They say a team is only as strong as its weakest link — this idea is true for mechanical equipment, as well. No matter how good your hardware is, it will not work right if it is not installed and set up correctly by a competent mechanical contractor.
This truth was highlighted by the recent installation of a Seresco indoor pool dehumidifier at Fairfield Inn and Suites, Cumberland. Fairfield is a customer of Dehumidified Air Solutions’ National Accounts Program, so is assured excellent equipment for all its pool facilities. Fortunately, the other side of the equation was covered too, because Dehumidified Air Solutions has a Preferred Partners program that enables countrywide referral to a qualified installing contractor for all its National Accounts dehumidifier sales.
Picking the Right Contractor the Key to Success
When it comes to installing pool dehumidifiers, there’s a lot to know. Replacing older failed equipment is even more challenging. They are precision pieces of HVAC equipment with many elements unlike more typical equipment like rooftop air conditioners or air handlers. Plus, pool installations are a lot less common than other projects, so most contractors have not had enough repeat business to build specialization with dehumidifiers — as a result, the field of contractors qualified to successfully install them is more limited.
An example of where this can cause real challenges is with air balancing. Every dehumidifier in a public pool needs to blend in a certain amount of outdoor air with its supply airstream, and this amount is adjusted manually at installation with a special balancing damper. This is not dissimilar to a commercial air handler, but the situation is more unique because if, for example, in a northern climate the outdoor air damper was too far open it would result in a lot of cold air being mixed in with the supply airstream. Cold air is dry air, and when it gets heated the relative humidity (RH) typically drops down to around 30% or 40%. In a traditional indoor space like an office, this would typically go unnoticed other than some higher costs for heating, but in a pool it is a major problem. Not only does RH lower than 50% dramatically increase the pool’s evaporation rate and therefore the energy requirement of the dehumidifier, it also causes patron discomfort because swimmers will be chilled as they exit the water. Because many installing contractors don’t know all the intricacies that come with pool jobs, this very important task is often missed by mistake.
The unique challenges posed by dehumidifier installation aren’t just faced by the contractor — the owner is implicated, too. After all, how are they to know who is the right person for their project? As well, an inexperienced contractor may be unable to provide efficient costing, so may perform the work for much more cost than necessary.
The National Accounts Solution
Fairfield Inn and Suites avoided these challenges when it purchased its dehumidifier in 2019 through the Dehumidified Air Solutions National Accounts Program. The Seresco NE-006 unit provided was installed by a Preferred Partner who specializes in pool dehumidifiers. The hotel had the option of hiring their own contractor, but was familiar with this partner’s track history of success and wanted to replicate that with their project.
Our partner not only installed the new dehumidifier perfectly, but also designed and installed a new duct take off that fit like a glove. Take offs can be tricky because they have to align perfectly with the unit, so expert planning and knowledge is the only way to be sure of getting it done right.
Complete After-Sale Manufacturer Support
Contractors who install HVAC equipment typically have an obligation to support issues with it for one year. Invariably, a contractor not as familiar with dehumidifiers will run into problems and won’t be able to solve them on their own. So, after trial and error doesn’t work, the manufacturer typically ends up getting called in to address the issues. The owner can suffer a lot of wasted costs because of these challenges.
With the National Accounts Program, factory support for the product begins at start-up. Dehumidified Air Services, the manufacturer’s service organization, sends a trained technician to supervise all equipment start-ups to ensure the right start to a trouble-free operation. As well, the organization takes over all first-year period support requirements and offers optional extended service contracts if desired. Factory-direct service ensures the owner gets the best possible support because technicians work directly for the manufacturer and only service Dehumidified Air Solutions products.