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Adveco packaged plant room.

Packaged Plant Rooms – A New Paradigm for Site Safety

Adveco discusses how off-site construction techniques for commercial heating and hot water can alleviate pressures of cost and timescale on construction sites whilst also helping improve Covid-19 safety precautions…

There is no doubt that we are going to face long term changes in the way construction projects operate during and in the wake of the current Covid-19 pandemic. Worksites are already having to adhere to stricter policy on where and when workers can traverse and engage on-site, and, in accordance with Government recommendations, the responsibility for their safety lies squarely on the shoulders of the host – not only for incumbent staff but also for any visiting contractors or customers. Ultimately this is all to ensure anyone on site does not become compromised. This means further stretching the usually difficult, and therefore costly, co-ordination of equipment and controls installations required for a building. Such complexity is typical, for instance, when creating and installing modern heating and hot water applications.

New world, new approach

Adopting offsite pre-fabrication as part of your project is therefore highly advantageous, reducing time on site required of specialist contractors, which is both more cost-effective and safer for all involved.

Adveco combines deep engineering understanding with a wide prod­uct offering and experience in full system design to provide a single source of supply for the delivery of complete packaged plant rooms containing heating and hot water systems tailored precisely to fit the specific needs of a project.

All work is carried out in a controlled, purpose-made environment. This means should there be any forced downtime on-site due to a local lockdown, the assembly work at Adveco will continue as planned. With no distractions from other typical construction site activities or issue we can ensure your plant room work is more rapidly progressed and, with a controlled factory environment, optimal manufacturing conditions are provided for quality control. Unlike the general conditions found on a construction site.

Locating all production work offsite also means the plant room element of a project can also efficiently progress at the same time as other groundworks or site installations. As the plant room arrives with all appliances, controls and ancillaries pre-fitted and connected – using stainless steel (heating) or copper (DHW) crimp pipework – as standard, there is no need for extended plumbing and electrical installation. This helps drastically reduce on-site labour demands and allows for more rapid progression of project timescales, despite social distancing requirements.

To achieve the best results, you will need to finalise facets of decision-making relating to hot water, heating or cogeneration of power early on in the project to allow for increased lead-in times. Once production commences it becomes more difficult to accommodate changes to a bespoke pre-fabricated system. This is why Adveco’s expert design engineers will work closely from the start with your project team to accurately size and design a system that meets the exact needs of the project on day of delivery.  All that is required is for flues, external pipework and final electrical connections to be completed on-site.

Adveco has broad experience of developing small to very large packaged plant rooms, embracing a wide range of cost-effective to operate and renewable technologies, from high-efficiency gas and electric boilers and water heaters to heat recovery units, micro CHP, solar thermal and Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHPs). These are all brought together to deliver a wide range of bespoke applications that can transform the operational nature of a commercial property, reducing emissions and improving the efficiency of hot water and heating for lower ongoing costs. The fact that these systems can also be delivered in a manner that is also much safer for all involved on-site shows the tremendous advantages to be gained from this approach.

Discover more about Adveco’s Packaged Plant Rooms

Legionella Precautions When Reopening Buildings

Legionella Precautions When Reopening Buildings

  • Find the Legionella risk assessment for your building.
  • Restart hot water systems 24 hours before the building is to be reoccupied.
  • Test water temperatures.
  • Get expert advice if a building’s occupants’ health places them in a high-risk category.

Commercial hot water and heating specialist, Adveco, today offered a precautionary warning against the dangers of Legionella for businesses planning to open facilities under the Government’s ‘conditional plan’ to reopen society.

“In response to Covid-19, an unprecedented number of business properties have been forced to close, often with little to no warning. As those businesses work towards reopening it is extremely important that some consideration is made to how to restart it without creating an unsafe situation if buildings have been shut and the hot water has been turned off,” advises Bill Sinclair, technical director, Adveco.

Stagnant (not moving) water, especially at warm temperatures (more than 20°C), creates the ideal situation for the proliferation of Legionella bacteria.  Normally in hot water systems the risk is minimised by the temperature, constant flow and because the risk of Legionella in the incoming mains is relatively low. However, it can be present, and the risk to building occupants increases if: a water system is fed from a cold water tank instead of the mains; a hot water system has been turned off for more than a week; there are aerosol creating taps such as showers, whirlpool Jacuzzi hot tubs, washing up spray faucets, and any building where occupants are elderly or immuno-compromised.

If a business has been closed, and the hot water system has been off, and the building taps are mains-fed and occupants are low risk and then it should be sufficient to do the following:

  • Find the Legionella risk assessment for your building and read it thoroughly
  • Start up your hot water system at least 24 hours before the building is to be occupied
  • Make sure all pumps are on
  • Make sure the hot water temperature is over 60°C

Wait a few hours, or better still next day carry out the following:

  • With a thermometer, check the temperatures from several non-blended taps that are as far as possible from the water heating system. They must achieve temperatures of more than 50°C within 60 seconds, and preferably hotter and faster
  • Run all hot and aerosol creating taps to thoroughly flush them. The minimum expectation for small, basic hot and cold water systems would be flushing through with fresh mains water.  During flushing, all valves should be operated in the fully open position so that any particulate matter can be flushed through. For larger buildings with tanks, showers, calorifiers and more complex pipework, more extensive flushing is recommended. Due to the recent warm weather, it is likely that some increase in bacteria levels and biofilm will occur. Depending on circumstances, sampling and testing for different bacteria may be recommended and the system will require cleaning and potentially repeated disinfection. It is still good sense to have evidence that this process has been successful, so sampling in accordance with BS7592 should be considered to validate the effectiveness of flushing and cleaning.

If your hot water system has been off, and your building taps and occupants are medium or high risk then you must do the following:

  • Find the Legionella risk assessment for your building and read it thoroughly
  • If you have a maintenance team with expertise in Legionella you should contact them before restarting the hot water system
  • If you do not have such a team you must take advice from a firm that does or contact Adveco Technical Support for further information

It is important to remember that the responsibility for Legionella control lies with the duty holder. The temporary building closures as a response to Covid-19 means that unless careful consideration is given to restarting hot water systems there is a real potential for a Legionella outbreak.

For further guidance on reopening your business and the threat of Legionella refer to this information from ICOM Energy Association.

About Adveco

With almost 50 years of industry experience, Adveco is the trusted specialist provider of bespoke hot water, heating and power systems to the building services industry. Committed to partnering with its commercial and government customers, Adveco helps create comfortable, efficient, functional, safe and sustainable buildings through invaluable support in the design, supply, commissioning and service of business-critical hot water, heating and power. Headquartered in the UK, the company operates across Europe from offices in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Adveco – Expertly engineered for you. Visit www.adveco.co

Adveco commissioning

Adveco Covid 19 update – Engineering Site Visits

The provision of heating and especially hot water within hospitals and residential care facilities, supermarkets and those supporting key workers, such as schools, is being actively prioritised for support by Adveco. An important aspect of that work is the provision of site-based engineering services for emergency call outs, ensuring priority customers have a reliable supply of heating and, in particular, hot water.

Regarded as essential work, we are still providing this service in these times of social distancing and stay at home rules. Adveco is taking all necessary measures to protect its staff and help prevent further spread of the Coronavirus. As a result, we have made some alterations to our engineers’ working practices and we ask for your patience and help to keep them safe while doing their jobs. This will help to ensure we can continue to offer this critical engineering support throughout the duration of this pandemic.

While on site, we will be instigating the following changes to protocols to ensure the safety of our engineers:

  • No signing in – site contact to sign the engineer in.
  • No classroom-style inductions – inductions, if necessary, take place outside as toolbox talks, ensuring distances of over two metres from others.
  • No entry into crowded areas / areas that are heavily trafficked / areas where people loiter – the engineer is to phone and the site contact should come outside to meet him and take him around the outside of the building to the plant room. Plant room to be accessed from the nearest external door (not by walking through an occupied building, unless at the engineer’s discretion, he has our full support if he deems the risk too high). Please advise prior to the visit if you feel plant room access may be problematic.
  • No one else to be working in the vicinity / in the plant room while our engineer is there.
  • No signing out – site contact to sign the engineer out.
  • The site must provide facilities for hand-washing.

We will be requesting that agreement to the above protocols be agreed in writing prior to an engineering visit. If these allowances cannot be accommodated, we will deem the work non-essential and attendance will be rescheduled following the Government mandated ‘stay at home’ period.  Our engineer will carry out a risk assessment on arrival and if you cannot provide the stated conditions then he has been instructed to abort the job, this will incur a standard aborted visit fee.

We are sorry to have to impose conditions on our visit, but we are committed to the health of our engineers and the ability to continue to support our many customers providing key services to the nation.

We appreciate your support in these extraordinary circumstances.

Adveco Covid-19 update.

Adveco Covid-19 update

During these unprecedented times, and in response to the latest Government advice to all businesses in the UK, Adveco is taking all necessary measures to protect its staff and help prevent further spread of the Coronavirus.

Our services have always been regarded as business-critical to our customers, and with so many providing front-line support in the UK in the fight against this pandemic, it has never been truer.

I want to assure you that Adveco and our sister company A.O. Smith Water Heaters remain open for business. We continue to operate from our Farnborough HQ but with a reduced staff for the duration of April. This is of paramount importance to us, to maintain our supply lines and ensure deliveries are made so your projects are not delayed.

We are well stocked, and our field engineering teams are on hand to respond to ongoing emergency call outs.

As the situation continues to develop, it has become clear that we, like so many businesses, must prioritise our services in response to the critical needs of customers across the health sector. The provision of heating and especially hot water within hospitals and residential care facilities that provide for those most at risk must take precedence at this time. We will be endeavouring to ensure all product and engineering support is made available in the fastest time to customers within the health sector. Supermarkets and those supporting key workers, such as schools, will also be prioritised for support by Adveco.

We are happy to discuss the needs of your project or servicing requirements but hope you will appreciate that if you are not providing key services at this time that our response may be delayed.

We will operate a small retained team for the coming month to support your needs, but you may experience a delay in response when contacting the office. We are responding to all calls and messages but apologise if you are unable to get an instant reply. We appreciate your patience.

To reiterate, Adveco remains open and ready to meet your commercial hot water and heating needs. We appreciate your support and understanding.

David O’Sullivan

Managing Director

Adveco / A.O. Smith Water Heaters UK