Hurricane season in Myrtle Beach is June 1st through November 30th with most notable storms coming in late summer and early Fall. Around this time of year folks will start to see lots of information about hurricane preparedness. For us at Cooper, we get a lot of calls before and after big hurricanes about residential HVAC and electrical systems. It's a topic we've covered on our blog in the past, so check out some of the links below for detailed information about what you can do so your home electrical and HVAC systems weather this year's hurricane season.
In addition to cleaning outdoor HVAC of debris, you may want to also check that your unit is properly secured to its base. Hurricane winds can get above 150mph which can easily move something heavy like an outdoor condenser unit. Make sure the unit is anchored, and if not, consider hurricane tie-downs. You might also want to cover your unit with a tarp and bungee cord.
Many readers are likely aware of the list of things to have on hand should you experience a power outage: flashlights, batteries, water, non-perishable food, first aid, etc. But fewer are prepared for how to handle potential power surges. Protect yourself and your home appliances from power surges after full utility power is restores but making sure they are in their off positions while the power is out. The link above also covers some simple strategies for keeping your home cool while you wait to restore power.
Hurricanes at the beach bring lots of flash flooding which is dangerous and damaging in its own right. If your home has standing water, you may have a flood-damaged electrical system, and it's important that you don't enter your home until a licensed electrician or safety official says it's safe to do so.
In addition to electrical damage, you might also need to contend with water damage and mold. Mold and mildew after a hurricane pose serious health risks, so always contact a licensed mold removal and remediation professional such as MasterTech of Myrtle Beach to handle it. It's not something you can let "air out" or spray a little bleach on.
A flooded electrical system will likely need some replacing, but it's important to request a full electrical inspection beforehand. Structural damage to your home from flooding or high winds can be overwhelming, but Myrtle Beach custom builders like Odom Design can work with existing salvaged structures and materials to renovate, repair and remodel.
We've been doing business in the Myrtle Beach area since 1989. We've weathered all the major hurricanes here and proud to help families and business at the beach keep their homes and workplaces safe, secure, and comfortable.
If you are looking for extra preparation, call our sister company Cooper Electrical Services. CES specializes in commercial and residential generators that provide automatic, whole-house power in the event of an outage. Keep your HVAC, lights, appliances and everything else in your home on immediately and without the noise and extension cords that come with portable generators.
Maybe you've heard it before, but the skilled trades like electrical, HVAC, and construction are struggling to find workers. It's said that for every 4 skilled workers retiring or leaving the industry, only 1 is entering. With competitive wages and high employability, it's a reliable career path, but trade industries struggle to recruit the next generation.
Enter the South Carolina Ride and Decide Program. Currently in its pilot program, SC Ride and Decide works to pair students and high schools with industry contractors in their region. The program lets students experience the trade during summer break, assisting in paid work activities. The Ride and Decide Program is a project of the South Carolina Association of Heating and Air Conditioning.
Senior year of high school can be a stressful time. In addition to finishing important coursework, teenagers are tasked with figuring out plans for life after high school. For some, college is the next step, but many are still unsure of what to study or pursue for a career path.
For Mark Phillips of North Myrtle Beach High School, the Ride and Decide program allowed him to work with Myrtle Beach's Cooper Mechanical Services, an unlimited license electrical and HVAC contractor. Phillips works part-time with the Cooper team in a variety of areas including business growth. For Phillips, the program provides him a well-paying part-time job and the ability to learn about specific jobs he may decide to pursue in the future.
For Cooper Mechanical Services and many businesses like them, Phillips represents the future of the skilled tradesmen and women. "Having Mark on board is a wonderful," said Glenn Cooper, founder and president of CMS. "The relationships we are building with students and high school administrators is a great thing for our community and the industry."
Another Cooper employee is also praising the new program. "Finding quality HVAC people has been a challenge," remarks Mike Ruggieri, Cooper's HVAC Clean & Service Manager. "We hope that this program will let young people see that there are good jobs in HVAC here that pay well and let you work with new challenges everyday."
The Ride and Decide program is open to any South Carolina high school junior or senior meeting the following requirements:
To participate, student must:
Myrtle Beach is a resort town. Our famed Grand Strand is lined with resorts, high rise buildings, and many other commercial spaces that cater to our region’s visitors. In order to remain open for business and to maintain a high standard of safety, all resorts must make sure that their mechanical and electrical equipment works properly and meets minimum code requirements.
For hotels and motels, the boiler room, or more generally, the mechanical room is home to the boiler, water pump, water heater, air handlers, and other HVAC and mechanical or electrical equipment. One critical component to any boiler room is having an emergency shut off to immediately disconnect all mechanical equipment. Cooper Mechanical Services provides boiler room or mechanical room shut off testing and repair for commercial customers all along the Grand Strand.
The South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation oversees the ASME code requiring boiler rooms to possess an emergency shut off switch or button. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers CSD-1 (Controls and Safety Devices) provides the guidelines for the emergency shut off:
“A manually operated remote shutdown switch or circuit breaker shall be located just outside the boiler room door and marked for easy identification. Consideration should be given to the type and location of the switch to safeguard against tampering. If the boiler room door is on the building exterior, the switch should be located just inside the door. If there is more than one door to the boiler room, there should be a switch located at each door. Activation of the emergency shutdown switch or circuit breaker shall immediately shut off the fuel or energy supply.”
The ASME code is also covered by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) code 85.
If your emergency equipment doesn’t work when you need it, it’s too late. In an emergency situation like equipment failure, you may need to turn the boiler or other mechanical equipment off in a hurry. The emergency shut off is a safety precaution and it should be checked routinely so it works if it is ever needed.
Cooper Mechanical Services has been providing top-notch mechanical and electrical service to Myrtle Beach resorts for over 30 years. Our licensed electricians know the code. Our team can inspect, test, and repair boiler room emergency shut off switches so your building is ready in the event of an emergency.
To learn more about our mechanical and electrical services and how we may be of service to your resort or hotel, please give us a call or email us through our online form.
The short answer is yes, you need an emergency stop button for a swimming pool or spa intended for guest or public use. Emergency stop buttons and switches are easily identifiable safety devices intended for use by anyone in the event of an emergency. Their installation in hotel pool and spa rooms is a National Electrical Code (NEC) standard and a best practice in swimming pool and spa areas for Myrtle Beach residential communities like HOA pools.
An emergency stop button may also be called an e-stop button or switch, or simply a "kill-switch." It's purpose is to immediately disconnect power to electrical equipment. In a hotel pool or spa room, the emergency stop cuts power to all electrical components in the pool or spa area, namely the pumps and circulation equipment.
The emergency stop button is always a bright red button that is clearly labeled and in view of the pool or spa. In an event of electric shock drowning, fire, or other emergency, the stop button will immediately disconnect power from the main supply.
The NEC requires the emergency stop buttons are installed in commercial installations (like Myrtle Beach hotels and motels) to stop recirculating pumps and jet pumps (NEC 680.41). This code is a minimum standard for safety in commercial spaces, although an emergency stop button may be installed in residential or non-commercial installations as a best practice safety measure.
Cooper Mechanical Services has been delivering first class electrical service to the Myrtle Beach area since 1989. Our master electricians possess the skills and expertise to make your commercial pool and spa room compliant with current codes and as safe as possible.
To learn more about emergency stop buttons and other electrical services, Call Cooper today.
In order to understand what HVAC professionals mean when they mention "air balance" it is important to get a very general understanding of building pressure and how your Myrtle Beach restaurant or business cycles "dirty" and "clean" air through an HVAC system's exhaust and makeup or air intake components.
Building pressure is the relationship between the amount of makeup air coming into a building through the HVAC system and the amount of air exiting a system through ventilation or exhaust. As the heading suggests, it's important to ensure that the volume of "clean" makeup air coming in to the building is higher than the volume of "dirty" exhaust air leaving the building. This creates a slight positive pressure, which is ideal.
Building pressure is especially important in Myrtle Beach restaurants where a combination of high heat and humidity outside, and large volumes of exhaust from hot kitchens can quickly create instances of negative building pressure. When negative pressure occurs, your building is "unbalanced" and you may notice a variety of negative signs and symptoms.
When the volume of makeup air coming in to your restaurant or building is less than the air leaving through exhaust and ventilation, this is negative building pressure. Common problems associated with negative building pressure include the following:
Most importantly, an unbalanced building from negative air pressure creates an environment that is uncomfortable for customers and employees.
How did my building change from positive pressure to negative pressure? The causes of unbalanced air are varied, but it signals that parts of your HVAC system is inefficient and ineffective. Common problems that create negative building pressure include problems with one or more of the following components of your HVAC system:
Finally, we're back to air balance. The solution to negative building pressure is an air balance, sometimes referred to as "test and balance." Cooper Mechanical Services uses diagnostic tools to measure building pressure and test system components to identify areas that may affect pressure. Identifying the source of the problem and replacing, cleaning, or repairing the issue restores a building to the ideal slightly positive building pressure.
If you have questions or would like to learn more about our services, get it touch. Remember: stay positive and Call Cooper!
Restaurants and commercial kitchens are a large part of Myrtle Beach's tourism and service sector. The draw of the Grand Strand's warm weather and sprawling beaches brings millions to our restaurants, hotels, and businesses. For those in the food and beverage industry, offering a quality product with exemplary service is essential, and restaurant owners and managers work hard to maintain a high level of customer and employee satisfaction. One part of achieving that goal is maintaining a safe and comfortable kitchen and dining area.
Keeping your restaurants HVAC and refrigeration systems working in peak performance usually isn't a priority until something breaks and you are forced to close for repairs, losing money and frustrating both customers and employees. The best way to keep your Myrtle Beach restaurant's HVAC and refrigeration units in top shape is to schedule regular cleaning and service with Cooper Mechanical Services.
One way to keep diners and workers happy is to make sure your restaurant is properly cooled during the hot months and heated during the cold ones. Commercial HVAC systems have their work cut out for them in South Carolina summers. Do you know if your Myrtle Beach restaurant's HVAC units are in good health? Are they clean? If you don't know the answer, you will benefit from a Clean & Service contract with Cooper Mechanical Services.
An HVAC Clean & Service includes the following:
One of the key benefits of scheduled services is knowing the state of your HVAC system and being able to identify potential issues before they occur. There is a clear cost-benefit in being able to fix small issues before they snowball into major system failures.
Ventilation is especially important in restaurants where kitchens and dining areas can become hot and humid from having a lot of people and hot kitchen equipment. In the back-of-the-house, the exhaust and makeup system removes hot, greasy, and steamy air through the hood and replaces that air with "makeup air" from outdoors. This cycling system improves air quality and keeps pressurization stable (you may have experienced exterior doors suction closed from imbalanced air).
During the ventilation portion of a restaurant Clean & Service visit, a Cooper technician will inspect exhaust and makeup air systems thoroughly to make sure they are working and will continue to work as they should.
Depending on your restaurant's needs, we can also service and repair refrigerators, freezers, walk-ins, and ice machines. Our expertise with air purifiers can also help older restaurants looking to "clean up" a lingering stale smoke odor.
Cooper Mechanical Services has nearly 30 decades of experience working with Myrtle Beach restaurants. Our HVAC and Refrigeration Clean & Service contracts are fully customizable to your needs and the frequency with which you need maintenance.
If you're interested, let's chat. We can look at your restaurant's HVAC and refrigeration systems and create a service agreement that works for you.
Effective heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning at medical and healthcare facilities isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity and requirement. In addition to creating a comfortable space for healthcare workers and their patients, efficient HVAC systems can help keep people healthy and safe.
Cooper Mechanical Services uses customizable Clean & Service agreements to help our Myrtle Beach healthcare partners deliver quality service in properly cooled, heated, and ventilated workspaces.
Not all HVAC systems are the same, nor are business needs the same. Cooper Mechanical Services works with healthcare facilities, medical offices, and hospitals of all sizes to create custom service agreements that start with biannual scheduled service, inspection and cleaning.
The scope and frequency of visits can be tailored to your needs, and we can help all clients make improvements for HVAC efficiency and cost savings.
All scheduled visits include a comprehensive inspection of the indoor and outdoor components of the HVAC system and a deep chemical cleaning. During each visit a Cooper Mechanical Services professional will do the following:
Regular cleaning and maintenance can extend the life expectancy of a healthcare facility’s HVAC system. They are also helpful in identifying problems or system failures early, before costly repairs or threatening conditions to vulnerable populations.
Because Myrtle Beach is a large summer vacation destination, medical and healthcare facilities see rises in patients during the same months that we experience our hottest, most humid temperatures.
An HVAC failure during the summer months is costly and potentially dangerous for those in hospitals. Cooper Mechanical Services technicians are happy to meet to discuss your unique situation to design a plan so you can continue to work in comfortable and safe indoor air environments.
The Cooper Mechanical Services electrical division handles electrical and power supply needs for residential and commercial customers of all sizes. To offer our Myrtle Beach customers fast, reliable, and affordable service, we invest in our team and equipment. Our certified, licensed, and bonded electricians use company-owned heavy machinery to ensure jobs are done right and in a timely manner.
Recently on the blog we featured our bucket truck, which gives our team an aerial platform for lighting and electrical jobs in high places. Another piece of specialty equipment we use frequently for electrical jobs is a trencher, a piece of machinery that efficiently digs trenches for electrical line or piping.
Trenchers come in a variety of types and sizes, from walk-behind portable models for landscapers to large wheel models for cutting through hard rock. The Cooper team uses a trencher for a single purpose: cutting deep and narrow trenches for burying electrical and telecommunications line.
Many areas have underground cabling, which can have higher up-front costs but offer many benefits. Buried lines have longer life spans, decreased operational costs, and offer better protection against weather and other conditions that damage lines.
For residential and most light commercial operations, buried electrical lines should be at least 24 inches underground. A trencher lets the Cooper team quickly get a trench for lines that meets the required depth for code.
Digging a trench without specialized machinery can be time-consuming and expensive. By investing in a trencher, the Cooper team can get right to work. There is no sub-contracting or time and costs spent acquiring one from a rental company.
Whether you are bringing power to new construction or expanding power to an existing structure, Cooper Mechanical Services is ready to help you with all aspects of electrical design, installation, inspection, readiness, and troubleshooting.