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Which Type of Chiller Is Right For Your HVAC System?

Jan. 05, 2022

Chillers are an important commercial HVAC component because they extend the cooling capacity of your HVAC system. When you need to choose a chiller, you should be aware of the different types of chillers and their efficiencies. In this blog, we have conducted a chiller efficiency comparison to help you determine which type of chiller is right for your HVAC system and your overall commercial facility.

 

Different Types of Chillers

There are several different types of chillers to consider, and they operate in different ways. Some chillers use compressors, while others do not. The different types of chillers include

 

Centrifugal chillers: This type of chiller converts kinetic energy into static energy through compression. It draws in refrigerant through the impeller blades to bring it to a higher pressure level and then expels heat from the refrigerant. Centrifugal chillers are one of the types of chillers that use mechanical compressors.


Air Cooled Screw Chiller

 Air Cooled Screw Chiller   

Absorption chillers: These chillers deliver steam or hot water through pipes, where they evaporate the refrigerant and turn it into steam, which then enters the condenser. The refrigerant is returned to the absorber, which absorbs it into a lithium bromide solution and converts it back into refrigerant vapor. The absorber replaces the mechanical compressor, which is found in other types of chillers, such as centrifugal chillers. Types of absorption chillers include single-acting, dual-acting and direct-fired absorption chillers.

 

Modular chillers: There are several different types of modular chillers: centrifugal, screw and scroll. These different types determine how a chiller uses its refrigerant. The main difference between modular chillers and other types of chillers, however, is that you can pair two or more modular chillers together to extend the cooling capacity of your HVAC. In this setup, one or more modular chillers are subordinate to the main modular chiller, so they can all operate in harmony.

 

These are just some of the chillers you can use for your commercial or industrial HVAC system. Huazhao can help you choose the right type of chiller, and then we can install and maintain it for you.


Water Cooled Screw Chiller

 Water Cooled Screw Chiller          

Water Cooled vs. Air Cooled Chillers

The chiller types listed above differ in their setup and how they cool the refrigerant to extend the cooling capacity of your HVAC system. However, there is another way to distinguish between chiller types: there are water-cooled chillers and air-cooled chillers. For example, absorption chillers are water-cooled chillers. Water-cooled chillers circulate condensate through a cooling tower. They work well in medium and large commercial HVAC installations because they are not affected by fluctuations in ambient temperature.

 

On the other hand, air-cooled chillers use condensers that are cooled by the air surrounding their units. They are found in small to medium sized commercial HVAC units located in limited spaces. Although they are more sensitive to their surroundings, air-cooled chillers are simpler in design, so they are less expensive to install and maintain than water-cooled chillers. When choosing a chiller for your commercial HVAC system, you should keep these two chiller types in mind.

 

Water-cooled chillers circulate condensate through a cooling tower. They work well in medium and large commercial HVAC installations because they are not affected by fluctuations in ambient temperature. On the other hand, air-cooled chillers use condensers that are cooled by the air surrounding their units. They are found in small to medium sized commercial HVAC units located in limited spaces.

 

Comparing Chiller Efficiency

Everyone wants their energy system to be energy efficient, but you should know that the efficiency of different types of chillers is calculated differently. For example, the efficiency of a centrifugal chiller is calculated differently than that of an absorption chiller. However, when you calculate the efficiency of each type and compare them, absorption chillers are more efficient overall.

 

Choosing the Right Chiller with Air Comfort

If you need a new HVAC installation or HVAC retrofit, Huazhao's team of experts can help you choose the right chiller for your system. Contact us today to start your search for the right commercial or industrial chiller system.


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