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2023.09.11 Aggreko

Using hydronic heating to prepare for the coldest construction conditions



Discussing heating applications during the momentous heatwave striking North America in 2023 may seem like an odd thing to you. But we can assure you, the same way you must plan for record-breaking heat ahead of time, you must also have a plan in place for when those temperatures reach record lows. Heating is essential for construction projects to stay on schedule through the cold winter months, and this blog will guide you through the benefits and applications of hydronic heating – and why it is important to secure now rather than later.

When it comes to heating solutions, Implementing the wrong one can lead to problems that may cause lengthy delays and unplanned costs.

Take open-flame units, for example. Yes, they deliver heat, but they also fill the area with carbon emissions and moisture. Not only is this potentially dangerous for workers, but it also delays any jobs that involve water-based finishes. These heaters are a fire risk and typically require additional personnel costs for fire watch.

Indirect-fired heaters overcome these issues by keeping emissions and moisture outside the building. But they offer limited heat distribution. A significant amount of heat and airflow is lost through the ducts and the spaces created to get them inside. This results in multiple cold zones in the space they are heating – far from ideal when you want uniform temperatures throughout to ensure both worker comfort and the right heating conditions for construction materials. Furthermore, fuel consumption from these heaters is greater than hydronic heaters as they are heating outside air – meaning you will take on an increase in fuel costs.

What is the best heater for your construction site?

Hydronic heaters are installed outside of the building to ensure that all of the byproducts of heat generation don’t come inside. But instead of feeding the heat in through simple ducts, it is transferred by heating food-grade glycol and circulating it via hoses to fan coils placed inside the building. This ensures that heat is evenly distributed, and thermostats on the fan coils allow you to maintain the right temperature across your entire heating site plan.

Review the top 5 pros of hydronic heating below:

  • Get close to replicating your permanent HVAC solution
  • Save up to 50% on fuel costs compared with other types of temporary heaters
  • Reduce carbon emissions
  • Prevent delays caused by humidity
  • Fast drying times allow for quicker jobs

How effective are hydronic heating systems?

In one situation, Aggreko was selected by PCL Construction to heat the construction site of a new medical facility in Calgary throughout the winter.

We provided a total of (42) hydronic heaters along with other equipment to ensure a constant supply of clean, low-humidity air that kept workers safe and reduced drying time.

Aggreko provided all the required heating for the full four years of the project schedule from ground thaw to completion of construction. And thanks to using natural gas as the primary fuel source for the hydronic heaters, we delivered even further reductions in both fuel costs and carbon emissions.

Hydronic heaters are versatile, and can benefit other applications including:

  • Thawing ground
  • Curing concrete
  • Heating fluids
  • Providing emergency heat in the case of equipment failure (interim boiler bypass applications)
  • Heat load testing of chillers

Trust Aggreko for your temporary construction heating

Aggreko has extensive experience across the globe in providing the best, most efficient temporary heating for construction projects. Our 900k BTU, 1.2m BTU, and 1.8m BTU hydronic heaters can be used wherever warm air is required.

With our large fleet strategically located at multiple sites across North America, we can have equipment quickly installed wherever you need it. However complex or difficult your site plan is, our expert heating engineers can design a solution that fits all your requirements and keep your project on track, on budget - all while delivering significant fuel and emissions savings.

Learn more about our solutions for the construction industry

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