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Daikin UK - Case Study

Air Conditioning - Heat Recovery - Case Study - Daikin UK

Fitness club back to full health with rapid change to R32 chiller

A Norwich health and fitness club was one of the first sites to benefit from Daikin’s Reclaim With Confidence service – and the new-generation, R32-based EWAT-B chiller.

The David Lloyd facility at Hellesdon, four miles from the city centre, includes a full suite of gym equipment and group exercise studios, plus indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts and badminton courts, and a lounge area. With easy road access, ample parking, a superstore as its neighbour and a popular hotel upstairs, the club enjoys high prominence and an enthusiastic membership with at least 1,000 fitness enthusiasts swiping in to use the facilities on a typical day.

The club has operated under various brands for 20 years, finally becoming part of the David Lloyd Leisure network about three years ago. The gym and exercise studios are at the heart of the club, and a temperate environment is essential for the comfort of their users and instructors.

Temperatures are regulated by fan coil units and an air handling unit that are fed with chilled water from a chiller housed in a ground-level enclosure at the rear of the club.

The club’s experience manager, Gary Wood, says with reliability issues overhanging the existing chiller and repairs impractical because of the unit’s age, it was time for new technology.

Nationwide Air Conditioning, a Daikin D1+ Partner and David Lloyd contractor, recommended the Daikin EWAT-B chiller. As a first step, the old chiller had to be decommissioned – which involved recovering its 99kg charge of R407C refrigerant to render it safe for removal. Nationwide project manager Daniel Valente says: “We’d heard about the Reclaim With Confidence service at a Daikin D1 Business Partner conference. Norwich was a good opportunity to try it.”

Daikin offers Reclaim With Confidence in partnership with A-Gas, which provides a rapid refrigerant recovery service, coupled with specialist reprocessing of refrigerants that are still in general use and efficient disposal of those that are not.

The refrigerant recovery service is a boon to Daikin Business Partners, using more powerful recovery machines than engineers normally use and long recovery hoses to reach condensing units in virtually any location. In addition, the A-Gas crews bring their own recovery cylinders – avoiding another chore for engineers.

The major benefit of the rapid recovery service is that it can significantly reduce downtime for the customer's equipment – and it saves valuable working time for engineers.

Daniel Valente says Reclaim With Confidence was a key factor in the success of the Norwich project. “It enabled us to replace the old chiller more quickly than would have been possible otherwise. As a result, we were able to recommission the entire system and bring indoor temperatures to the desired levels with minimal delay.”

He says the choice of the new Daikin EWAT-B chiller was simple. “It is a good quality product. We’ve worked with them previously and we know that the support from Daikin is excellent.”

The EWAT-B is the world’s first air-cooled scroll chiller with R32 refrigerant a product of Daikin’s ongoing quest for innovation and an expansion of its Bluevolution range to larger capacity systems. These chillers range from 80-700kW.

R32 has a global warming potential of 675 – one third of the GWP of the commonly used R410A blend (of which R32 is a 50% component). With its low flammability classification, R32 can be safely used in many applications – including chilled water systems. And as a single-component refrigerant, R32 is easier to recycle.

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