To Lo Pro Or Not To Low Pro / Ordering The Wrong Air Curtains Could Cost You Big Money
June 25, 2016 - Uncategorized - 0 Comments
You might want to get all of the facts by using the manufacturer’s specifications & submittals before making a choice on what kind of air curtain you really need for the application that you need it for. You’d be surprised how many maintenance & engineering personnel order the wrong air curtains for their own company; along with the wrong size of air curtains.
One of the key things you should do is measure and find out how much room you are working with above the opening that the air curtain will be covering. When dealing with air curtains; the name Lo Pro or Low Profile means a number of things when it comes to selecting the proper air curtain for your job or project.
Low Profile air curtains are made to fit more easily above door openings than standard air curtains do. They are typically 8” to 8 ¾” high; making it an easier fit for almost any type of facility. Air curtains are designed to perform two major functions. The two major functions that almost all air curtains perform are stopping flying insects from entering a facility; and environmental separation; which means the separation of temperatures.
How well the air curtains perform is very important to people purchasing the air curtains; and to allot of health department inspectors. This is where the term CFM comes into play. CFM stands for Cubic Feet per Minute; which defines the strength of an air curtain. An air curtain having a low CFM rating might not blow down hard enough to stop the flying insects from entering through an opening; or colder weather from entering a facility.
A low profile air curtain doesn’t have the height of a standard, high velocity, or extra power air curtain. Air curtains work using a motorized spinning fan system, often called the squirrel cage. Squirrel cages differ in size based on the depth & height of the air curtains exterior casing.
Larger units using larger squirrel cages produce more CFM and use a higher HP (Horse Power) than smaller unit use. The higher the HP; the higher the CFM and air velocity.
Low Profile air curtains for smaller openings typically have lower CFM than even a standard air curtain does. Due to the lower CFM rating on The Low Profile models of air curtains; the ideal application for them is a installing one over a drive through window at a fast food restaurant where the air curtain only has to blow down 4 to 6 feet. They are more than enough air curtain for the job at hand.
They also offer a low dBA decibel rating at no more than 59; which is very easy on the ears. There are many people purchasing Low Profile air curtains for larger openings in order to satisfy a health department official. Granted, you might be able to feel some air blowing down from a 36” wide Low Profile air curtain at 84” down to the ground, however; it’s not enough air to perform the assigned task.
Health Department Officials will feel this out and make the Low Profile air curtain purchaser replace the Low Profile air curtain, with a standard air curtain that is made to blow down air to the 84” inches down.
The cost to the purchaser of switching out units is very big bucks. This starts with a 30% restocking fee and freight costs back to the manufacturer for the return of the Low Profile air curtain. There will also be the cost of obtaining a new standard air curtain to replace the low profile one. Since the standard air curtains are more costly and will also cost more big bucks.
The best rule of thumb is to have all of your measurements ready for the air curtain sales rep prior to ordering any type of air curtain.
You will be doing yourself a huge favor by doing it right the first time.