Building Services Engineering, Management and Installation

Zephyr Engineering have become a ‘go to’ contractor for reactive repairs and small works by our client base and we would welcome the opportunity to help new clients in this way.

We take a positive attitude to small works, repairs and projects that others may shy away from and have built a solid reputation for our ‘can do’ approach.

The following are just example case studies of this style of work that we have recently completed.

We were called in on a Thursday morning by one of our prestigious London University clients because it had just rained and he had an old cast iron rainwater pipe leaking all over his plantroom floor. In the first photo, you can see the existing pipe leaking onto the floor and a branch off of the stack with a badly corroded bend which also leaked when it rained. When we arrived, we quickly surveyed the stack and identified that the branch was actually redundant and had been cut off and left with an open end just outside of the plantroom. The stack itself served a rainwater outlet on the roof, five storeys above.

On the following day, our plumbers arrived fully armed with their tools and materials. We plugged the rainwater outlet on the roof and removed the old cast iron pipework in the plantroom. We then installed fusion welded Terrain Fuze HDPE drainage pipework in its place, connecting to the old cast iron with purpose made step couplings. The second photograph shows our finished installation – with a dry plantroom floor.

This reactive repair looks like the simplest of jobs!

We were called in because our client had a leaking bend on an old cast iron rainwater pipe – simple enough. However, this was only the beginning of the story! First, we had to erect a purpose built scaffold to give us safe access over other plantroom equipment. We then had to break the fire stopping out so that we could then get access to the hidden coupling on the other end of the bend. However, little did we know that the coupling had been cast into the concrete slab. So now we had to break the concrete out around the pipe. This duly completed, we could not gain enough access to get the old coupling out. So, upstairs we went and cut a new access hole in the inaccessible plasterboard riser cupboard where the pipe led to. Finally, we were able to cut the old pipe either side of the bend and install new Ensign cast iron pipework using purpose made step couplings to join onto the old cast iron pipe.

Of course, the work did not end there. Next we had to fire stop the hole we had made around the pipe as it went through the slab. Then we had to install a permanent access panel in the riser cupboard where we had cut a hole and we ended up redecorating around the new access panel so it looked like we had never been there. Finally, the scaffold was struck and we cleared up and went home. All in one day and for the same price as we originally quoted.

All in all, we had plumbers, builders, scaffolders, fire stoppers and decorators to attend this ‘simple’ project and all we can see for our efforts is a nice new length of pipe and a bend.

When we were asked to visit our client at a famous London hospital to talk about a greenhouse, we wondered what we were getting into.

The site has particularly well maintained grounds and all of the plants and flowers are grown on site in their own large greenhouse. The client was aware of our engineering and control expertise and had a problem that the automatic vents and shading systems in their greenhouses needed maintaining and repairing. Our controls engineers spent a week cleaning and greasing all of the automatic vent armatures and linkages until they were all operating smoothly again.

We then started on the automatic shades. These are opened and closed by a motor driven shaft using 3mm stainless steel braided cables to drag the shade backwards and forwards at high level inside the greenhouse. We discovered that not only had some of the cables broken and frayed over time but that some had been replaced using only 1mm cable. What this meant was that the cable no longer laid neatly and smoothly on the shaft and instead it tangled, resulting in the system jamming up. We replaced all of the cables with the correct specification and ensured they wound on and off of the shafts properly. We also had to straighten one of the 5m long shafts as it had buckled during one of the system jams.

The client is now extremely happy that both his automatic vents and shading systems are working properly again.

Our University client asked us to investigate and repair a leak on a plate heat exchanger. When we arrived on site, we found the leak was on a pump flange and it had also damaged the pump. We contacted Grundfos who quickly helped us select a replacement pump as the existing was now obsolete.

Unfortunately, when we changed the pump and made the necessary pipework alterations, the existing steel pipe connecting the heat exchanger and the 3 port valve split. We then had to fabricate a new section of pipework and reconnect everything back together. This was all achieved in 48 hours with minimal down time for the University.

In the photographs, you can see the damaged installation as it was when we arrived on site, the newly installed pump and then with its thermal insulation shell installed. The final photograph shows the pump having been commissioned and operating.

Zephyr Engineering Ltd

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