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30 November 2020
As we know all too well, sometimes construction projects seem to take forever to complete. However, there are also times when construction projects are finished well ahead of schedule. If most of a building’s construction is finished, and the only thing preventing completion is something minor such as the delivery of cooling equipment, it can be excruciating to have to wait those final weeks. When two new shipping centers of a world-renowned retailer were all but finished and ready for operation, they tasked their mechanical contractor with providing the facilities with cooling as soon as possible. It would take weeks to have the permanent cooling equipment delivered, so the contractor looked to Mobile Air & Power Rentals to provide a temporary cooling solution.
The two shipping centers, about an hour away from each other in Illinois, each had several truck bays that could serve as entry points for cooling ventilation. A sales representative had determined that each site would make use of numerous 25-ton air conditioners, 17 at one location and 8 at the other. A team of five installers spent a couple of days at each site, finishing quickly with the help of the mechanical contractor.
Since the job had to be semi-permanent, however, the customer wanted to use a durable material for the ducting panels in the bay doors instead of something like plywood boards. Thankfully the mechanical contractor knew exactly how to help. They fabricated sheet metal panels for the bay doors, allowing the ducting to be secured in place in order to provide the shipping center with cooling. The panels were so useful that MAPR purchased them for use on later projects. Although aggressive storms blew some of the ducts off at one location for a couple of days, the temporary cooling solution otherwise served the shipping centers perfectly for the duration of the job. Both sites needed the rental coolers for about two months, allowing the company to begin providing their excellent services well ahead of schedule. When both the customer and their mechanical contractor needed a rental cooling company that they could depend on, Mobile Air & Power Rentals was more than ready to answer their call.
6 November 2020
Reservoirs are an invaluable component of water availability for any locality, as they provide an abundant source of potable water during droughts and periods of limited water availability. While many reservoirs are natural or manmade lakes, some are also completely manmade, underground structures that are closed off from the outside. One such underground reservoir in Texas suffered minor damage in the aftermath of an earthquake, revealing a crack in the reservoir’s concrete and epoxy sealant. The city’s water department had hired a construction firm to grind down the crack and reseal the area, but they had one major issue that needed to be addressed: since the reservoir was a confined space, it would require significant ventilation for it to be safely occupied by construction workers. The scorching Texas heat would also make the space unbearably hot. Knowing they needed a reliable partner to provide ventilation, cooling, and other needs for the project, the construction firm contacted Mobile Air & Power Rentals for help.
The original request for equipment had started relatively small, only needing a few rental air conditioners and a generator to power the units, although the job quickly grew to including more generators, power distribution equipment, air movers, and even lights to facilitate the grinding and coating process. One dedicated member of our team spent a couple of days over the span of a few weeks installing all of the equipment, and it was not without its challenges. The reservoir was located inside the face of a mountain, and the only access was on a roof far up a rocky hill that lacked any real road. Two 40-ton air conditioners had to be brought up the hill by an all-terrain forklift, and since equipment could not be placed on the reservoir’s roof, the units had to be staged about 35 feet away on the hill itself. Additionally, the two existing openings on the roof were reserved for employee and equipment access, so a company was hired to make two holes in opposite corners of the roof for ducting. Since the grinding process produced hazardous particulates, inside air couldn’t be recycled, and the AC units could only cool outside air before being vented in.
The air conditioners weren’t the only problematic part of the install. The rental generators had to be staged at the bottom of the hill, so thousands of feet of cable had to be used to bring power up to the reservoir. Inside the reservoir, spider boxes were used to give construction workers flexibility with their power availability, and 7000 lumen LED lights were used to illuminate the work area. Lastly, several 4-foot air movers were placed to help circulate the air. Containments were also used around the generators to prevent any potential spillage from entering the soil and overall environment. Overall, three generators were used: a 220 kVA generator powered the air conditioners, a 150 kVA unit powered the construction firm’s grinding equipment, and a 45 kVA unit powered a nearby security building.
While the grinding process is complete, meaning that equipment is slowly being taken off the site, the coating will need time to cure. The air must be between 75-85 degrees Fahrenheit to properly cure, so the air conditioners and two of the generators will remain onsite until the job is completely finished. The rental cooling and ventilation solution is expected to be in place for a total of four months. Thanks to the help of Mobile Air & Power Rentals, this construction firm was able to perform critically important work on a Texas city’s reservoir.
13 October 2020
Sometimes our technicians come across straightforward jobs that are minimally demanding and take a matter of hours to install. Other times, they face enormous buildings where ducting and cable need to be run from one corner to the other, hundreds of feet away. This was the case for the install team at one Long Island shipping distribution center, stationed in a hanger previously used to manufacture military fighter jets. The shipping center, which has several hundred thousand square feet of floor space, had suddenly endured a breakdown of all 15 of its 25-ton rooftop cooling units one day. Since the shipping company operates under regulatory standards that include indoor temperature requirements, it was vital for cooling to be restored before employees threatened to strike. When they contacted American Spot Cooling & Power Rental, we were prepared to quickly install a temporary cooling solution in the complex building.
Initially, things did not bode well for the job ahead of our sales representative, who was tasked with engineering a solution for the distribution center. Upon his first walk of the site, he discovered that the building only had two viable access points for ducting, which were both located in one corner of the hanger building. He designed a 350-ton cooling solution for the building, no easy feat when both ducting and power cable would have to be run across the length of the building’s ceiling. Nonetheless, the representative created an effective design for the rental air conditioners and rental power distribution, and a team of four technicians arrived to install the equipment.
They initially installed eight 25-ton air conditioners, although an additional 140 tons of cooling were added soon afterwards. About 2,000 feet of cable and 2,000 feet of ducting were run along the ceiling, as safety regulations prohibited placing the materials on the building's floor. Due to the particular constraints of the building, the installation techs needed to think outside the box in order to strategically distribute power to the units. This entailed securing a spider box by the ceiling, a creative solution that complied with OSHA requirements. By the time the technicians were finished, the installation had culminated in exemplary work that gained the attention of other companies within the rental industry for its excellence.
During the months it took the distribution center to repair its permanent AC system, the rental cooling solution kept the busy employees under cool conditions for work.
21 September 2020
In a country where two day shipping is almost considered the norm, it’s easy to forget about the facilities that make it all possible. When one shipping facility’s main chiller system broke down, and the workers’ union threatened to strike if cooling was not restored in a timely manner, it became crucial to quickly provide temporary cooling while repairs were made.
The mechanical contractor hired to repair the system quickly called American Spot Cooling & Power Rental, who responded promptly and was on site the same day. ASCAPR coordinated with the facility’s trucking department, and rental equipment was delivered the next day without blocking loading bays or interrupting the overall hustle and bustle of the facility. This was imperative because shipments could not be delayed, yet cooling needed to be restored as soon as possible. ASCAPR’s fast response time and ability to provide turnkey solutions meant that these needs were met. With a team of four technicians and one project manager they were able to install the rental cooling equipment in just two days.
The site included 8 80-ton rental air conditioners, as well as rental distribution panels and transformers in order to use the facility’s own electrical supply. From June until August of last year, the rental air conditioners provided cooling while the mechanical contractor was able to repair the broken system. During that time, technicians performed routine maintenance such as oil changes and air filter replacements. With the help of American Spot Cooling & Power Rental, this facility was able to keep up with all of their shipments of office supplies, BOGO jeggings, and more.
15 September 2020
Among the busy streets of Boston, one building suffered a failure of almost half its cooling system in the heat of the summer. A mechanical contractor, tasked with fixing the 400 ton direct expansion cooler on the roof, needed to provide the building with temporary cooling while they made their repairs. They called on American Spot Cooling & Power Rental for their rental air conditioning needs, and we were immediately ready to respond with the perfect solution for the building. Once the job had been assessed and planned out, the ASCAPR team was ready to roll out.
ASCAPR delivered two 30 ton rental air conditioners, rental generators needed to supply the system’s power, and other accessory components such as ducting and power cables. In just one day, a team of five technicians and management staff installed the entire site. A rather narrow side street made placement of the rental coolers particularly tough, but the team was able to park the units in a manner befitting that of Boston’s unforgiving roads — half on the street, half on the sidewalk.
The ducting had to be placed on the outside wall, so part of the day was spent running a duct up the length of the building. Strong winds and the building's significant height meant that the duct had to be secured and tied off at regular intervals. Once the job had been completed, the rental cooling system served the contractor for over a month while they made the necessary repairs on the DX cooler.
3 September 2020
Boston is one of the world’s leading tech cities, featuring innovative firms like Boston Dynamics and educational institutions such as MIT. However, even the brightest minds in the world can’t work at their best when equipment and room temperatures get too hot! Such is the case for one engineering co-op, where tech innovators work on projects like NASA space suits and advanced robots.
Unfortunately, the company is located in a rather poorly air conditioned brick loft, where the electronic assembly room becomes excessively hot during the summer. The high rise isn’t an inviting site for HVAC installations — two 12 inch openings in the building are all that’s available for ducting, whereas equipment ducts are usually a minimum of 20 inches. For this reason, other rental spot cooling companies turned down this job; but where others saw a problem not worth dealing with, American Spot Cooling & Power Rental found a challenge in proving its ability to always find a solution.
The site is rather small, thus only requiring a single 5-ton air conditioning unit. One technician spends a few hours every year installing a rental air conditioner at the loft, but even a job that seems simple has its challenges. To manage the building’s ducting restriction, a splitter converts the cooler’s 20 inch port into two 12 inch ports, just small enough for two ducts to fit through the openings. The employees also disfavor emptying condensate tanks, so a 50 foot hose runs partly through the ceiling to the nearest drain. Once installed, the unit operates for the entire summer. Thanks to ASCAPR’s commitment to never saying no to a problem, the tech firm relies on us each year for their cooling needs.
25 August 2020
Despite the endless challenges caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, many organizations and institutions are taking whatever means necessary to return to some meaningful sense of normalcy. For some universities, this means resuming classes for the fall semester while remaining in accordance with regulations and suggestions from government authorities. One Massachusetts university specifically wanted to resume in-person classes for the fall. Unfortunately, they found that some parts of their campus had insufficient ventilation. In order to provide a safe environment for its students, the university called on Mobile Air & Power Rentals to provide a temporary cooling and ventilation solution to some of its facilities.
The university specifically sought a ventilation solution for its gymnasium as well as its dining hall. Adequate Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) for these spaces would require about 13 air changes per hour in the dining hall and 6 air changes per hour in the gym. This would require an additional 40,000 CFM in the dining hall and 20,000 CFM in gym. Since the gym didn’t have any cooling, however, they also desired the ventilation to be provided by rental cooling equipment.
Soon after the turnkey solution was ordered by the director of facilities, a team of four technicians arrived onsite to install the equipment. For the gymnasium, the team spent six hours installing four 25-ton air conditioners just outside the facility. The install went smoothly, but not without challenges: since the units could only be placed on top of a parking garage connected to the gym, the team needed to use multiple smaller units and a low mast forklift to carry each air conditioner to the top level.
Eventually it was time to work on the dining hall. Since the dining hall already had cooling, it only needed two 20,000 CFM air handling units to supplement the existing ventilation. Polyduct ran across the hall’s ceiling joists to better distribute the airflow, although a raised platform in the facility meant that technicians needed to use a single man lift to secure the ducting. After an additional eight hours, the ventilation solution was finally complete.
Each unit was tied into the campus’ power. The director of facilities wanted to use their own power disconnect, but the ordered disconnect was on backorder for quite a while. Instead, we provided our own rental disconnect for the time being. The university is providing their own MERV 13 filters for every unit and will replace them while the equipment is in place for the entire fall semester. With the help of a ventilation and cooling solution from Mobile Air & Power Rentals, this university was able to successfully provide as safe of an environment as possible for its students in the face of a pandemic.
19 August 2020
Leaky pipes are never good news, but when the pipe in question supplies drinking water to thousands of people, the problem takes on a new level of seriousness. Thus, when a New England Water Authority identified a leak in one of their reservoir pipelines, it wasn’t just a simple fix for the local plumber. Inspecting and repairing such a leak necessitated the diversion of water from the pipe via the use of water pumps, which in turn required a temporary source of power.
With nine water pumps in place and ready to be powered, the reservoir’s pump contractor called upon American Spot Cooling & Power Rental to provide the necessary rental power supply. Since the reservoir must be free of any pollutants, the job required vital environmental considerations and had to comply with various regulations. ASCAPR’s gas powered rental generators needed to be at least 100 feet away from any water, and had to be contained within berms in order to contain any possible equipment leakage.
A team of four technicians spent three days on-site installing the rental equipment. Land had to be cleared and covered with pads to provide stable support for nine generators, each supplying up to 500 kilowatts. 10,000 feet of rental cable supplied power to the contractor’s variable frequency drive controllers, and additional cabling ran to the pumps. Since the generators had to be a significant distance away from the water and pumps, the power cables were run through 18 inch high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, partially buried underground.
Once American Spot Cooling & Power Rental had finished the installation, the water supply successfully bypassed the damaged pipe and the Water Authority could make their repairs over the next five months. During that time, the pump contractor hired 24/7 maintenance staff to monitor the site. The pumps operated during the winter, so part of that maintenance included freeze protection measures for all of the equipment. Additionally, American Spot Cooling & Power Rental provided 250 hours of maintenance service including oil changes, filter changes, and leak inspections, although with extreme care due to the environmental considerations of the job.
11 August 2020
In October of 2018, Hurricane Michael left a trail of devastation in the Florida Panhandle, causing around $25 billion in damages that are still felt to this day. It made landfall in Mexico Beach, a nine mile strip of beach with numerous condominiums and single family homes. The beach was the hurricane’s “ground zero”, and had experienced extensive damage and a crippled infrastructure in its aftermath. It is no surprise, then, that six different customers called American Spot Cooling & Power Rental to service the beach after Hurricane Michael, culminating in the largest logistical task taken on by ASCAPR to date.
Between the six customers, nine condominiums and eleven single family homes were in need of rental power distribution, climate stabilization, and even property security. Overall, the project was massive in scope: 15 trucks delivered the rental equipment, and at one point ASCAPR processed 106 invoices a week. This job was especially challenging to coordinate, because employees came from nine different branches and equipment deliveries spanned multiple time zones, arriving at a ravaged locale with debris, sewage, and power lines scattered throughout the streets. On top of that, 350,000 gallons of contaminated water had to be pumped out of the area in an environmentally safe manner, and several hundred laborers needed housing in man camps.
The project has been finished for a while now, but at its peak eight technicians were present at any given moment to install various equipment. Additionally, about half of ASCAPR’s operations management staff visited the site at various points in the project, some staying to orchestrate the process through its entirety. At one point, 90 rental generators were installed, ranging from 25kW to 400kW, along with about 100 distribution panels and 15 miles of power cable. Almost all of ASCAPR’s smaller rental air conditioners were installed on Mexico Beach, consisting of about 500 units from one to one and a half tons capacity.
With lighting and 10 miles of fencing, American Spot Cooling & Power Rental provided property security to part of the beach. We also facilitated 60 climate-controlled containers to house victims of the storm while restoration efforts were made. Considering all aspects of the job, Mexico Beach has proven to be one of the most complex and multifaceted projects we have handled in our history. However, thanks to our prompt response times, experienced management and technician staff, and adeptness in creating the best solutions, ASCAPR was able to significantly aid restoration efforts in an area most critically impacted by Hurricane Michael.
3 August 2020
When it comes to shipping distribution centers, there's little room for error in the already frantic work environment. Any setback can create a massive challenge for a facility’s operations, and suddenly losing air conditioning poses quite a burden. At best, it’s a detriment that makes every employee’s life miserable for a few days, but at worst, it’s cause for a facility shutdown and even a worker’s strike. As one Pennsylvania warehouse faced an abrupt disruption of cooling amid the replacement of their chiller system, they called an engineering firm to design a solution. After estimating that cooling would take a week to restore, the firm then contacted American Spot Cooling & Power Rental, who was able to implement a solution within 48 hours.
Following the request by the engineering firm, American Spot Cooling & Power Rental designed their temporary cooling solution and delivered equipment immediately afterwards. What arrived on site was two 100-ton chillers, two 30-ton air conditioners, four 50-ton air handlers, 1000 feet of hose, and two miles of power cable. One operations manager spent 23 straight hours installing the rental chillers and cooling system, which included running cable along a 48 foot ceiling. After his committed effort towards a fast install, the distribution center had its cooling restored with minimum disruption.
As of right now, it is not clear how long the equipment will be in use before the permanent system is finally replaced. The fact that it can be used indefinitely, along with our fast response time, makes this case a prime example of the breathing room that our emergency services can provide.