industrial chiller room

These Affect Your Chiller and Require Refrigeration Repair

The combined consequences of poor operating practices, ignored or deferred maintenance, neglected cooling tower maintenance, and incorrect sizing can contribute to decreased chiller efficiency and require refrigeration repair. Let’s dive deeper into these problems to understand why you must avoid them:

Bad Habits or Practices

Poor operating practices can decrease not only chiller efficiency but also chiller life. Most such practices result from either trying to make the chiller do more than it was designed for or from not comprehending the consequences of a particular action. These ultimately result in refrigeration repair.

On the flip side, noticing these poor practices also allows maintenance personnel to develop an ongoing maintenance program for longer, more efficient equipment life. It enables maintenance personnel to recognize and correct problems early before they become more extensive and costly. Finally, training helps operations and maintenance personnel identify poor operating practices before being accepted as standard procedures.

Incorrect Sizing

Proper sizing is the key to getting the most from a chiller. Efficiency declines dramatically when a chiller is undersized for its cooling load. When a facility was built, chiller sizing was often overestimated, as designers wanted to accommodate future cooling load additions without changing the chiller.

Replacing an undersized chiller with a more efficient model saves more money over time than leaving it in place and operating it more. Studying the performance of an old chiller and its actual cooling load can help managers more accurately size a replacement unit to meet current needs.

Also, replacing multiple chillers with varying sizes allows you to stage operations to meet peak loads and take advantage of different coolant temperatures. Thus, your chillers will run at peak efficiency since their capabilities are suited to the loads.

Minimized Maintenance

The difference between maintenance and repair is this: the former concerns regular check-ups for the device to run correctly, while the latter deals with fixing a malfunction that has already happened.

Good maintenance of building refrigeration units begins with keeping a detailed log of their operation. A record of operating parameters can give maintenance personnel a valuable diagnostic tool. Most chiller problems develop slowly over time. By tracking chiller data and reviewing it regularly, operators can identify trends in chiller performance, helping maintenance personnel pinpoint the cause of the problem.

Good maintenance also includes regularly scheduled inspections of the chiller. These inspections — which can be performed daily, weekly, monthly, or annually — help identify the chiller’s health and operating efficiency. Proper upkeep is essential to ensure the efficient operation of any building equipment. Otherwise, you’ll need refrigeration repair.

Overlooking Cooling Towers

Cooling towers perform the difficult task of cooling water for utilities and industrial facilities. They simply dump water into the atmosphere through bare metal cooling fins, but that does not make them immune to problems.

Dirt, leaves, and other debris build upon their exposed surfaces. The warm, moist environment in which they operate also allows biological growth on their surfaces. The buildup can impair their efficiency. Dirt and algae can clog their spray nozzles and prevent the release of the proper amount of water and air mixture into their surroundings, requiring costly refrigeration repair down the line.


Awareness of these common threats to chiller efficiency empowers your organization to improve its processes and maximize funds while decreasing unnecessary refrigeration repairs. Proper maintenance and sizing are essential for any chiller to perform accurately without costing an extra cent on your bills.

Need a repair job for chillers? Contact Bay Area Mechanical today for immediate refrigeration repair! We specialize in contractual maintenance work for commercial and industrial applications of boilers, chillers, refrigeration repair, and other HVAC systems. Get a quote from us today!

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