MythBusters: Debunking Commercial HVAC Myths with Atlantic Westchester

In the complex world of commercial HVAC systems, myths, and misconceptions can often lead to costly mistakes and inefficient operations. For those charged with building operations and maintenance, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of the truths behind these common misconceptions to ensure optimal performance and cost-effectiveness.  


Myth #1: Bigger HVAC systems are always better.  

Reality: While it may seem beneficial to have extra capacity for extreme conditions, oversized systems can lead to inefficiencies, increased operating costs, the inability to dehumidify, and reduced comfort levels. Proper sizing and selection of HVAC equipment is essential to ensure optimal performance and energy efficiency. It is important to work with an HVAC company that specializes in right-sizing HVAC systems to match the unique needs of each facility, maximizing efficiency and minimizing operating costs. 


Myth #2: Regular maintenance is optional.  

Reality: Skipping regular maintenance might seem like a cost-saving measure in the short term, but it can lead to higher repair costs, reduced system lifespan, and diminished indoor air quality over time. It is crucial to identify and resolve potential issues before they escalate, thereby ensuring your HVAC system operates smoothly throughout the year. 


Myth #3: Outdoor air intake is better for indoor air quality.  

Reality: While it’s true that introducing outdoor air can improve indoor air quality, without proper filtration and control, it may also compromise it, particularly in areas with high outdoor pollution levels. Implementing controlled ventilation strategies, including high-efficiency air filters and demand-controlled ventilation systems, can optimize indoor air quality while conserving energy and ensuring thermal comfort. 


Myth # 4: All HVAC filters are created equal. 

Reality: Not all HVAC filters are designed to capture the same particles, and using low-quality filters can result in poor indoor air quality and increased strain on the system. Filters should be tailored to your facility’s specific needs, ensuring high-efficiency, clean, and healthy air for occupants while prolonging the life of your HVAC equipment.   


Myth #5: Turning the thermostat way down will cool the building faster.  

Reality: Cranking the thermostat to extreme temperatures won’t cool the building any faster and will likely result in unnecessary energy consumption. Our team recommends setting the thermostat to a comfortable temperature and allowing the HVAC system to work efficiently to reach and maintain that level. Another great option is to utilize smarter programmable thermostats or BMS control to apply building temperature setbacks and recovery time to achieve ideal occupancy temperature preference. This allows you to set it and forget it! 


Myth #6: Closing vents in unused rooms saves energy.  

Reality: Contrary to popular belief, closing vents in unused rooms can actually disrupt airflow and increase pressure within the ductwork, leading to decreased efficiency and potential damage to the system. Our experts recommend maintaining balanced airflow throughout the building to optimize performance and energy savings. 


Navigating the world of commercial HVAC systems can be challenging, but with Atlantic Westchester as your trusted partner, you can rest assured that your facility is in extremely capable hands. By debunking these common myths and misconceptions, we empower operations directors and building maintenance managers to make informed decisions that optimize efficiency, comfort, and cost-effectiveness. Contact us today to learn more about how Atlantic Westchester can elevate your facility’s HVAC performance to new heights.