Commercial HVAC in Eugene, OR is such an issue for brewers that the Brewer’s Association puts out an energy manual on this very topic. Cost savings and efficiency are the top concerns and are often very industry-specific. Food and employee safety regulations add more to this complex picture and before long, it appears impossible for any small brewery to stay in business.
However, this can all become manageable by hiring a commercial HVAC specialist who understands the needs and often delicate balances. In fact, when asked what they would do differently, seasoned brewers indicate they would hire local specialists for their HVAC needs. Here are four of those needs that are unique to breweries.
1. Customized refrigeration
Some beers are meant to be served cold and others at room temperature. Health standards also place requirements on keeping beverages cool before being served. In order to keep beers at their optimal temperatures, this often means separate refrigeration elements for each type of beer, sometimes for each keg attached to a tap. This can be challenging for contractors who deal primarily with large restaurant freezers, but for an HVAC company that frequently helps breweries, this is a normal occurrence.
Fumes and smells are just facts of the fermentation process. Venting is also required for the early boiling steps as steam cannot build up inside if unvented. If you have employees and visitors, safety standards come into play along with ensuring beer quality. The trick is to offer the venting without risking beer quality due to outside elements. This delicate balance means adjustments to the HVAC system that are unique to places that brew beer or make wine.
3. Cost savings
Brewing means high energy consumption. The brewing process includes boiling, heating, mixing and cooling with many extremes that put demands on HVAC systems. A skilled technician can make adjustments for energy savings to not only assure the long-term function of the system but also prevent large utility bills from threatening a small brewery’s financial solvency.
4. Environment temperatures
In the extremes of heating and cooling, there is also an ambient temperature to maintain for the safety and comfort of employees and visitors. This can be extremely demanding for HVAC systems; if a brewery is boiling mash in the dead of summer, not only does the system need to provide heat for that process, but it must also account for keeping areas cooled for the human inhabitants. As it is not always practical to match brewing needs with environmental ones, HVAC needs to be streamlined to manage these conflicting functions.
Breweries that double as venues need to give this extra consideration. A too-hot brewpub is likely to push away customers in the summer as much as not enough heating in the winter. Employees may be accustomed to periods of extreme temperatures but the same cannot be said for consumers.
Whether your brewery requires an upgrade or you are looking to produce the next big summer IPA, contact American Refrigeration Inc for all of your needs regarding commercial HVAC in Eugene, OR. We can create a customized system that will support your beer making, employee safety and customer comfort all at once while ensuring efficiency and controlling costs.