How Often Should Healthcare Facilities Maintenance Their HVAC Systems?

HVAC manufacturers discuss how frequently HVAC systems should receive maintenance.

By Jeff Wardon, Jr., Assistant Editor

Maintenance is an important part of keeping any complex mechanical system working as it should. HVAC systems are no exception, and if they break down, it could spell disaster for a healthcare facility. In this manufacturer roundtable, Healthcare Facilities Today speaks with HVAC manufacturers about how often HVAC systems should receive maintenance. 

How often should HVAC systems receive maintenance? 

“Maintenance schedules depend on a system’s use and location. Generally, senior living communities should clean indoor unit filters monthly, and the outdoor condensing unit coils every six months for any type of split HVAC system. 

More advanced diagnostics can also be run regularly with the heat pump and VRF heat pump controls by factory trained personnel. This service can be accomplished on site or via remote login to the system’s controls.” 

— Randall Towb, senior manager of business development – senior living, Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC US 

“Typically, HVAC systems should be inspected and serviced for preventive maintenance at least once a year. The need and frequency of maintenance will vary with factors such as age of the equipment, usage patterns and environmental conditions associated with the equipment location. Healthcare facilities have demanding requirements for HVAC systems with air changes up to 20 times per hour (operating rooms), putting tremendous stress on systems. In such environments systems need more frequent maintenance checks. The air filters should receive a more regular review (every one to three months) and be cleaned or replaced as needed. Clogged filters restrict airflow and reduce the efficiency of the system. A regular preventive maintenance program ensures that all HVAC components are operating at peak system efficiency.  

Performance tested additives like ThermaClear can help reduce maintenance costs by combating oil fouling and restoring efficiency. By clearing the coil system from the inside and forming a permanent barrier that bonds to the interior of the coil walls in the HVAC system, ThermaClear ensures continuous efficiency and performance, minimizing the need for frequent maintenance and reducing the environmental impact of healthcare facilities.” 

— Michael Daly, chief technology officer, ECM Technologies 

“In healthcare facilities, most HVAC systems provide an in-depth preventive maintenance service and cleaning once a year and three times annually for an operating inspection and filter changes. This helps ensure that systems are operating optimally.” 

— David Santo, director of mechanical services, Siemens Smart Infrastructure USA 

“Each facility is different, but at the absolute minimum, systems should have some degree of inspection every three months and thorough maintenance conducted annually. Depending on the outdoor environment and processes occurring indoors, monthly or even bi-weekly maintenance of things like air filters may be warranted.” 

— Steve Opromolla, mid-Atlantic sales engineer, Fujitsu 

Jeff Wardon, Jr. is the assistant editor for the facilities market.  

June 30, 2023

Topic Area: HVAC

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