2016 January

Survival of the pickiest

08 January, 2016

Being selective about bidding is a positive step for the industry, says John Daly of LJJ

boiler, space, heating, DHW, BSRIA, Evinox, heat interface unit, HIU

Evinox’s ModuSat heat interface units (HIUs) have been independently tested by BSRIA and surpassed the benchmark requirements set out in the CIBSE ‘Heat network code of practice’ for both duty and return-temperature performance. The results demonstrate that ModuSat units can achieve a ∆T of up to 65 K between flow and return temperatures, thus optimising the efficiency of a heat network.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, condensate, Sentinel Commercial

Sentinel Commercial’s Condensafe C4000 device is designed to neutralise condensation from commercial condensing boilers. It is designed to fit into a standard 40 mm ABS/PVCu waste pipe drain and is fitted with universal couplers to accommodate all makes of plastic pipe with a diameter of 40 mm.

boilers, space, heating, DHW, Remeha

Heating and hot-water services for 54 flats and communal areas in sheltered accommodation in Bath can now meet the demand following an increase in the size of the gas-supply pipework, which was inadequate before, and the installation of two Remeha Gas 210 Eco Pro 4-section condensing boilers and two direct gas-fired water heaters. Combe Park Almshouse is the latest addition to the St John’s Hospital’s portfolio of almshouses.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Hoval, district heating

As district heating increases in popularity it is important to pay close attention to every aspect of the system design if optimum performance is to be achieved. Geoff Lord of Hoval explains.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Advance Appliances, thermal store

Advance Appliances has updated its SFUTS multi-fuel thermal store by fitting and pre-wiring two electronic timers to it. The first timer is for the boiler to avoid overnight firing. The second is for the wood-burner input, with the timer turning off the pump on this circuit so that all the captured heat is kept in the store and not recirculated through the wood burner.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Mikrofill

Hampshire’s first ‘super school’ has its heating and hot-water requirements met by a number of boilers from Mikrofill. They comprise numerous Ethos wall-mounted 90 and 110 kW condensing boilers.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Potterton Commercial

Trying to plan for five, 10, or 15 years from now is tough in any business — but never more so when the heat is on to specify and build a commercial project to time and budget. However, making smart choices at the design stage is vital to cost efficiencies and, ultimately, return on investment. Neville Small at Potterton Commercial, explains why investing in quality products and equipment makes for a better project in the long run. 

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Elco UK

On paper at least, 2016 should be a ‘business as usual’ year for the commercial heating sector, but could this be the year where we see boilers specified in a new way? Could they now take on a supporting role to alternative heating technologies such as CHP? If so, what are the key elements of a system to consider? Gavin Watson of Elco UK, looks at the options.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Remeha Commercial

Making the gas go further

05 January, 2016

With gas looking to be an even more important fuel for generating electricity, James Porter of Remeha Commercial, examines the role of the condensing boiler in making the UK’s gas supplies go further.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Ideal Commercial Boilers

Andrew Dabin of Ideal Commercial Boilers, reflects on the challenges facing building-services engineers who are undertaking boiler retrofit projects post-ErP and how manufacturers can help uncover solutions that will minimise capital outlay whilst delivering a high-efficiency heating system.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, biomass, renewable energy, wood pellet, Windhager

A Scottish hotel on the banks of Loch Ness has slashed its heating and hot-water costs following the installation of two wood-pellet boilers to completely replace LPG boilers and electric storage heaters. The combination of fuel-cost savings and payments from the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) amounts to about £26 700 a year and are almost evenly split.

boiler, heating, space, DHW, dry cycling, Sabien Technolgy

Preventing boiler dry cycling at the King’s Cross Hospital in Dundee has achieved average fuel savings of 7% with a payback of 1.8 years. Sabien Technology verified the savings for its M2G boiler-load optimisation controls for NHS Tayside.

boiler, space, heating, DHW, Hamworthy Heating

Technologies such as combined heat and power and biomass boilers should not be regarded as distractions to ensuring that the gas-fired boiler plant that is still required operates as part of an efficient system — even before other technologies are added. Stuart Turner of Hamworthy Heating gives an insight.

commissioning, balancing, SAV Systems, valve, TRV

The PT40 range of radiator control valves from SAV Systems helps to reduce energy waste in heat networks by ensuring that radiator systems are well balanced. These TRV sets are presettable to a flow-rate limit at each radiator, in line with the CIBSE ‘Heat networks code of practice’, eliminating the need for traditional balancing.

commissioning, balancing, tracer dye, pre-commission cleaning, Water Treatment Products

The addition of a tracer dye to its products for pre-commission cleaning is said by Water Treatment Products to be a major step forward. WTP tracer dye enables contractors to accurately measure the concentration of chemical cleaners as they are added to the system

commissioning, balancing, Siemens, PICV

The only information needed to the size of Siemens Acvatix PICV (pressure-independent control valve) is the required flow through it, saving time for the specifier. These valves automatically shield against pressure fluctuations in a network to maintain a constant flow. The are available in sizes from 15 to 150 mm (a 50 mm size is pictured).

commissioning, balancing, manifolds, Marflow Hydronics, fan coil unit

Grouping a number of terminal units together with a manifold offers major benefits for installation and commissioning. Nick Martin of Marflow Hydronics takes a look at their real advantages.

commissioning, balancing, EPIV, Belimo

Belimo’s EPIV pressure-independent characterised-control valve is available in sizes from DN15 to DN150. These valves combine the four functions of measuring, controlling, hydraulic balancing and bubble-tight closing. They provide real-time information of the measured flow rate.

commissioning, balancing, Albion Valves

What do the performance gap and uncomfortable buildings that are energy inefficient have in common. Paul Wightman of Albion Valves believes poorly balanced systems are often to blame.

commissioning, balancing, Hydraquip, double shut off coupling

Hydraquip has launched a new range of double-shut-off couplings for the commercial H&V and air-conditioning sectors. Hydraquick couplings can be connected and disconnected without having to shut down or drain the system. Terminal units can also be looped out during the flushing process.

commissioning, balancing, Commissioning Specialists Association, DPCV, PICV, EPIV

‘Self-balancing valves’ and ‘automatic balancing valves’ means that there is no need for a commissioning engineer. Right? Tony Anderson, chairman of the Commissioning Specialists’ Association’s training committee believes that the commissioning engineer’s role is more important than ever.

chiller, York, Johnson Controls

The transactional web site launched by Johnson Controls a year ago to enable engineers to purchase spares on line has proved to be a multi-million success. The EasyParts web site enables engineers to purchase major spares such as compressor rotors, valves and motors online. Top-selling items such as oil filters, sensors and chiller safety devices are all easily accessible. Orders placed before 14.30 h can be delivered next day.

Nortek Global HVAC, packaged heating and cooling unit, space heating, cooling

Nortek Global HVAC, a UK supplier of gas-fired warm-air heating and ventilation systems, has launched the P125 packaged cooling and heating unit. This range of units has been developed utilising the proven engineering expertise gained by Reznor with over 125 years’ experience of manufacturing HVAC equipment.

Diffusion, Trend, BMS, BEMS, control

Diffusion Fan Coil Controls Solutions has been appointed a Trend OEM partner. Combining Diffusion’s high-efficiency EC fan coils with the latest Trend ECO controls can provide a cost-effective fully packaged fan-coil solution, incorporating Diffusion’s energy-saving strategy.

Rinnai, DHW

Rinnai UK, which supplies continuous-flow water heaters, has a dedicated service team to offer customers, including end users, help and advice throughout the complete lifecycle of a project. The team can respond to any queries on specification, installation and operation of Rinnai units.

Argus Fire, Project Fire, fire protection, fire detection

Argus Fire has signed up to become a reseller of Project Fire technology. Argus Fire is one of the UK’s largest sprinkler design and installation companies with Level 4 standard approval from the Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB).

Riello, burner, CPD

Riello has confirmed that its popular CIBSE-accredited CPD courses on specifying pressure-jet burners, optimising their performance and specifying gas boosters will continue through 2016. The courses can be delivered at a specifier’s own premises or at Riello’s training centre in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire.

A-Gas International, refrigerants

A-Gas International, which specialises in chemicals and gases such as refrigerants, has moved to new offices in the Bristol. The company is now at 7 and 8 Gordano Court, Serbert Close, Portishead, Bristol, BS20 7FS. The move means that A-Gas International is now based on one site in the Bristol area and can also offer new facilities for training.

Ex-Or, CentraLine, Honeywell

The control of lighting in a commercial building is inextricably linked with the HVAC services of occupied spaces.

Honeywell, CentraLine

Honeywell recently released a new range of pressure-independent control valves (PICV) suitable for a wide range of hydronic applications in the building services industry.

amBX, PoE, Power over Ethernet, lighting, control, LED

The low power requirements of LEDs means that power and control can be delivered using the same cabling opens up huge new possibilities for lighting — as John Niebel of amBX explains.

Mitsubishi Electric, air conditioning, chilled water

Ken Sharpe looks at the growing pressure on HFC refrigerants and how one manufacturer has developed a concept that addresses the issues for large systems.

Xpelair, indoor air quality, IAQ, ventilation

Top of the class

05 January, 2016

David Perry of Xpelair looks at the importance of indoor air quality (IAQ) in schools and what to consider made when specifying ventilation systems in the education sector.

Building Engineering Services Association, B&ES, HVCA, training, skills, Mike Hammond

People already working in the building engineering services sector could play a major role in tackling a growing skills crisis, says Peter Rimmer of the Building Engineering Services Association.

Remeha, boiler, space heating

When Brighton Youth Centre was faced with closure as its heating boiler began to fail, Remeha Commercial stepped in with the gift of a Gas 110 Eco condensing boiler, which was installed by TSS Facilities. A multi-services charity, the centre offers an important service to Brighton’s young people with a programme of classes, clubs and events, in addition to regular youth-club sessions.

BSRIA, HIU, Heat interface unit

BSRIA has launched a test standard for heat interface units (HIUs) to fill a gap in the UK market by providing a method to demonstrate the performance of HIUs and compare products across a range of thermal parameters for different applications. The standard will serve as a reference point for manufacturers, contractors and end users and will help create confidence in the industry.


Jo Harris, head of BSRIA’s sustainable-construction group, has been made a fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Fewer than 20% of RICS members have been awarded fellowship status, which demonstrates significant career achievements and successes, a passion for developing the industry, sharing knowledge and supporting others to reach their goals.


The RIBA future trends workload index increased significantly in November, rising to +27 (up from +18 in October).This figure suggests that confidence levels within the profession have stabilised towards the end of the year. All nations and regions in the UK returned positive balance figures.

REL Electrical, contractor

REL Electrical has won a £1.1 million contract for the design and build of MEP (mechanical, electrical and plumbing) services for a 2300 m2 extension at AXA Healthcare’s head office in Tunbridge Wells. The overall project is worth £5 million and will provide three floors of open-plan office space and 360 workstations.

Grundfos Pumps

Grundfos Pumps has received a United Nations’ ‘Momentum for change’ award for its Lifelink automated pump system to provide remote villages and communities with guaranteed and continuous access to clean water. The system received one of six awards in the category ‘Information and communications technologies’ for integrating technology into its approach to supply a sustainable water supply in Kenya and Uganda.

The shortlist for the 13 categories of the 2016 Building Performance Awards has been announced. It is based on the best set of entries and evidence of measured performance to date. Hywel Davies, technical director of the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers, which organises he awards, explains, ‘Our awards are unique because they judge how a building performs, not just its design, and we were struck this year by the varied approaches taken, which made judging challenging and interesting.

SEC Group, Rudi Klein

Professor Rudi Klein, chief executive of the Specialist Engineering Contractors’ (SEC) Group, has received the Clare Edwards award for outstanding contribution to the practice of construction law. It is conferred annually by the Technology & Construction Court Solicitors’ Association and the Contractors’ Legal Group ‘for professional excellence and contribution to the legal profession serving the construction industry’ — only when an exceptional candidate has been identified.

Kershaw, maintenance, contractor

Kershaw Mechanical Services has won the 5-year contract to manage Harborough District Council’s M&E maintenance and repairs across its estate of properties in Leicestershire. The work is the responsibility of the company’s service and maintenance division and includes Harborough Market, the Harborough Innovation Centre and The Symington Building (pictured), which accommodates the council offices and other services and organisations.


The value of new projects starting on site (excluding projects valued at over £100 million) was 4% lower during the three months to November than a year earlier, according to figures from Glenigan. There were declines in both residential (-2%) and non-residential (-4%), but the overall figures were made worse by an 8% decline in civil engineering.

SPIE, contractor

SPIE has been appointed principal contractor for the capital-plant replacement works at the Shell tower building near Waterloo Station in London, As part of the project, the SPIE Building Services London and south east division will be responsible for the replacement of all major mechanical and electrical works serving the existing building, which will create an opportunity for other redevelopment works in the surrounding area.

Turner & Townsend

Turner & Townsend’s involvement in delivery of the Wellcome-Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine at Queen’s University Belfast included several life-cycle costing studies and helping to adapt ‘Soft landings’ for the project. The overall aim is to help the university achieve its target of reducing CO2 emissions by 21% by 2020.

Robertson, contractor

School pupils in Glasgow have made their first steps towards becoming engineers by completing a course designed to encourage careers in the industry. The ‘Get into engineering’ scheme was a collaboration between Robertson Group, Clyde Gateway and University West of Scotland and saw 10 pupils engage in practical projects across a 3-month period.


Interserve has started site work on an £11.5 million research centre for the Ogden Centre for Fundamental Physics at Durham University. The building has been designed by Daniel Libeskind, the architect behind the redevelopment of New York’s World Trade Center.

climate change, COP21, Global warming

The pressure, or even incentive, on all countries throughout the world to reduce carbon emissions has taken a major step forward with the agreement of 195 countries at the recent COP21 conference to ‘pursue efforts to limit the [global] temperature increase to 1.5 K above pre-industrial levels, recognising that this would significantly reduce the risk and impacts of climate change’. The more immediate agreement at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris from 30 November to 11 December was ‘holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 K above pre-industrial levels’.

JG Speedfit, pipe, pipework, plumbing

JG Speedfit has confirmed its 2016 title sponsorship of the GBmoto Kawasaki team competing in the 2016 MCE British Superbike Championship. The debut year saw the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team secure victory in its first race and finish third in the championship. This year the team will compete with the all-new ZX-10R Ninja.

modbs tv logo

Manufacturer helps equip skills centre

Ideal Heating has helped to equip a new £500,000 green energy centre in Merseyside which is seeking to attract fresh talent into the heating industry.

Acoustic solutions suite with easy access to services at University of Birmingham

A suite of ceiling and wall acoustic solutions have been specified for The University of Birmingham’s new landmark Molecular Sciences building, which will provide a hub for research and academic work.