+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    santa ana
    Posts
    2

    Talking cooling for a computer room

    In our offices we have a large closet sized room that needs more efficient cooling because it is holding our server system. What would be the most cost efficient way of cooling this room? hooking up with the room to the present AC system of the building? or some kind of cooling mechanism just for the room. Any ideas would be super helpful!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    693

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    I see this situation week in and week out and I see two approaches. One is just a simple transfer type exhaust fan connected to a cooling thermostat mounted in the room. The heat is just exhausted into a ceiling plenum which acts as a return for the building heating and cooling system.

    The other type of system is a dedicated AC unit mounted above the ceiling for the closet.

    I think it would really depend on how much heat producing equipment is in the closet. And, what type of heating and cooling system you have.

    I only know about the electrical requirements shown on plans though. I have no idea how the heat gain is calculated for any given amount of equipment.

    If you lease and do not own you may really want to check your lease agreement if that is applicable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,259

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    As NEC said an exhaust fan usually does the trick. Don't forget a louver for air intake.
    Liebert is a company that make stand alone units for cooling electronic equipment

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,622

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    Generally a dedicated system is best. You generally want to keep the room cooler than the rest of the work space. The temperature in side the server is several degrees higher than the ambient temperature so the lower the ambient temperature the better. This also allows for better air filtration in the server room.
    Jack

    You should also have the server on a UPS which is also a heat producer.
    Last edited by JLMCDANIEL; 05-15-2009 at 10:11 PM.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
    Posts
    4,045

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    Really depends on the equipment and the space that exists.
    Typically you can achieve " cooling " with an fan(s) configuration as suggested by NEC.
    The main thing is clearance for adequate air flow around the equipment for the fan to draw.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    santa ana
    Posts
    2

    Thumbs up Re: cooling for a computer room

    thank you all for your input, heres a tad more info, im still a bit torn... the space is about 25-20 sq ft.and the unit takes about 1/3 of the space. Its quite a small space.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,622

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    I'm going to assume that this being a server that is the life blood of your business. I would install a portable AC unit they range in cost from about $200 to $1000. A fairly cheap price to keep you business from shutting down. They just plug in and you have to run a 4" flex pipe to the out side for heat exhaust.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,418

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    I work for a small computer consulting firm that supports small businesses. In my experience, simply having an exhaust fan is inadequate unless it moves a lot of air. My rule of thumb is roughly one cubic foot per minute per watt of power used. You want to keep the room temperature below 75*F (cooler is better). At about 85*F, you'll start experiencing server crashes and other failures. On the other hand, you don't want to go TOO cold, because that can introduce humidity and condensation problems (mid- to low 60s is the lowest).

    You don't want to tie into the building's A/C system, because in the winter it's not A/C, it's heat. You don't want to be pumping heat into your server room. If your building's HVAC system shuts off at night, the ambient temperature in the office may rise high enough to prevent proper cooling of the server closet, even if you have otherwise adequate airflow.

    I recommend a dedicated air conditioner for your server room. Look for something called a ductless split system -- there is a compressor unit that's set outside the building and refrigerant lines are routed into the server room, where there is a wall-mounted unit containing both a fan and the evaporator coils. This interior unit looks kind of like the inside half of a window air conditioner. Here's one example:

    http://www.mrslim.com/Products/Categ...tCategoryID=24

    I don't know what the cost of these systems is, and installation is not a DIY project. If you have only one server or the space is small, then go ahead and try just an exhaust fan. Make sure it moves plenty of air. For energy efficiency, don't exhaust it to the outside. You probably don't want it exhausting directly into your office, because that would be too noisy.
    Last edited by Fencepost; 05-19-2009 at 10:56 AM.
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,418

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    One of my customers had a 2' x 4' closet with a half dozen servers in it. It was a temporary location in an overcrowded office. We had a 500 CFM exhaust fan directed into the plenum and it kept the room down to 75 degrees. There was a 3/4" gap at the bottom of the door.

    They now have in their new location a server room that's 12' x 18' and has a dedicated A/C unit.
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
    Posts
    4,045

    Default Re: cooling for a computer room

    Quote Originally Posted by Fencepost View Post
    I work for a small computer consulting firm that supports small businesses. In my experience, simply having an exhaust fan is inadequate unless it moves a lot of air. My rule of thumb is roughly one cubic foot per minute per watt of power used. You want to keep the room temperature below 75*F (cooler is better). At about 85*F, you'll start experiencing server crashes and other failures. On the other hand, you don't want to go TOO cold, because that can introduce humidity and condensation problems (mid- to low 60s is the lowest).

    You don't want to tie into the building's A/C system, because in the winter it's not A/C, it's heat. You don't want to be pumping heat into your server room. If your building's HVAC system shuts off at night, the ambient temperature in the office may rise high enough to prevent proper cooling of the server closet, even if you have otherwise adequate airflow.

    I recommend a dedicated air conditioner for your server room. Look for something called a ductless split system -- there is a compressor unit that's set outside the building and refrigerant lines are routed into the server room, where there is a wall-mounted unit containing both a fan and the evaporator coils. This interior unit looks kind of like the inside half of a window air conditioner. Here's one example:

    http://www.mrslim.com/Products/Categ...tCategoryID=24

    I don't know what the cost of these systems is, and installation is not a DIY project. If you have only one server or the space is small, then go ahead and try just an exhaust fan. Make sure it moves plenty of air. For energy efficiency, don't exhaust it to the outside. You probably don't want it exhausting directly into your office, because that would be too noisy.
    Ya know ..... a company I do work in has several thousand LAN/WAN setups in as may offices.
    Each office has a cabinet approx. 2 feet wide by 4 feet deep by 5 feet high ( about 20 sq ft or 40 cubic ft. ) .....which contains a real server , UPS , phone system , router, hub and other special equipment.

    The cabinets have front and rear doors that remain closed ... there is an opening on the bottom roughly 1 foot by 2 feet covered by a filter. On top of the cabinet there are three 4 inch exhaust fans drawing the heat out the cabinet. There is no dedicated A/C system employed or needed for cooling. This system works well by simple air circulation through the cabinet and haven't seen a crash because of this.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •