indoor view of a data center hvac system

Data Center HVAC Systems: How They Work And Why They Are Needed

03/14/2022

Recent extreme weather conditions in the country have increased the need for data centers to reassess their HVAC systems. We’ve heard about the fires on the West Coast and the big freeze in Texas, which threatened the operation of close to 45 percent of data centers.

Most modern data centers aren’t built to cope with bad weather conditions. If these conditions become extreme, they can cause great damage to support utilities. Without functional data center HVAC systems, companies and individuals risk losing millions of data files to extreme conditions.

The increasing demand for efficient data centers calls for innovation in the commercial HVAC sector. HVAC systems maintain favorable environmental conditions for the IT equipment in these centers. In this article, we’ll explain how these systems work and the reasons why they are needed.

How Data Center HVAC Systems Work

Data centers act as the building blocks for companies that handle large data sets. They can either run in corporate institutions or internet service centers.

Data center HVAC systems are built to offer high-intensity cooling year-round. You can count on them for data center maintenance to reduce premature breakdowns. They can also maintain favorable humidity and temperature levels for the high-sensitive equipment.

Traditional HVAC systems aren’t efficient enough to service data centers. That’s because these centers are usually located in enclosed spaces that give off a lot of heat. As a result, they require dedicated HVAC units with high cooling capabilities.

Heating and cooling units in data centers have high cooling loads and ventilation rates. They also use a relatively high amount of power depending on the size of the IT equipment.

Why Data Centers Need HVAC Systems

As demand for quality data increases, companies are investing more in powerful data handling systems. These systems tend to overheat and are susceptible to dust and humidity. Data centers need heating and cooling systems to cope with these conditions.

Here is how they can help:

Air Temperature Regulation

Large data processing computers and servers have built-in fans that prevent overheating. These fans aren’t enough to handle their cooling needs. They need specialized cooling units for managing air temperature.

A data center HVAC system can reduce the large amounts of heat produced by the equipment. It may feature a powerful cooling system that pumps cold air to the server racks. The system comes with automated controls that adjust to the room temperatures.

Cool Off Employees

Employees working for data centers need conducive workplaces for them to be productive. It might be difficult to concentrate when distracted by heat or dust from data rooms.

HVAC systems designed for data centers have programmable thermostats to adjust indoor temperatures. Having great control over your indoor conditions can keep the workers more comfortable. It can also boost morale and productivity.

Even better, the data facilities will have low cases of workers falling ill when they have efficient HVAC systems. It’ll also be easier for them to comply with OSHA’s workplace regulations.

Minimize Harmful Particles Like Dust

Harmful particles in the air surrounding data centers may slow down the performance of the equipment. The particles may also pose great respiratory health risks to staff working in these centers. A data center HVAC system can suck out these particles to keep the staff and machines safe.

While dust may seem harmless, the tiny particles may become toxic. A buildup of dust in the data storage machines and servers may cause breakdowns. Your data center is also at risk of catching fire if the indoor air quality is too dry.

Installing HVAC systems with HEPA filters can help solve this problem. They can also reduce overheating in the machines brought by the dust buildup. Dust acts as an insulator as it builds up and increases the machine temperatures to high levels. This drastically reduces the useful life of your IT equipment.

Control Humidity

Data handling machines risk having electrostatic discharges when the indoor humidity is low. The discharge may damage the internal components of these machines when left unregulated. A heating and cooling unit can control the humidity levels within the data centers.

Data center HVAC systems help humidity levels between 45-55 percent for optimal performance. High humidity levels may increase moisture in hardware and corrode them. HVAC units are designed to lower humidity when the data center air conditioner runs.

Reduce Energy Costs

Data centers consume lots of energy to operate optimally. The energy costs may increase when running on an ineffective HVAC system. Installing an HVAC unit designed for data handling/processing facilities can help reduce heating and cooling costs.

Modern commercial HVAC systems consume less power and maintain conducive environmental conditions. They can cool down your overheating servers. This reduces their risk of breaking down and consuming a lot of energy.

Improve Data Integrity

Hiring an HVAC contractor ensures that data handling machines perform at their best. They improve the consistency and accuracy of data over the machine’s lifecycle. Unfortunate weather events like data loss can be disastrous for a data center. Without a heating and cooling unit, coping with adverse conditions can be difficult. Your data center will remain credible once you have measures to prevent data loss. You’ll also earn trust among your clients and investors and make more profits.

Get Professional Commercial HVAC System Maintenance

Data center HVAC systems make data handling and storage processes more effective. They lower the risk of data loss caused by environmental conditions. Data centers also save energy and operational costs from this investment.

Count on Industrial Mechanical Contractors for your commercial HVAC needs. Our company puts great emphasis on client satisfaction and quality workmanship. Let’s help your business stay productive with commercial HVAC services. Feel free to contact us today to get started.

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