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American Air Filter International
American Air Filter International




Hospital filtration audit leads to energy savings, improved indoor air quality

See how AAF helped a hospital system reduce energy needs.

The Filtration Situation

As a long-time AAF customer, this hospital system’s three campuses had installed a variety of AAF final filters — high-efficiency filtration for removing small particles from the airstream — to meet clean air needs. Depending on the application, installations included DriPak®, VariCel® and VariCel® M-Pak filters, as well as some HEPA filters in a new surgical suite.

Hospital-related infections can have significant economic consequences for any healthcare facility. That, along with the overarching need to provide clean air for patients, visitors and staff — led to the hospital system weighing an upgrade to its final filters.

Technical Situation

At the time, the hospitals had various air handling units in use, ranging from 2- 30 years of service. The customer consulted AAF for help determining the benefits of upgrading its final filters.

An AAF representative performed an air filtration audit that showed the need for improvements, particularly in the older AHUs.

The AAF Solution

AAF presented three solutions to help the hospital system make the best decision for its IAQ and budget requirements. The solutions were categorized as good, better and best.

Continue using MERV 14 VariCel M-Pak filters and upgrade where necessary. Upgrade filter racks as needed, and inspect/replace gaskets and latches to ensure bypass is kept to a minimum. This solution offered the least cost with slightly better IAQ levels than before.

Upgrade all final filters and filter racks to MERV 15 VariCel® VXL filters. Compared to the VariCel M-Pak filters, this option demonstrated energy cost savings and improved the efficiency rating of all final filters on this level. It also allowed for a longer filter life cycle and improved airflow.

Upgrade final filters to AAF MEGAcel I filter with ePTFE Technology. Typically, traditional HEPA filters have a much higher airflow resistance and would not be used without a costly upgrade to the air handling units. However, the MEGAcel I filter offered something different — HEPA filtration with the lowest possible resistance. This option combines both optimal IAQ levels and energy savings.

Upgrade Benefits

Ultimately, the hospital system decided to upgrade all three campuses to AAF MEGAcel I filters for the critical areas of the hospitals. MEGAcel I filters meet the demanding airflow and efficiency requirements of critical applications where airborne contaminants must be carefully controlled.

Once the MEGAcel I filters were installed, a particle count test was conducted in the AHU system. This test measured particulates in the system upstream and downstream from the newly installed MEGAcel I filters. These were compared to the MERV 14 filter particle counts. The results verified a dramatic improvement to the hospital’s air quality.

The hospital system also decided to upgrade patient care and non-critical areas using AAF VariCel VXL filters. PerfectPleat® HC M8 filters were used as prefilters. The hospital system now has substantial validation that it is providing the best air quality achievable for its patients and staff.

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