Hydronic Frost Heave Systems

Commercial freezers and cold storage facilities play a crucial role in preserving perishable goods, but they also present challenges, particularly regarding the potential for frost heave to impact the structural integrity of the underlying slabs. Frost heave is the upward swelling of soil due to freezing water which poses a risk to freezer slabs by causing uneven settling, potential damage, and can compromise insulation and the functionality of the freezer itself. For these reasons, its necessary to carefully engineer solutions to mitigate its impact below cold stores.  

Hydronic frost heave mitigation systems have emerged as a reliable and energy-efficient solution. A key advantage of these systems is their innovative use of waste heat generated by the chillers, heat that would otherwise not be used. Not only does capturing this energy enhance the overall energy efficiency of the facility but also positions hydronic systems as a sustainable and eco-friendly choice when designing a commercial freezer. Central Heating New Zealand has been involved in designing frost heave systems around the country & our dedicated engineering team can assist with the design and supply of these systems, ensuring a comprehensive and expertly tailored solution for each project. 

Understanding the Efficiency of Hydronic Solutions

In traditional refrigeration systems, chillers generate a substantial amount of heat during the cooling process, overseas projects like this would often be co-ordinated with infrastructure such as community pools to ensure that this heat could be put to good use but in New Zealand, we often don’t have the infrastructure to make this happen. Hydronic frost heave mitigation systems can capitalize on this otherwise unused resource, redirecting the waste heat to warm the water circulating through embedded pipes in the structural slab. This strategic utilization not only prevents frost heave but also results in a significantly reduced environmental footprint compared to traditional heating methods such as electric resistive elements which can add significant running costs over the life of a Cold store. 

Benefits of Hydronic Solutions 

  1. Cost Savings: By repurposing waste heat, hydronic systems reduce the need for additional energy sources, resulting in cost savings for facility operators. This cost-effectiveness makes the implementation of hydronic systems an attractive option for cold storage facilities. 
  2. Environmental Impact: The utilization of waste heat contributes to a more sustainable operation, as it minimizes the environmental impact associated with energy consumption. This aligns with the growing emphasis on eco-friendly practices in modern industrial settings. 
  3. Overall System Efficiency: Integrating waste heat into the hydronic system enhances the overall efficiency of the refrigeration process. This synergy between frost heave mitigation and waste heat recovery creates a harmonious and energy-efficient solution for cold storage facilities.

Central Heating New Zealand's Expertise 

Central Heating New Zealand's engineering team brings a wealth of expertise to the design and supply of hydronic frost heave mitigation systems. Their commitment to tailored solutions, efficient heat distribution, and waste heat integration ensures that each project receives a reliable and energy-efficient system. 

Expertise in Hydronic System Design 

  1. Tailored Solutions: Central Heating New Zealand's engineering team specializes in tailoring hydronic systems to the specific needs of our customers. Each project undergoes a meticulous design process to address the unique challenges of the environment. 
  2. Efficient Heat Distribution: The team focuses on optimizing the layout and configuration of the piping system to ensure even heat distribution across the structural slab. This attention to detail is essential for preventing the formation of ice lenses and mitigating the risk of frost heave. 
  3. Redundancy: when designing frost heave system, Central Heating New Zealand designs a high degree of redundancy and specifies a specific configuration of underfloor loops to ensure that if for some reason a loop is damaged or has to be abandoned, there is sufficient ability for the adjacent loops to make up the shortfall. 

Support Throughout the Project Lifecycle 

  1. Consultation and Planning: The engineering team provides expert consultation during the planning phase, working closely with facility owners, architects, consultants, and contractors to understand project requirements and objectives. 
  2. Detailed Design: Central Heating New Zealand's engineers produce detailed design plans, taking into account factors such as the facility layout, insulation, and temperature requirements. This ensures the hydronic system is precisely tailored to the specific needs of each project. during our detailed design we will also complete an underfloor layout, system schematic and wiring diagram to suit the projects needs. 
  3. Supply of High-Quality Components: Central Heating New Zealand can not only assist with design but will also supply high-quality components for hydronic frost heave mitigation systems. This includes the pipes, thermal store & pumps, ensuring reliability and longevity. 

Hydronic frost heave mitigation systems as designed & supplied by Central Heating New Zealand stand out as a cutting-edge solution for preserving the structural integrity of slabs in commercial freezers and cold storage facilities. Our dedicated engineering team plays a vital role in advancing the adoption of sustainable and effective frost heave mitigation solutions. With their expertise in tailored design, efficient heat distribution, and waste heat integration, they contribute to creating a harmonious and energy-efficient solution for cold storage environments, aligning with the global shift towards sustainable practices in the industrial sector.