Green Building Technology: Cooling Tower Filtration

Cooling Towers Enhance Green Building Technology

The economic benefits of improving indoor air quality may help to reduce the amount of outside air that is used in an air conditioning system. As more businesses incorporate the principles of green building technology, there will be a substantial benefit of increased productivity from temperature control, better ventilation and lighting control, as well as reduced indoor air pollution. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a globally recognized green building certification system that represents and incorporates emerging green building technologies. In a 2003 report on green building returns on investment, a review of sixty LEED certified buildings revealed an average of 25% to 30% increased energy efficiency.

Cooling towers are devices used to absorb heat from air conditioning systems and evaporate a portion of it in the air. The water is cooled to the wet bulb temperature of the air. Airborne contaminants should be flushed into the system where they will deposit on heat exchange surfaces.  Treatment includes four specific parameters of control that include biological fouling, scale, corrosion and airborne contaminants. Regular filtration of the water in your sump will help to keep your cooling tower clean. Removal of airborne contaminants and byproducts makes treatment very effective. With UV sterilization and filtration, the water is provided with daily cleaning.

Recirculating and cooling towers use deionizing filters such as the Pentek PCF1-10MB Deionization Water Filter and the Pentek PCF1-20MB Deionization Water Filter for their filtration applications. Deionization produces high purity water that is generally similar to distilled water, which is quick and without scale buildup. The HM PH-200 Waterproof pH Meter is a highly accurate digital pH and temperature meter that is ideal for testing boilers and cooling tower applications.

Cooling towers filter airborne contaminants that enter the system. High volumes of dirty ambient air pass through the tower and most of the airborne pollutants will end up in the basin of the cooling tower. Chemical residue, algae and calcium carbonate scale buildup can result from circulation water. The make-up of the water could also contribute to the buildup of contaminants. Cleanliness is the key to control the problems created from airborne pollutants. The filtration in an open cooling tower is necessary in many cases and highly recommended.

As open water continuously cascades in a cooling tower, it always picks up airborne contaminants. These materials can seep into the sump of the cooling tower, flow downstream into the system, and then clog heat exchangers, condenser tube bundles and other very important equipment. This will decrease operating efficiency, shorten the lifespan of equipment, increase water treatment costs, as well as the potential for downtime with cleaning and repairing.

The green building certification system of LEED provides third party verification that a building or community is designed and built using strategies to improve performance in metrics. Such metrics include energy savings, carbon dioxide emissions reduction, water efficiency, improved indoor environmental quality and stewardship of resources as it relates to the sensitivity of their impacts.

How to Build an Eco-Friendly Home

how to green your homeWe talk a lot about “greening” your lifestyle by dropping unnecessary habits like bottled water. But, perhaps you’re wondering about some other ways to live a more eco-conscious life. Using more efficient air and water filters is just one step in building an eco-friendly home. Erick, a writer for San Diego custom home builders, Murray Lampert construction, shares with us a few more simple, and fairly inexpensive things you can do to reduce your home’s carbon footprint:

The Simple Stuff

Recycling – One of the easiest ways to help green your home is to start recycling. It’s simple, and most communities today offer recycling services to their residents. All you have to do is set up a recycling system with your family. Label different containers for the various recyclable waste products instead of throwing them all together in the trash. Recycling is also a great way to get children involved in eco-friendly practices and to help them learn about environmental issues and ways to live healthier, more eco-conscious lives. Recycling with your kids gives you a chance to explain to them how decreasing the amount of wastes in landfills helps the planet.

Eco-Friendly Light Bulbs – Another simple way to make your house greener is to save on energy by changing your light bulbs. Replace those old incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs. They’re inexpensive and will make a difference in your monthly energy bill.

New Hot Water Heaters – You can also save power by switching from conventional hot water heaters to solar hot water heaters or on-demand tankless water heaters.

Shower Heads – Conventional shower heads can waste a lot of water. Switching your old shower heads to pressurized and low-flow alternatives can save you gallons of water per day and will make a huge difference in your monthly utility bills. A low flow shower head typically uses about 2.5 gallons per minute or less, as opposed to 6 GPM from old shower heads. Filtering your shower water can also help you maintain a healthier home, as it removes toxic chlorine from your water supply. Most Sprite filtered shower heads are low-flow.

Optimize Water Use – Another good way to save water is to place containers outside to capture rainwater to use for garden irrigation. You can also save your shower’s “gray water” and use it to irrigate your garden as well.

Eco-Friendly Landscaping

Landscaping your yard or garden with local, native plants is a great way to make your home more eco-friendly. Because native plants are acclimated to the local ecosystem, they’ll grow without much soil amendment. This means less pesticides and artificial fertilizers that harm the environment. Visit your local nursery to learn more about native landscaping options.

Eco-Friendly Home Building

Next time you’re planning a home remodeling project, look for remodeling companies that have LEED certification, or some other type of government green building certification. Most eco-friendly builders use natural products that don’t contain harmful chemicals. These will not only help the environment, but will make your home safer and healthier for your family.

To learn more about other eco-friendly ways to remodel your home, shop around with various local home builders and remodeling companies for advice, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.