Evington Centre in Leicester

Client: Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust
Contractor: Air Conditioning Economics
Type of works: Installation of a R410a air conditioning system.

Anaged R22 air conditioning system for a hospital server room was replaced with a new inverter split system from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Europe (MHIE).The system was quickly and easily installed on existing pipework. Unable to procure a replacement for the ageing bearing, Air Conditioning Economics (ACE) recommended that the Evington Centre in Leicester should take the opportunity to beat the R22 ban and install a new R410a system instead.

The Evington Centre, next to Leicester General Hospital, is a purpose-built hospital providing inpatient and day hospital services for the assessment and treatment of older people with mental health problems. The £9million hospital for the Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust was opened in 2001 with 80 beds across four wards. It can also accommodate 40 day patients.

Alan Ball, Operations Manager for ACE, says the R22 replacement was a sensible choice. “Spare parts for the old, non-inverter system were a problem and the indoor fan motor bearing was faulty,” he says. “And with the ban on virgin R22 for servicing from the start of 2010 and a total ban on R22 due to come into force at the end of 2014, the system’s days were already numbered.”

ACE installed a heat pump split system from MHIE’s Ecolution range, sourced through distributor 3D Air Sales Ltd. It used existing pipework which was in a good condition and met the required specification. “As a result, we were able to save costs for the client and complete the installation with minimal disruption in the server room – the pipework would otherwise have been very difficult to replace. I would certainly recommend this solution again, provided it saves time and costs for the client.” Before carrying out the installation, ACE engineers completed a training module specifically for ‘Installing MHI R410a onto existing R22 pipelines’. The half-day course is run free of charge by 3D Air and HRP at the Technical Centre in Slough, at any HRP Service Centre or, by arrangement, at installers’ premises.

MHIE Sales Manager David Lettis says Mitsubishi Heavy’s high-efficiency Ecolution splits can be installed in place of most makes of old R22 indoor and outdoor units – without the need for new pipework or wiring.

Since 2004, when it pioneered high efficiency R410a split systems as an alternative, MHIE has consistently underlined the benefits of the new technology which include higher CoP (Coefficient of Performance) ratings, enhanced heat transfer properties, reduced refrigerant requirements and reduced energy consumption – up to 38% less than older models.

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