How to heat an industrial warehouse and ensure the right comfort?
4 effective and sustainable solutions for heating a warehouse during the winter.
Heating an industrial warehouse is a top priority for every entrepreneur who must ensure a healthy and comfortable working environment for their employees, even during the coldest months of the year.
Efficient and adequate heating of the warehouse is crucial not only to ensure the physical and mental well-being of workers but also for the proper functioning of machinery and, consequently, the entire production process.
According to current regulations, in fact, to ensure that the work activities of personnel within the workspaces are carried out in the best possible way, it should be possible to maintain an indicative temperature ranging from 18 to 24 degrees, without temperature fluctuations.
The temperature should be appropriate for the type of task performed in that specific work area and commensurate with the energy expenditure of the worker: for office work, which is more stationary and sedentary, the ideal temperature ranges from 21 to 23 degrees, while in a production area where physical work of medium intensity is performed, the temperature range can be lowered to 18 – 21 degrees..
It is important to emphasize that each situation should be carefully evaluated, as different temperature requirements may be needed for various tasks or production activities within the warehouse.
In the market, there are numerous heating solutions to choose from, including radiant heating, electric or gas heating, air heating, and even biomass or geothermal systems.
To choose the system that best suits your needs, it is important to consider some factors, and it’s necessary to highlight that, while general guidelines can be provided, each case must be studied individually.
While the company’s top priority is undoubtedly to protect the health of its employees and safeguard the proper functioning of machinery, it is important to note that heating a warehouse must also be economically sustainable for the entrepreneur.
Uniformly heating a medium to large industrial environment is therefore not a simple task; before choosing the ideal heating solution, it is important to consider some fundamental and structural aspects of the spaces to be heated.
In this article, we will delve into the most important aspects in choosing the correct system to use and explore the best solutions available in the market for economically heating an industrial warehouse.
Factors to consider for heating a warehouse
Industrial warehouses, storage facilities, railway workshops, and hangars are characterized by their large heights and volumes, often with poor thermal insulation. These factors make it more challenging to uniformly heat the different work areas.
Their structural characteristics create environments that are not only very tall but also open, where heat doesn’t encounter barriers, making it easy for warmth to dissipate within these structures.
Another element to consider is the fact that, as spaces where goods, materials, and people must move, doors and entrances tend to remain open during working hours. Consequently, in addition to the challenge posed by the size of the spaces, there is also heat loss due to the continuous opening of the entrances. This can be particularly problematic during winter when cold air from outside can easily enter, potentially lowering the comfort temperature inside.
6 key factors to consider for heating an industrial warehouse
Before selecting the best heating system for your warehouse, it’s important to consider the following key points:
- Building volume and height: As mentioned, the height of the space plays a significant role in determining the choice of heating systems. The volume and height of the building also help determine the optimal installation height for the heating system.
- Building insulation and openings: The level of insulation in the building and the presence of sealed openings and windows are crucial factors. Well-insulated buildings with minimal openings will have lower heat loss and result in greater cost savings. Conversely, poorly insulated buildings with many openings are likely to experience greater heat loss and higher operating costs.
- Areas to heat and machinery heat sources: Determine whether you need to heat the entire warehouse or specific zones within it. It’s essential to consider any heat generated by machinery operating inside the building, as this can reduce the required heating capacity.
- Fuel source: Knowing the type of fuel or energy source available for the heating system is fundamental in choosing the best solution.
- Air exchange: Understanding the amount of air exchange in the environment to be heated is crucial for creating a comfortable space without compromising the health of workers.
- Comfort temperature: Lastly, but not least, is the ideal internal comfort temperature. Different work environments require different temperatures, depending on the type of tasks performed within them.
Now, let’s explore together the most effective solutions for winter heating in medium to large industrial spaces.
What heating solutions does the market offer for industrial warehouses?
The market offers various heating solutions for industrial warehouses, each with its specific characteristics and advantages. Below, I’ll list some common solutions:
- Radiant heating systems (gas or electric): These systems emit heat through radiators or radiant panels mounted on the ceiling or walls. Radiant heating provides uniform warmth and can be an energy-efficient choice.
- Hot air generators: These devices heat the air and distribute it in the environment through fans. They are often used in industrial warehouses to heat large volumes of air. They can operate on gas, electricity, or other energy sources.
- Underfloor heating: This system involves the installation of heating cables or tubes beneath the floor. It uniformly heats the entire area and is particularly effective in well-insulated warehouses. It’s a comfortable choice but requires careful planning during construction or renovation.
- Heat pumps: Heat pumps use thermal energy from the surrounding air or ground to heat the indoor environment. They are considered efficient solutions for heating large areas and can also be used for cooling during the warmer months. On the downside, they may not be entirely cost-effective as they consume significant amounts of electricity for operation.
In addition to these solutions, there are other options such as biomass heating systems and geothermal heating systems. The choice will depend on the specific needs of your warehouse, its structure, desired energy efficiency, and available resources.
How to heat a warehouse: 4 Carlieuklima solutions for achieving the right thermal comfort
The market offers various solutions for heating industrial warehouses; in this article, we present four solutions that utilize the principle of radiation, ideal for even heat distribution and greater cost savings.
How do infrared heating systems work?
In radiant heating systemswhere heat is dispersed into the environment using the natural principle of radiation, emitting surfaces are installed on the ceiling. This allows them to directly and without dispersion affect the people working in the spaces below, providing them with an immediate feeling of warmth and comfort..
If you want to delve deeper into the topic of radiation and discover its main advantages, learn more in our blog article.
Radiation: What is it and how does it work
4 cost-effective radiant heating systems for heating industrial warehouses:
- Gas radiant strips
- Infrared diffusers or lamps
- Radiant heat strips
- Radiant tube modules
These systems, primarily composed of modular radiant elements, are the ideal solution for heating work environments. They enable zone heating , allowing you to heat only specific operational areas where workers are present, preventing heat dispersion elsewhere, and consequently optimizing energy consumption..
Radiant strips for heating industrial warehouses
Radiant strips are a ceiling heating system that utilizes the principle of radiation to uniformly heat medium to large-sized spaces.
They are ideal for industrial warehouses with a height exceeding 5 meters and can even heat facilities with a height exceeding 10 meters.
Among the primary advantages of radiant strips are:
- Sustainability: Low NOx emissions, certified for greater environmental protection.
- Cost Savings: Low electrical power consumption and proper management allow for cost containment.
- Quiet operation: They do not produce noise in work environments, a plus for maintaining worker concentration during their activities.
- Versatility: They easily adapt to various settings, not only for heating industrial warehouses but also warehouses, railway workshops, and hangars.
- Zone heating: As mentioned earlier, they can be positioned in specific areas for localized heating.
- Comfort: Comfortable temperatures without thermal gradients. Thanks to the principle of radiation, the phenomenon of warm air stratification upward is avoided.
- No obstruction: The absence of heating elements on the floor and walls allows for the full utilization of the operational surface area of the facility.
- Healthiness: Radiant strips do not generate air movement within workspaces; the environments are healthy and clean, ensuring greater worker health protection.
Infrared diffusers for heating warehouses
Radiant diffusers consist of individual high-efficiency incandescent plates.
Lightweight, compact, quiet, and with a small footprint, they are the ideal solution for heating medium to large-sized facilities with a height exceeding 5 meters.
Thanks to the ability to adjust their radiant beam, they are ideal for heating specific areas of industrial warehouses, evenly distributing heat with the possibility of temperature control zone by zone.
Among the primary advantages of radiant diffusers, in addition to those listed above, are:
- Cost savings: Thanks to the low electrical power required for their operation, it is possible to control the management costs of the system.
- Promptness: They ignite and reach operating temperature quickly, ensuring that workspaces are immediately comfortable and heated.
- Healthiness: Radiant diffusers do not cause any movement of dust and air, creating healthy and clean spaces.
- Reliability: Thanks to the use of high-quality materials in their production, maintenance of these systems is limited to the checks required by legal regulations.
Radiant heat strips for heating high-fire-risk warehouses
Radiant heat ceiling panels are a heating system composed of radiant panels that operate with hot water, superheated water, or steam.
They are ideal for uniformly heating work environments with a height of less than 4/5 meters, without causing stratification, annoying air movement, or dust, thereby optimizing consumption and associated operating costs.
Radiant panels are particularly suitable for spaces where processes and material concentrations can lead to the formation of gases, vapors, and/or dust, which can result in fires and/or explosions.
Among the other strengths of radiant heat strips are:
- Silence: The system generates no noise, promoting better concentration among personnel during working hours.
- Air conditioning: With proper sizing, radiant heat strips can also be used for cooling spaces during the summer months, providing a 2-in-1 system.
- Durability: The materials used for the system’s components ensure long-term reliability.
- Reliability: Thanks to careful design that allows for safe installation, maintenance is virtually nonexistent.
Radiant tube modules for heating medium to large-sized warehouses
Radiant tubes are high-efficiency standalone heaters that operate through radiation, designed with the latest technologies to ensure maximum performance with minimal consumption.
They are ideal for heating medium to large-sized industrial warehouses with a height ranging from 5 meters up to even exceeding 10 meters. They enable uniform heating, even in specific areas of the building, thanks to the ability to direct the radiant beam towards specific areas.
Among the primary advantages of radiant tubes are:
- Promptness: As with radiant diffusers, ignition and system startup occur quickly in this case as well.
- Healthiness: The heating system does not create any air movement or dust, ensuring a healthy and clean work environment.
- Silence: Radiant tubes do not introduce additional noise into an industrial environment.
- Comfort: Comfortable temperatures without thermal gradients.
- No obstruction: Radiant tubes are suspended from the ceiling and, therefore, do not occupy space that could be used for other activities.
These are some of the most efficient heating systems available in the market, suitable for warehouses of small, medium, or large sizes.
We would like to emphasize that these are only general guidelines, and each case and building should be analyzed specifically on its own.
Are you looking for the ideal solution to heat your industrial warehouse?
Take a look at our products or contact us to find the solution that best suits your needs.