If you’re operating an air conditioning unit on a commercial premise, it’s highly likely that you will need to have a TM44 inspection at some point during the next few years. If this is the first time you’re hearing about the requirement, or you’re just looking for more information on why you need to have your air conditioning unit inspected, we’re here to help. Here’s our guide on what to expect, your legal obligation and some tips to make the most out of your inspection.
TM44 Inspections: An overview
A TM44 Inspection, also known as a TM44 Survey, is a comprehensive look into your building’s air conditioning unit and how efficiently they operate. The purpose of the inspection is to ensure that all commercial buildings are taking the necessary steps to make their properties as energy efficient as possible to reduce their carbon footprints.
An accredited assessor will begin with a visual inspection of your air conditioning unit to look for any obvious physical damage such as dents or cracks. The unit will be turned on and off to check for a smooth operation, and the control panel and any accessory pieces will be tested.
Once your unit has been trialed and your assessor can see how well the unit is functioning, they will then question how you operate the system, how frequently the air conditioning unit is used and how often it undergoes maintenance.
Once the inspection is complete, the assessor will generate a report on their findings which will include details about how efficient the unit is, any faults that need to be repaired as well as steps you can take to reduce your reliance on the unit and tips on how to operate the unit to make it more energy efficient.
Legal requirements and penalties
TM44 Inspections have been a legal requirement in the UK since 2011, as implemented by the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD). TM44 Inspections are only applicable to air conditioning units with a cooling output of over 12kw. Your inspections must take place within 5 years of the previous inspection. Once your inspection has been completed, the results must be lodged with the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government Energy Performance of Buildings Register for a certification to be generated.
Failure to comply and have your units inspected according to the legislated schedule will result in a £300 fine. Fines can be issued every 7 days until the unit has been properly inspected and certified.
Make your TM44 inspection beneficial for your business
It can be easy to fall into the habit of thinking of your TM44 inspection as a tick box exercise that can be forgotten about once you’ve received your certification. However, if the UK is to reach our energy savings goal of reducing the 1990 level of emissions by 68% in 2032 then we must all do our part to make our homes and our businesses greener. Your TM44 inspection unlocks a whole host of energy efficiency and operational benefits that you can use to make your business more profitable:
- Reduced electricity use: A more efficient unit will be more effective when used. This means that you’ll be using less electricity to power the air conditioning which will be reflected in the savings made on your energy bill.
- Reduced maintenance costs: An inefficient or faulty unit is more likely to be overused as you try to keep your office or workplace cool. This can lead to overheating or quicker wear and tear that will damage the unit. By learning how to use your unit more efficiently and ensuring it is in good working condition, you’ll avoid having to pay for maintenance or repair work which can save you hundreds of pounds.
- Green incentives: The financial benefits of being a green business are growing. From an increased buy-in from consumers, to a higher likelihood of winning large corporate or Government tenders, you can increase your customer base by showing you’re taking steps to reduce your energy consumption.
Using your TM44 inspection to kickstart your steps to a more energy-efficient company will also unlock financial incentives and grants that are available to businesses taking steps to become greener.