Fridgehub News

Integral, the leading independently owned Mechanical, Electrical and Fabric maintenance services provider,  have strengthened  their continued expansion into the Industrial refrigeration and HVAC sectors across the UK with the a number of key appointments.

In the South West the team headed by Regional Service Manager Dave McDonald has been enhanced by the appointment of Lee Kinsey – ex IIice, as Regional Supervisor together with Kane Smout – ex J & E Halls engineer in the North of the region. Dave McDonald said, “This is excellent news for the South West team, the speed of development in the region has been surprising, therefore strengthening our existing management and engineering capability - which now ranges from Devon and Cornwall up into the Midlands is essential to ensure the continued success of the region.”  

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UK:  Following continuing business efficiency improvements and economies of scale due to growth, Toshiba Air Conditioning has announced significant reductions in UK equipment prices.

The reductions of up to 16per cent come into effect from 1 June, and are part of Toshiba’s strategic goal of doubling air conditioning sales by 2020. The new pricing applies to some of Toshiba’s most popular ranges of splits and VRF air conditioning equipment.

David Dunn, director and general manager of Toshiba Air Conditioning, said: “We have been working hard for some time to ensure the business is as productive and efficient as possible. I believe we are among the best in class anywhere. This, coupled with increasing equipment volumes sold into the UK, has allowed us to pass on these attractive savings – which in turn will enable customers to be more competitive and win additional work, and so grow their own businesses.”

He added: “This is a virtuous circle for all concerned, and will help us continue to build the momentum towards our own long-term growth objectives.”

The highlights of the new pricing structure include:

  • Toshiba RAS systems reduced by up to 16%;
  • Digital Inverter split systems reduced by up to 12%;
  • Three-phase Super Digital inverter outdoor units reduced by as much as 14%.

Even the company’s multi-award winning VRF systems benefit under the new approach, while associated products – such as some air-to-air heat exchangers – receive a 9per cent reduction.

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The company announced its 2020 growth strategy last year, and is supporting the initiative with the introduction of new products, increased stocking levels, new appointments, a major expansion in production capacity, enhancement of warranty terms for trained contractors and a global push on training.

Toshiba is dramatically increasing stocking capacity at its Plymouth facility with a further 44,000sq ft of racking space, ensuring immediate product availability across its most popular ranges.

David Dunn said: “There is a saying that ‘the future belongs to those who plan for it.’  I would add – ‘and those who work diligently and unswervingly towards their goals’. We are accelerating our activities on several fronts, to expand our range, further improve logistics, and build on our already highly regarded service to customers.

He added: “A part of this, the recent acquisition of CIAT, and it’s positioning alongside the Toshiba offering, is highly significant. It means we now offer a complete range of solutions for all building types, and all applications.

“It offers contractors access to a comprehensive range of technology from a single source, streamlining their own supply channels and reducing business costs. We believe that on top of our expanded portfolio and award-winning products, the latest price reductions provide a compelling offer.”

UK: Bristol based Space Engineering has launched a new CO2-based integrated refrigeration system that is said to offer impressive energy and financial savings for convenience stores.

Introducing the ECO2 BIS; an integrated refrigeration system built for performance, simplicity, and security.

The ECO2 Booster Integrated Solution (BIS) (pat. pend.) is Space Engineering Services’ newest, space-saving, 3-in-1 natural refrigeration system.

The ECO2 BIS is a high-performing, super-efficient, compact CO2 refrigeration system, and that’s just the beginning.

What makes it really remarkable is its advanced technology which recovers waste heat, turning it into space heating and using the booster technology it provides space cooling at the most efficient conditions utilising parallel compressor technology. This means there’s no need for separate HVAC heat pumps, meaning you can maximise retail space. This system is the first of its kind, and its capabilities are already making waves with some of the UK’s biggest supermarket chains.

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The unique configuration of the system provides impressive energy and financial savings. Energy usage in stores powered by the ECO2 BIS is reduced by as much as 30%* thanks to the system’s heat recovery capabilities and the efficiency-boosting thermodynamic properties of CO2. This means that the ECO2 BIS offers significant contributions towards meeting sustainability and energy reduction targets too.

Operating on the single refrigerant R744, the dual-temperature system is based on our tried and tested ECO2 Mini Internal system, which has been the system of choice for convenience retailers across the UK. The ECO2 BIS goes one step further with its integrated heating and cooling capabilities, whilst still letting you stay in control with refrigeration priority settings.

We’ve taken some of the best features of the ECO2 Mini Internal, and made them even better in the ECO2 BIS. Like its compact footprint, making it ideal for smaller and convenience retail formats where space is a premium. And it’s low global warming potential of just 1.

Tony Mills, Space Engineering Services’ Plant Manufacturing Director, said: “We are really excited about the ECO2 BIS development and see it as a major advancement in the convenience market. The use of direct CO2 space heating is a first for this type of unit, and coupled with high efficient space cooling and refrigeration cooling in one package, it makes the ECO2 BIS an attractive proposition for any customer looking for an efficient and natural solution.”

For more information about the ECO2 BIS, and to see how it could work for your business, CLICK HERE

UK:  Climate Center, one of the UK’s leading suppliers of air conditioning and refrigeration equipment, is now stocking the industry’s leading alternative to R410A in every branch.

Climate Center has invested heavily to respond effectively to the changes to the F-Gas regulations by ensuring the lower GWP R32 refrigerant is readily available for customers in all of its 45 branches nationwide.

The changes to the F-Gas Regulations came into force on 1 January 2015 with the aim of encouraging users to use refrigerants with a lower global warming potential (GWP). From 2025 any gas with a GWP higher than 750 will be banned in new split air conditioning systems.

With these measures in place, installers are increasingly seeking an alternative to R410A equipment. Climate Center’s investment also coincides with manufacturers Daikin and Toshiba launching their new R32 air conditioning ranges.

R32 is a single component, zero ODP gas with a GWP of 675, significantly less than R410A, which has a GWP of 2088. In addition the use of R32 will lead to a reduction of refrigerant charge of up to 30%. This means that heat exchangers and components can be made smaller resulting in more compact systems.

At present gauges, manifolds, leak detectors and recovery equipment suitable for R32 have been available however no other wholesalers have been able to offer R32 refrigerant off the shelf.

Robert Franklin, National Development Director at Climate Center, said: “Climate Center is committed to distributing lower GWP refrigerants, however new legislation has inevitably conjured up concern across the industry in terms of how it will affect businesses. We have been working extensively to ensure that it has minimal impact on our customers by making sure they are up to date with F-Gas regulations and have the resources to comply. Ensuring that the leading alternative to R410A is readily available, is a fundamental part of this.”

For more information on Climate Center’s R32 systems go to

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UK: Integral UK, the leading independently owned Mechanical, Electrical and Fabric property maintenance provider have continued their expansion into the Industrial refrigeration and HVAC sectors with the appointment of Tim Dalton as Service Manager, based at their Cardiff office.

Tim is a well known and respected figure bringing with him a wealth of experience with over 24 years in the refrigeration industry.  He has worked in a variety of different roles within the Industrial refrigeration and HVAC sector, most recently at J & E Hall.  Tim is a family man with two children and enjoys martial arts, already having achieved first Dan in Tang Soo Do.   

Refrigeration Wholesale is adding value to your supply chain with DaikinMartin Mitchell Integral's National Industrial Refrigeration Service Director said "We are really excited with the speed and expansion of our Industrial Refrigeration capability into Wales. This supports Integral’s business ethos of a local presence backed up with a national infrastructure.  The new appointment of our Service Manager, Tim Dalton, will be a major factor in delivering excellent service throughout Wales and the Southwest.

Integral UK continue their expansion into the Industrial refrigeration and HVAC sectors with the appointment of Tim Dalton as Service Manager, based at their Cardiff office.

Tim Dalton said “I am looking forward to being part of the Integral refrigeration industrial team; my main objective is to further develop our industrial refrigeration and specialised industrial HVAC customer portfolio by delivering engineering excellence in all that we do.”

Integral UK Ltd is an independently owned company providing both Planned Preventative and Reactive Maintenance utilising over 100 dedicated, qualified refrigeration engineers. 

AREA has published a guide on equipment for low GWP flammable refrigerants. This guide gives service technicians a tool to understand the equipment that should be used to service refrigeration plants containing flammable low GWP refrigerants in category A2L (lower flammability) or A3 (higher flammability).

Alternative refrigerants to HFCs will be increasingly used as a result of the new EU F-gas Regulation and the probable future international phase-down of High Global Warming Potential Substances. Since many of these alternative refrigerants are flammable, it is very important to ensure that service technicians use the right equipment to handle them safely.

AREA, the refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump contractors association, has therefore decided to issue a guide to provide service technicians with a tool for installation, maintenance and repair of future equipment containing flammable low GWP refrigerants. This guide complements the AREA Guidance on minimum requirements for contractors’ training & certification, which deals with competence of personnel.

The guide is the result of work undertaken by the AREA Task Force Low GWP Refrigerants. Marco Buoni, its Chairman and Vice-President of AREA, said: “Low GWP refrigerants will already be more widely used from this summer. It is part of AREA’s role to advise and assist service technicians both in Europe and worldwide so that they can handle these new systems safely.”


UK:  Toshiba Air Conditioning, which introduced the industry’s first seven year warranty, is breaking new ground again with the introduction of a warranty scheme based on installer skills and competence.

David Dunn, director and general manager of Toshiba Air ConditioningDavid Dunn, director and general manager, says: “The industry’s approach to warranty cover has traditionally been based on how much a customer spends with the manufacturer. This is unhelpful and illogical, as in practical terms what matters for warranty purposes is the technical proficiency of the installer, and how competent they are in carrying out installation, commissioning and on-going servicing of the equipment.

“The new Toshiba scheme recognises this, and gives proper weight to the level of technical training and competence of installers, translating this into a commensurate level of warranty cover.”

Under the new scheme, to achieve the highest level of cover – a seven year enhanced warranty, installers must be F-Gas registered, have successfully completed three relevant Toshiba training courses, and file commissioning and maintenance reports for a project online.

The next level down, standard seven year cover, requires installers to be F-Gas registered and have completed three relevant Toshiba training courses. F-Gas registered contractors who have not undertaken three Toshiba training courses will receive standard five year warranty cover.

Toshiba Air Conditioning Training CentreThe three warranty bands relate to three tiers of Toshiba installer: T7 Enhanced Warranty Partners, T7 Approved Warranty Partners, and T5 Registered Installers. Each is able to offer customers the relevant level of warranty cover for equipment installed by them.

David Dunn says: “Linking warranties to competence is a completely sensible approach. Our aim is to incentivise installers to raise their game by taking advantage of Toshiba’s training programme to improve their knowledge and skills.”

Courses are available in all aspects of installing, commissioning and servicing equipment, including system design. The company is currently extending its network of training centres into the South West to complete nationwide coverage.

David Dunn added: “Improving skill levels is a key strategic issue for the industry. As a leading manufacturer we are committed to playing our part to help achieve this. It is obviously in our interests as a manufacturer to raise the level of technical proficiency among contractors, but also opens up new opportunities for installers while delivering major benefits to end users. The new Toshiba scheme will hopefully stimulate progress in this area and raise the bar for the industry as a whole, to the benefit of all.”

GERMANY:  Following an extensive qualification program, compressor specialist BITZER has announced approval of the R1234yf and R1234ze(E) HFO refrigerants for its CSH and CSW screw compressors. The two alternatives to R134a have a global warming potential (GWP) of under ten, while the GWP of R134a is around 1,400. With a GWP of about 600 each, the HFO/HFC blends R513A and R450A are also approved for the CSH and CSW series. Unlike the pure HFO refrigerants, they’re nonflammable.

The requirements stipulated by the EU’s F-gas Regulation no. 517/2014 also represent a huge challenge for manufacturers of refrigeration compressors. In order to meet the phase-down objectives, alternative refrigerants such as hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs) will have to be used in the future. The volumetric refrigerating capacity and pressure levels of R1234yf are comparable with those of R134a, while the capacity figures and pressure levels of R1234ze(E) are around 20 to 25% lower. BITZER subjected the R1234yf and R1234ze(E) refrigerants in this group to intensive testing, and the compressors performed well with both in all of the tests and laboratory experiments. The tested compressors achieved nearly identical isentropic efficiency values with R1234yf and R1234ze(E) as with R134a. Due to differences in the thermodynamic properties, the COP measurement results are in some cases slightly lower.

BITZER subjected the R1234yf and R1234ze(E) refrigerants to intensive testing, and the compressors performed well with both in all of the tests and laboratory experiments (CSW shown here)Both of the HFOs are suitable for air conditioning and medium temperature applications in particular, as well as for heat pumps. There’s often a degree of uncertainty regarding flammability. In safety data sheets, R1234ze(E) is listed as nonflammable, though this only applies to transport and storage. When used as a refrigerant, a higher reference temperature of 60°C is applied in flammability tests. At this temperature, R1234ze(E) is flammable and therefore assigned to the A2L safety group, just like R1234yf. For this reason, a risk assessment in accordance with the ATEX Directive is required for systems with both refrigerants – with potential consequences in the system design. BITZER compressors for HFO refrigerant fulfill the relevant requirements, making additional evaluation unnecessary.

HFO/HFC blends such as R513A and R450A, on the other hand, are nonflammable and therefore classified in the A1 safety group. Using them requires nothing more than a conventional risk assessment in accordance with the Machinery Directive. However, the substitutes R513A and R450A have a GWP of around 600.

After evaluating all of the results, BITZER has announced approval of the HFO refrigerants R1234yf and R1234ze(E) and the HFO/HFC blends for CSH and CSW compact screw compressors. These tried-and-tested products can be operated with the standard ester oil charge (Y-model) with HFO refrigerants in the documented applications.

Detailed technical descriptions with performance data and application limits can be found in the SP-171-3 (CSH) and SP-172-6 (CSW) documentation. The corresponding data will be provided in the BITZER software in due time.

CSH and CSW: high energy efficiency

The universal CSH and CSW compact screw compressors can also be used with the economizer circuit to further increase refrigerating capacity and efficiency. They’re fitted with dual capacity control and can be adjusted infinitely or according to scale. The level of energy efficiency is a benchmark in this compressor technology in both full-load and part-load operation.

CSH compressors demonstrate their strength particularly in air cooled liquid chillers for comfort air conditioning and in heat pumps. The CSW series is suitable for use in liquid chillers operated at low condensing temperatures. The compressors are used in systems with water cooled condensers, process cooling and systems with air cooled condensers operating under moderate climatic conditions.

UK:  From March 7th, FG Eurofred will trade under its new name, “FUJITSU GENERAL AIR CONDITIONING (UK) LIMITED”

Says Ian Carroll, Sales and Marketing Director : “The new name gives us the opportunity to underline what’s important to our customers. Brand recognition backed by renowned FUJITSU quality.

This decision removes any confusion about our name and reaffirms our commitment to the UK as it has become clear that not having the highly recognisable name ‘FUJITSU’ in our company title has not made the most of an extremely strong world-wide brand.

“We have so much to shout about this year which happens to coincide with the 30th anniversary of FUJITSU GENERAL LIMITED starting its air conditioning business in the UK.”

Germany. The compressor specialist BITZER has made operating its BITZER Electronics Service Tool (BEST) even easier: users can now watch a video explaining how to use the tool on the BITZER website and on the video platform YouTube. Refrigeration and service engineers can quickly and easily operate all BITZER IQ products from their PC using the BEST software.

In the almost five-minute-long video, an English-speaking narrator explains the tool and its most important functions. The software provides users with a complete overview of the operating status, troubleshooting and maintenance of BITZER products. BEST makes service engineers’ work much easier: for example, they can use it to quickly and safely set device parameters, analyse errors or download and save data logs.

The software supports VARISPEED reciprocating compressors, CSV compact screw compressors, the ECOSTAR condensing units LHV5E and LHV7E, as well as the protection, monitoring and control devices SE-i1 and CM-RC-01.

The BITZER Group is the world’s largest independent manufacturer of refrigeration compressors with sales companies and production sites for reciprocating, screw, and scroll compressors as well as pressure vessels all over the globe. In 2014, 3,400 employees generated sales of €657 million.