Free cooling, is it worth the investment?

What is free cooling

Free cooling is an economical method of cooling which is utilised by businesses in various industries. The cooling process works through the use of external ambient temperatures as a natural cooling source. Using ambient temperatures as a means of cooling reduces the use of more power-consuming chillers, (especially their refrigerant compressors) in process cooling applications during colder ambient conditions. Considering this, the reduced use of a chiller results in the process of free cooling saving energy and reducing the carbon footprint which originates from your cooling equipment.

All of our free coolers come with a 3-way valve control, allowing for ease of integration into your new, or existing cooling systems and ensures the correct operation of fluid cooling throughout the year. Ambient and fluid temperature sensors are also included in each model, connecting into an integral control panel to provide holistic and accurate control while also simplifying installation.

How does free cooling work?

As mentioned, the cooling process involves the use of ambient temperature to provide cooling to your process. After awaiting the point where the external temperature drops below the fluid return temperature, the cooling system can begin to provide partial free cooling. The efficiency of this process is dependent on a number of factors, for example, the surface area of the free cooler will determine the efficiency with which it operates. When operating in dry bulb ambient air temperatures of just 3°C below the fluid supply temperature, the most efficient free cooling systems can result in 100% free cooling.

The benefits of free cooling

Environmental commitment and Energy Consumption

As previously mentioned, the use of free cooling can directly impact the carbon footprint left behind by the cooling system you or your company operate. When outdoor ambient temperatures drop, process heat is taken out of the process liquid by the free cooler before it enters the chiller and so reduces the stress placed on the chiller. This results in a lower input power requirement to run the cooling system.

When optimal ambient temperatures are reached the compressors within the chiller are not required to provide any cooling. The compressors are the most energy intensive component of a chiller, therefore reducing their operation further reduces the environmental impact of the cooling solution.

Operational cost reduction

In line with reducing the environmental impact of the cooling system, the reduced energy usage also assists in decreasing operational costs. Additionally, reduced pressure on the chiller decelerates its wear and tear, which in turn leads to an increased lifespan and less frequent maintenance costs.

Due to the relatively low ambient conditions that we experience in the UK, free coolers perform well leading to payback on the initial investment occurring swiftly. Additionally, the ongoing reduction in energy costs lead to savings in the future, further bolstering the usefulness of the cooling solution throughout its lifetime.

To meet your need, at Maziak we investigate and advise you on the best choice for your application. We provide a flexible service, supplying several orientations, including horizontal, vertical, V, or half-V type.


For more information, please call 01933 222000 or email us at

Free cooling, is it worth the investment