When an Industrial Chiller Calls it Quits
Founded in 1916, the Chestnut Hill Benevolent Association provides Christian Science nursing services, nurses training and senior living residences. Located at 910 Boylston Street, the Association sits on 24.2 acres.
Late in the summer of 2018, the Association’s fifteen-year-old Tecogen Natural Gas Driven Indoor Chiller decided to call it quits. Chillers are one of the most expensive equipment investments for most facilities and managers move cautiously when choosing a replacement. However, knowing that the comfort of the nurses, patients and senior residents rested solely on his shoulders, the Association’s facilities manager, Steve Fulkerson, began seeking HVAC and engineering providers that could start proposing options.
LC Anderson was the chosen HVAC contractor to help select, install, commission, and service a new energy- efficient chiller.
Preparing for the Installation
LC Anderson principals, Karl and Kurt Hudson teamed up to get the plan underway. Karl worked with Steve to determine the mechanical requirements, while Kurt managed the timeline and budget as the project manager. Installation Manager Jerry Karpowicz coordinated the work and scheduling of numerous contractors that were needed on-site a various times throughout the project.
Civil engineers selected the best outdoor location to keep the equipment out of plain sight, acoustical engineers evaluated the placement to ensure minimal sound impact to nearby residential neighbors, and the local utilities company assessed the adequacy of power supply to operate the new chiller.
Drawing on his equipment expertise and over two decades of construction experience, Karl recommended installing a Carrier outdoor air-cooled chiller for its energy efficiency, long 20+ year life expectancy and easy serviceability.
The purchase order was signed in mid-February 2019 with the expectation of having service in place by the beginning of summer. The equipment was ordered and the LC Anderson team began working with other contractors and third-party agencies to prepare the site for the needs of the equipment and its impact on the surrounding area.
Additional preparation required recovering refrigerant from the old chiller per EPA guidelines, removing the chiller from the indoor mechanical room with the assistance of a professional rigging company, and breaking down the old equipment into disposable pieces.
LC Anderson’s project manager worked with DigSafe and the civil engineer ensure the pad sight location and pathways to the building were approved for excavation. After the pad sight excavation was complete, a crew poured the 10’ x 20’ concrete pad and retaining wall reinforced with rebar. The project team excavated a 150’ channel to lay the underground polyethylene piping that would connect the chiller to the existing chilled water loop (CHW).
There were many unusual aspects of the job such as penetrating a core wall in the mechanical room to tie into the existing CHW and installing a specialized underground valve to ensure safe draining and layup of the chiller for the freezing Boston winters.
On delivery day, the crane service arrived to set the new 160-ton chiller in place on the concrete pad. The electrician was onsite to power wire to the chiller and tie into existing emergency power. After testing the piping integrity, the crew began insulating the new piping and backfilling the trench with dirt.
Industrial Chiller for Summertime Comfort
Just in time for Memorial Day weekend, on budget and well ahead of schedule, the industrial chiller installation was completed. The Carrier factory representative was onsite for the startup of the chiller and training Steve on operating the new system.
“We were incredibly pleased with LC Anderson’s project coordination and very high-quality installation”, the Association’s facilities manager, Steve Fulkerson stated. “The chiller has worked flawlessly. It is reliable and economical, and it was a terrific choice.”
For information or service on your HVAC system, please contact us at 617-779-9500 or complete the contact us form here.