Home » Flow-Fasteners for HVAC Assembly Challenges
HVAC products and services offered to the consumer come with little to no room for revamping. As the cost of energy continues to rise, manufacturers have come under pressure to meet production goals, such as reducing energy usage, maintaining occupant comfort, and sustaining high levels of energy savings throughout the year. Even modern HVAC systems lose operational efficiency after installation because of improper manufacturing and installation techniques. Duct leakage is a major contributor to the rising cost of energy; air inside of the duct under positive pressure will leak out of the Pittsburgh/Snap lock seams, from the slip, drive or TDC connector joints, or out of wall penetrations from damper rods. This leakage causes two problems: one is when air leaks out of a duct system, some areas will be short of airflow. Secondly, this lack of air can cause overheating in the summer and an inability to heat in the winter. If the ductwork is not designed or assembled properly, leakage rates up to 25% can be expected. A solution is advanced flow fastener assembly. This process has already been proven through the automotive and white goods industries and ensures the quality of the fastener is maintained under intense conditions.
Fasteners require an assembly system that realizes the importance of creating a stable joint while protecting the fastener during the feeding and installation process. The specially formed tip of the flow fastener generates frictional heat under high pressure and at high speeds, creating a flow path in materials, which have not been pre-drilled. At the start of the process, high rotation rate and pressure heat soften the material through friction. The softened layers are stretched into a funnel and multiple threads are formed at reduced speed. The treads created are a common pitch and can accommodate a standard metric screw, if repairs ever need to be carried out. The next step is the pre-tightening of the screw until head contact is made and then the final tightening of the fastener to the preset parameters of torque and angle. The entire process takes less than one to two seconds (depending on fastener type and material combination).