Harvard University Reduces HVAC Fan Speed Using Aeroseal Duct SealingBrad Brenner
Harvard University installed new HVAC equipment and wasn’t delivering air according to system design due to duct leakage. Aeroseal sealed the ductwork, reducing HVAC fan speed by 60%.
Getting on the Harvard University’s list of approved vendors was a great accomplishment of Aeroseal contractor Aspen Air Duct Cleaning for this project. It started with a call from a mechanical contractor working on the university’s renovation of its Girguis Lab. Engineers had just installed a new 8,500 CFM air handling unit that was meant to supply heat to the lab and an adjacent facility. When the unit was brought online, however, its fan was operating close to 97% of capacity with little effect. It was determined that air leaks in the ductwork were reducing static pressure to such a degree that air couldn’t reach its destinations. With air ducts hidden under insulation and behind layers of pipes, sealing those leaks seemed an impossible task.
- Building: Harvard University Girguis Lab, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- Aeroseal Contractor: Aspen Air Duct Cleaning
- Goal: Improve HVAC performance of new equipment install
- Before Aeroseal: 5,800 CFM of leakage (total)
- After Aeroseal: 429 CFM of leakage
- Results: Sealed air ducts to 98% reduction in leakage; Lowered HVAC fan speed by 60%, improving equipment performance
Contractors used Aeroseal to seal the ductwork in Girguis Lab at Harvard University to improve HVAC equipment performance.
Fortunately, the mechanical contractors on the job had heard about Aeroseal duct sealing that works from the inside of the air ducts to locate and seal leaks using an aerosol-based computer-controlled sealing process. With a call to Aspen, a date was set to have the system’s ductwork sealed using the patented Aeroseal technology.
Using Aeroseal, Aspen quickly reduced the duct leakage from 5,800+ CFM to 429 CFM (98% reduction). The HVAC fan now operated at only 37% of capacity. The system was quieter, and university engineers were relieved.
In fact, the project were so successful that Aspen was invited to a private Harvard vendor share event where they were asked to seal another campus building. That’s how Aspen earned a spot on the Harvard University’s official vendor list. Now that’s a creative way to get into Harvard.
John Hollister, Senior Capital Project Manager, Harvard University: “I would absolutely call this a project saver. Our only other option was to tear down walls and demolish the building structure in order to access the leaky ductwork. We were very pleased with the results and I honestly don’t know how we would have solved this issue if the Aeroseal technology wasn’t available.”
Steven Sundius, Senior Project Manager, Rist-Frost-Shumway Engineering, P.C.: “Any prior concerns we had over the disruption that the aeroseal process might cause in a 24/7 environment were quickly proven to be unfounded. It was probably the quickest evidence of success I’ve ever seen. We’ve already spec’d Aeroseal into several additional projects.”