one of the main reasons only asbestos abatement professionals must manage, remove, and dispose of asbestos-contaminated materials. Professionals and experts should properly close off affected areas, clean up equipment, test the air, and dispose of the material to minimize the risk of exposure to harmful substances.

Another reason is that different laws and government agencies regulate the handling of asbestos. These include the following:

Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA)

The AHERA is an Environmental Protection Agency regulation requiring institutions such as schools to inspect facilities and establishments for the presence of asbestos-containing material. It also aims to establish plans to minimize health risks posed by the material.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Regulations

OSHA regulations protect workers from asbestos exposure above a specific limit. The Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) for asbestos is 0.1 fiber per cc. This limit means that workers’ exposure to asbestos must not exceed 0.1 f/cc of air in an average of over 8-hour work shifts.

Asbestos National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP)

The asbestos NESHAP regulations require work practices to be observed during demolitions and renovations of all structures, installations, and buildings. These buildings exclude residential ones that have four or fewer dwelling units. The regulation also requires the building owner or operator to alert the appropriate state agency before demolishing or renovating buildings that may contain a certain amount of asbestos.

Furthermore, certain manufacturing and fabrication operations are either prohibited from emitting visible emissions into the outside air or must adhere to air cleaning procedures. This regulation also includes specific requirements for asbestos-containing waste removal.

Waco’s Safe and Effective Asbestos Abatement Services

As certified asbestos abatement contractors, Waco is dedicated to meeting our customer’s needs securely and effectively. We guarantee that all processes follow all local, state, and federal regulations and guidelines.

Our company currently provides asbestos removal services in Virginia, including Richmond, Northern Virginia, Norfolk, Hampton, Roanoke, Virginia Beach, and Harrisonburg. We also cater to abatement needs in Washington, DC and a wide range of locations in the Mid-Atlantic region.

We are dedicated to providing exceptional customer service at every process stage. Contact us today to learn more about our asbestos removal services, or request a quote now!

What Is an Industrial HVAC System?

HVAC projectWaco Inc. offers complete HVAC systems that include: fabrication, installation, renovation, and replacement services. With over 50 years of experience, our highly qualified technicians have what it takes to handle large commercial buildings and industrial facilities , from replacing a single chiller to renovating an entire HVAC system.

The term “industrial HVAC” can refer to an HVAC system used in an industrial facility, or a more general term for an HVAC system used in a large building like a hospital or large business. At Waco, Inc, our specialty lies with HVAC services for industrial facilities, and we’ve put together this guide for existing and potential customers. It outlines the types of equipment used and how they differ from residential units.

HVAC Systems for Industrial vs Residential

Industrial HVAC systems provide heating, cooling, and ventilation to larger facilities, such as chemical processing, manufacturing, power generation, and water treatment plants. While they follow the same basic operating principles as residential HVAC units, they are greater in capacity and complexity. Additional concerns such as excessive heat generation from equipment or toxic fumes, require greater attention than one would expect from a residential or commercial building. That’s why it is essential to partner with an experienced industrial contractor when you want to upgrade or replace a system. They will have the knowledge and skills to ensure that the entire HVAC systems components function correctly as it pertains to the individual facility’s needs.

Types of Equipment Required fwhat is an industrial HVAC systemor HVAC Systems in Industrial Facilities

Industrial HVAC systems consist of many components, which vary depending on the specific needs of the facility. The types of equipment commonly found in them include:

Compressors

In HVAC systems, compressors reduce the volume of refrigerant gas, which increases its pressure and temperature. The high-pressure, high-temperature gas then enters the HVAC system’s condenser, which removes the heat it absorbed.

Air Separators

Air separators separate and remove entrained air from fluids. This function helps keep HVAC systems running efficiently and safely.

Chillers

Chillers use water to transfer heat away from a space. They are available in two variations: water-cooled and air-cooled.

Control Systems

Control systems allow users to monitor and manage the operation of various elements within an HVAC system. Automated control systems enable any necessary HVAC system changes (e.g., increased or decreased temperature or airflow) to be made automatically.

Cooling Towers

Cooling towers are used in combination with chillers or condensers to remove heat from the facility. Their design and size vary depending on the cooling load of the facility.

HVAC Fans

Industrial facilities use fans for a variety of purposes. For example, they are used for exhaust, air intake, ventilation, and more.

Boilers/Furnaces

Hot water or steam must be produced and maintained at much greater volumes in industrial facilities. Sizing and piping to the boiler is critical.

Humidification/Dehumidification Systems

HVAC systems can be used to control humidity within an industrial facility. If the facility requires more moisture, the system may have a humidifier unit. If the facility requires less moisture, the system may have a dehumidifier unit.

Industrial Ventilation Systems

In addition to temperature and humidity, industrial HVAC systems are used to establish proper airflow within a facility. The ventilation components help purify and circulate air as needed.

Heat Pumps

Heat pumps extract heat from the air, water, or ground. They can be used to heat or cool a facility.

Rooftop HVAC Units

Rooftop HVAC units are installed on the roof of facilities. They use ducts to circulate the air into various zones of the facility.

Split HVAC Units

HVAC systems can be categorized into single-split and multi-split units. Single-split units require each indoor unit to have a corresponding outdoor unit, while multi-split units allow multiple indoor units to connect to one outdoor unit.

How Do Residential and Industrial HVAC Systems Differ?

Industrial HVAC systems operate similarly to residential HVAC systems. The main differences between them are:

  • Capacity. HVAC systems components for industrial facilities are much larger. A home or business might use a 5-ton unit while an industrial facility might use a 50 ton unit. Note: 1 ton is equivalent to 12,000 btu of cooling.
  • Location. HVAC systems at industrial facilities are generally located on the rooftop of facilities or in a courtyard where both noise and heat can be reduced while in operation. Most residential HVAC systems are commonly located near the home on the ground floor.
  • Complexity. HVAC systems at industrial locations are more complex and modular in design than residential HVAC systems. This means that multiple HVAC units will have all of the electrical and automatic controls in one panel box. This is critical for proper climate control and any adjusting as required.

HVAC System Solutions at Waco, Inc.

The experts at Waco, Inc. are here to help with your industrial facility’s HVAC needs. Whether you require a new installation or replacement assistance, we’ve got you covered. To learn more about our HVAC system capabilities, contact us today. To discuss your project requirements with one of our representatives, request a quote.