Daikin VRV Expands to Meet Market Demands
Chris Bellshaw, director, VRV product marketing for Daikin AC Americas, says Daikin’s North American VRV (variable refrigerant volume) initiatives continue to attract new customers, as they realize VRV has the comfort answers they seek. Acceptance has grown among all groups: contractors, engineers, building owners and occupants.
“It’s come down to people becoming more familiar with VRV technology, seeing it used on large and small buildings, and seeing the general manner in which the market is going in regards to growth in different vertical sectors,” Bellshaw says. “Daikin VRV technology has spread to areas where it was previously not very common. Schools have been a focus, however, VRV is also being seen as an alternative solution in multi-family applications.”
Bellshaw says engineers, building owners and contractors are selecting VRV based on its efficiency, comfort and zone control.
“And, many times, in the multi-family sector, you’re looking at VRV’s overall impact on the entire building. Much of that is dependant on what type of system was in use previously. If you’re using VRV to replace mid- to high-efficiency split systems, you’re helping to reduce the amount of piping chase, so there’s more leasable square footage. And in some of the more high-density metro areas, when you can remove condensers from a courtyard or roof space, that becomes usable space.
Bellshaw relates a number of product enhancements available in Daikin’s commercial VRV systems, improvements that help installers, service techs and occupants.
“We continuously look at new ideas as we launch new equipment, to make the commissioning and start-up procedure as trouble-free as it can possibly be. We’ve been able to put it through a run check, and check for different aspects of system pressures and temperature sensors. Daikin VRV has automatic refrigerant charge, so the system can optimize itself and take in the right amount of refrigerant,” Bellshaw says.
An improvement for field teams is new seven-second displays on outdoor units. This enables technicians to easier see what is happening with the system. This has been in place for some time, however, Daikin is continuing to optimize the feature.
One exciting new product is VRV Aurora, for cold climates. It can heat down to -22F (-30C).
“That’s an industry-leading jump that now gives contractors the option of using the heat pump system instead of something else’s. So if they had to use electric heat or if gas heat didn’t make sense in the layout, we now provide options,” Bellshaw explains.
Another innovation from Daikin is a DOAS (direct outside air system) ventilation system that can be connected to Daikin VRV outdoor units. This allows the operation of a heat pump with preconditioned outside air.
“There are gas heat options and energy recovery options, all designed to be connected to our outdoor heat recovery units, so you can provide preconditioned air or neutral air to that space with hot gas reheat. Daikin is the first manufacturer to provide both a dedicated outdoor air system (DOAS) and VRV, from the same manufacturer, that can be connected directly to one another, providing a proprietary plug-and-play VRV/DOAS system,” Bellshaw says. — by Terry McIver