The Washington Public Library hopes its saga of HVAC issues is finally coming to an end.

At the beginning of the month the city council approved the library purchasing parts to repair the library’s HVAC system, which include a new coil and compressor, costing the city $15,082.

Library Director Nelson Appell said he anticipates the project being completed this week.

According to Appell, unit one of the three-unit HVAC system did not need to receive repairs but unit two did, which was completed last week. 

Unit three was this past week’s project, which was scheduled to receive its new parts Wednesday, May 20.

Background

In February, a fan coil and compressor broke in the Washington Public Library’s HVAC system.

The city brought in CTS Group, St. Louis, to examine the issue. The goal was to see if the current HVAC setup was salvageable or needed to be replaced entirely.

CTS investigated the issue and suggested the city use a vendor certified in dealing with the Daikin-brand HVAC unit. Jarrell Mechanical Contractors, St. Louis, was recommended.

Jarrell used Daikin-specific diagnostic equipment to investigate the HVAC system for any possible issues.

A problem with the fresh air temperature was identified, Appell said. The variable range was, at some point, set at 50 degrees. Jarrell said it should have been set at 4 or 5 degrees.

That meant the HVAC system was likely working harder than it should have and putting wear and tear onto parts.

Jarrell said with the range adjusted, and the new parts ordered, it was possible the system would be salvageable and a full replacement wouldn’t be needed right now. 

Appell noted that the typical lifespan for the HVAC system is roughly 15 years. The system is about seven years old now.

Appell said the city hopes the recent fixes extend the life of the system, but did admit there is a potential the system will have to be replaced in seven and half years.

“There is a possibility that the system will have to be replaced, but that is an unknown for now,” Appell said.