Keeping internal temperatures tolerably cool is important for any business, particularly during the brutal heat of the summer months, and installing a commercial/industrial grade air conditioning system is the most efficient and effective way to keep your business premises tolerably cool. However, if you run a commercial printing business, choosing the right air conditioning system is particularly vital.
Unlike other commercial air conditioning systems, which only have to keep your employees cool, the air conditioning system used in a print room must also be able to counteract the tremendous heat created by commercial printing presses. To make sure your chosen AC system is up to the unique challenge of cooling a print room, keep the following guidelines in mind when choosing your air conditioning system:
Choose a powerful system
Even a single printing press produces a large amount of heat when run for extended periods, and larger print rooms running multiple presses will require a powerful, efficient air conditioning system to be installed to prevent the presses from overheating. Air conditioning systems that use evaporative cooling processes are particularly suitable for cooling print rooms, as they are capable of providing powerful cooling without using an inordinate (and expensive) amount of energy to do so.
Make sure your system has high-grade filters
During most printing processes, a certain amount of the liquid ink used is evaporated by the heat created by the printing machines, causing it to become an airborne vapour. This vapour can cause serious problems if allowed to enter the internal components of an air conditioning system in significant quantities, and many air conditioning systems are fitted with basic filters that are not dense enough to catch the microscopic droplets of airborne ink before the enter the guts of the system.
You should therefore opt for an air conditioning system fitted with high-grade filters capable of catching these tiny ink particles, or have specialised filters professionally installed in a new system that lacks them. HEPA (High Efficiency Particle Air) filters are considered the gold standard of air conditioning filters, and will serve you well. Electrostatic filters can also be useful; these filters do not have a physical mesh, but instead create static electricity which attracts ink particles to the filter and prevents them from entering the system.
Keep humidity levels in mind
Excessive humidity levels are obviously anathema to a commercial printing operation, causing the paper and printing media you use to become damaged by moisture. However, certain types of paper are also damaged and bleached by excessively dry air. Since an air conditioning system can dramatically alter the humidity level of a room, you should choose a system with a built-in humidity control suite. This will allow you to keep humidity at optimal levels without relying on separate humidifier and dehumidifier systems.