HVAC systems have always label “energy guzzlers”. As a result, the notion of smart HVAC was born, and as a result of the Internet of Things, it has now gone even further. HVAC systems now contain several sensors in addition to simple thermostat control. Automation, predictive maintenance, digital ticketing procedures, and remote asset monitoring send data to the cloud for processing, allowing for energy savings and optimal occupant comfort. You may save up to 10% on energy expenditures while enhancing occupant comfort with IoT intervention in your HVAC systems. But, before we get there, we need to grasp what IoT is and how it works at a high level rapidly.
🖥️ What is the Internet of Things (IoT), and how does it work?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of interconnected, internet-connected gadgets that can collect and transmit data without human interaction.
Sensors/devices, connectivity, data processing, and user interface are the four main components of an IoT system.
- Sensors/Devices: These are physical devices that can gather data and respond to commands. A temperature sensor, for example, can gather and relay data on the temperature of an area.
- Connectivity: As previously stated, the temperature sensor captures and transmits data to the cloud. There are various ways to do this, including cellular, WiFi, Bluetooth, BACnet, and others, all of which link to the internet through a gateway.
- Data Preparation: The data is subsequently analyze in the cloud to make sense of it. It might be as simple as analyzing the temperature data gathered from the sensors to see if it is within permissible limits. What happens if an area’s ambient temperature is outside the acceptable range? The following element enters the picture at this point.
- User-Interface Design: The processed data is subsequently displayed on a user-friendly interface. It can give in the form of an alert sent via email, SMS, or other means to prompt users to take corrective action to maintain the proper temperature.
This path does not have a one-way restriction. Instructions or data requests can also be given to the devices/sensors in the picture via the user interface. The user can modify the temperature of that specific area using the user interface in this case. Furthermore, such systems can be automated to respond to certain conditions based on predetermined criteria.
If it hasn’t already, the Internet of Things will infiltrate practically every area of our lives and enterprises. The wide range of IoT applications is sufficient motivation. Let’s look into IoT interventions in HVAC systems, their applications, and their benefits.
🖥️ Involvement of the Internet of Things in an HVAC system
The use of IoT in the low side of the HVAC system allows for temperature-based modulation of variable frequency drives (VFD). It also chilled water valves and scheduling and duty cycling of the AHUs. It allows modulation of the chiller and secondary pump based on leaving water temperature (LWT) and pressure sensors, respectively, on the high end.
Both low and high-side interventions reduce needless HVAC machine runtime. This is to save energy while providing a comfortable environment for the occupants. This HVAC intervention can save you up to ten percent of your monthly electricity bill.
🖥️ Internet of Things (IoT) in HVAC
1. HVAC operations automation
HVAC operations can automate via the Internet of Things. Sensors in an IoT-powered HVAC system collect information from various sources. Such as ambient temperature, humidity, air quality, chiller return and leaving water temperature, and so on. It also sends data to the cloud via a gateway controller. This data is then processed. It will sent as instructions to devices such as VFDs, Valve cards, and Relays retrofitted across an existing HVAC system. The chilled water valve, secondary pump, condenser pump, and other HVAC system components are modulated due to these instructions. While reading this may appear to be a lengthy and complicated procedure, it all happens in seconds and without the need for any personal intervention.
Consider the following scenario: In venues like hotels, guest comfort is a priority, optimizing business efficiency by avoiding unnecessary costs. An IoT-powered HVAC system ensures optimal guest comfort while reducing wasteful runtime according to the procedure outlined above. When no one in the room or the ideal ambient temperature has reach, for example, it’s pointless to keep the HVAC running.
2. Predictive Maintenance
Nobody wants to be a hotel owner whose air conditioning system malfunctions on a hot summer day. That is why it is vital to maintain such critical equipment to ensure that the equipment’s operation. The value/services gained from these operations are not disrupted.
Traditional maintenance, also known as preventive maintenance, is when equipment services are perform in response to reactive signs, such as when a piece of equipment stops working, or time-based indicators, such as after a particular amount of time has passed. Predictive maintenance, which is a proactive strategy, is far more successful. As the name implies, it forecasts when a piece of equipment requires maintenance to avoid unexpected equipment failure. Rather than a time-based or reactive approach, it is based on parameters such as the real status of assets and equipment.
Such proactive maintenance is possible thanks to IoT interventions in HVAC systems. To watch for early problem detection, it employs sensors to measure vibration. As well as the energy meters to examine voltage imbalance, power factors, and other factors. If there are any anomalies, the maintenance team is notify via digital ticketing workflows, along with the specific fault in the system that needs to fix and who is accountable for fixing it. It’s a very effective strategy since it provides occupants with a seamless experience, eliminates surprises for hotel management, increases the return on your equipment investment, and lowers total costs.
3. Remote HVAC (Asset) monitoring
IoT technology’s “User Interface” feature allows you to have consolidated visibility across all of your property’s assets through a single platform that you can access from your smartphone or laptop. Asset monitoring systems that are dynamic and automated provide real-time data and visibility into operational status. This allows your team to react quickly in critical situations. It analyzes electrical parameters, regulates operating efficiency, and keeps track of assets from anywhere, at any time, on any device.
An IoT solution establishes a centralized. It is a cloud-based environment that enables automated data gathering, updating, and maintenance on a single platform rather than establishing many databases. To keep a cost-effective system functioning, you and your team now have the time and capacity to analyze the quality of operational processes, remove waste, and avoid unexpected equipment failure. This is how IoT asset management produces the best results.
The Internet of Things (IoT) in HVAC systems is critical for monitoring vibration, airflow, pollutants, occupant comfort, weather conditions, and other factors. Remote monitoring and analysis of key stress indicators aid troubleshooting and make predictive maintenance more straightforward. Consequently, you’ll be able to meet your energy-saving targets while also preserving occupant comfort and indoor air quality.
Do you want to learn how the Internet of Things might help your company’s operations and property? Please speak with one of our specialists right now!