The effect of solar gain on the workplace


The British heatwave could well be over and we will see a return to ‘normal’ summer temperatures.  As the temperatures drop, it might be thought that there is no longer a need for portable air conditioning, but on bright sunny days the inside of buildings will still heat up due to solar heat gain, especially in the city centres.  Although the sunlight may not be as strong, the lower angle of the sun means that it is shining into buildings for longer periods during daylight hours. 

Buildings that have fully-glazed facades are particularly prone to over-heating caused by solar gain.   Cities with a number of high rise, glass fronted buildings, such as London and Birmingham, are often 1–3°C warmer than rural locations.  To counter this effect, some buildings have solar control glass installed which reflects heat and reduces glare from the sun’s rays.  As well as being practical, it’s also a requirement under Approved Documents L1A and L2S, which require the limit of solar gains through the summer period.

In the extreme temperatures we have been experiencing for the past few weeks, many of our customers found that solar glass or shading louvres were not enough to keep their business premises cool and comfortable.  LondonCool and Midland Cool were able to supply a large number of portable air conditioning units for hire, in most cases with same day or next day delivery.  This was particularly crucial for businesses in London and Birmingham, both for staff and for premises with computer or serverrooms or data centres.

It has been found that understanding the solar gain effect and being able to cool the workplace can improve safety, productivity and efficiency in the working environment.  Without additional room air conditioning, existing fixed air cooling systems have to work much harder, shortening their life and increasing electricity consumption.

If your workplace needs additional or continued cooling, then please visit our website www.londoncool.com or www.midlandcool.com and complete our online form for a free survey or to get a quote, contact us via our Facebook page or phone us on 0800 440 444.

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