APG Heating and Cooling Policies

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Though June has arrived, APG is still in meteorological spring. With this season brings fluctuating temperatures. One week, it may be well over 80 degrees; the next it may barely climb to 65 degrees.

In mid-May, APG experienced temperatures that reached 90 degrees. The high temperatures caused uncomfortable conditions within many buildings throughout the installation. Supervisors are reminded that it is the direct responsibility of an employee’s supervisor to ensure appropriate safety measures are followed. This includes the recognition of the potential for heat stress hazards, enforcement of heat stress precautions, and accommodation for these guidelines to be followed.

In an effort to adhere to the U.S. Army Energy Management Program, APG has created supporting regulation APGR 11-1 which prescribes policies, procedures, and responsibilities for the installation. The overall objective of the APG energy conservation plan is to ensure the availability, quality, and security of energy for the Army without degrading the environment, mission readiness, or the well-being of Soldiers.

Excerpts below are taken from Reg 11-1 to reinforce the policies during this period of fluctuating temperatures. Please keep in mind that according to Army policy (AR 420-1), authorization for heating or cooling startup is dictated by the weather forecast and not a set calendar date. The use of a non-heating/non-cooling season is critical for the shops to perform maintenance on the equipment prior to its service. As the DPW attempts to convey, the shops are extremely understaffed; therefore, maintenance and start-up are delayed.

Heating

  • During the heating season, temperatures in occupied facilities will be maintained in the range of 68 to 74 degrees Fahrenheit (F) during working hours and heating setback temperatures during unoccupied times shall be set in the range of 50 F to 60 F.
  • Temperatures in warehouses and similar active working spaces, like maintenance bays, will be in the range of 55 F to 65 F during occupancy and 40 F to 50 F during unoccupied periods.
  • Warehouses will not be heated if they are usually devoid of human activity and if freezing and condensation are not issues.
  • Chemical exhaust hoods will be shut down, or the exchange will be reduced, whenever possible.
  • Portable electric heating devices are prohibited unless approved by the APG Fire Department.

Cooling

  • Cooling season temperatures for occupied working and living spaces shall be maintained in the range of 72 F.
  • Cooling set-up temperatures during unoccupied times shall be set in the range of 80 F to 90 F.
  • Air conditioning will not be provided in warehousing, motor pools, auto repair garages, and other production/commercial operation facilities that require large amounts of exhaust and make up air for ventilation. Exception will be granted on a case-by-case basis for critical mission laboratories and other non-general office space with critical mission requirements. A written justification must be provided to the DPW for an exception to be granted.
  • Air conditioning will be shut off one hour before facilities are unoccupied. This also applies to window air-conditioning units. All efforts consistent with mission will be taken to close facilities on holidays and uniformed compressed work schedule days off. Exception is granted on a case-by-case basis for critical mission laboratories and other non-general office space with critical mission requirements. A written justification must be provided to the DPW for an exception to be granted.
  • Portable cooling devices are prohibited unless approved by the APG Fire Department and the Energy Office. Approval will require written justification by requesting authority.
  • Shades and blinds will be drawn to reduce direct sunlight.
  • Exterior doors and will be kept closed when air conditioners are operating.

Non Heating and Cooling season

Many APG building comfort condition systems are large two-pipe systems and must be converted from heating to cooling and vice versa. These conversions are not simple and require numerous hours to accomplish. Because of this technical requirement, cooling is not authorized until exterior temperatures have climbed to above 81 F before 3 p.m. for three consecutive workdays and the Directorate of Public Works has used reasonable judgment that heating will not be needed again until next fall.

Heating may begin in the fall when daily high temperatures have fallen to below 65 F for three consecutive workdays and the DPW has made the determination that cooling will not be needed again until the next spring.

The Director of the DPW, in conjunction with the Garrison Commander, will make the final determination as to the appropriate time to start the heating and cooling seasons. For uniform fairness, this policy will be applied to all including family housing, small building systems, window air conditioning, and portable heating.

“All tenant using Army installation facilities are directed to be fully engaged with the landholding commands, in support of their efforts to reduce energy and water consumption and install renewable technologies. The Army’s goal is to obtain secure access to energy and water as well as to manage our natural resources with a goal of net zero energy, waster, and solid waste.” – Hon. Katherine Hammack, former ASA.

For more information or questions regarding Energy Policy, contact Devon Rock at 410-306-1125, or devon.a.rock.civ@mail.mil. The Energy/Net Zero Sharepoint site can be found at: https://army.deps.mil/army/cmds/imcom_usag5/aberdeen/dpw/ENZ/

By APG Directorate of Public Works

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