UK heatwaves lead to massive spike in air conditioning interest

We are currently in the second heatwave of summer 2022, with temperatures rising once again well into the upper 30s for many parts of the country.

In response to increased consumer demand to keep cool during July’s record temperatures, Logic4training saw a massive spike in interest in related training. ‘F Gas course’ queries – an essential part of AC training – rose by 129%.

While we might miss the dizzy heights of 40+ this time around, it’s still going to be hot and if this year is anything to go by, ‘hot’ is something we will all have to get used to.

To date, mechanical cooling in the UK has been the preserve of commercial buildings, such as offices and manufacturing facilities, but with the unfortunate grip of global warming clearly taking hold, the marketplace is changing. According to a report published last year, less than 5% of homes in the UK currently have AC, but by the turn of the century it is predicted that 85% of cooling demand will be domestic.

The report, which was issued by government department, BEIS, echoed Logic4training’s findings, stating that ‘…hot weather spikes (consistent high temperatures for one or two weeks) can trigger much higher levels of enquiries resulting in installations within the year, or through customers planning for the following year.’

What’s clear is that cooling is becoming an increasing concern, providing new market opportunities for air conditioning engineers.

Air conditioning for the home

A knee-jerk reaction to the heat wave means many homeowners opt for a portable air conditioning unit, which can simply be plugged in. This is not the most efficient solution and will add considerable pounds to electricity bills which are usually lower in the summer.

In the future, energy efficient and dual-purpose technologies, like air source heat pumps (ASHPs) that provide both heating and cooling will become more popular. F Gas training is relevant for both AC and ASHPs, delivering year-round business for suitably trained installers.

What is F Gas training?

Flourinated gases (F-Gases) are used in air conditioning, refrigeration and some heat pump systems. Engineers working on these technologies need F Gas training to understand how to deal with these potentially dangerous substances safely and effectively, covering leak checking, refrigerant recovery, servicing, maintenance and installation.

The most harmful F-Gases, which are known as ‘Ozone Depleting Substances’ (ODS), are being phased out across Europe and the UK under the F-Gas Regulations, ensuring the latest cooling and heating technologies are energy efficient with minimal environmental impact.

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