1. What is the biggest challenge growers face with indoor growing climate control?
Geoff Brown: By its very nature, HVAC design isn’t something that can be figured out on the fly. Long equipment lead times, high-voltage electrical connections that require hiring an engineer, city or state permitting—they’re all factors that need to be accounted for ahead of time. And it’s even more complicated, and critical, when scaling up to facilities 10,000 sq. ft. or more. It can be overwhelming without the right help.
2. How does HVAC planning change as your facility grows?
Aaron Hook: Scaling up is not as simple as adding more of everything. Traditional HVAC is not built for plants; it’s built for people. Minor gaps in performance that could be patched with a Band-Aid in a small space can become catastrophic fail points in a larger one. That’s why investing in purpose-built HVAC—the first time around—needs to be a commercial grower’s top priority. It has proven to pay dividends far down the road. We’re here to help growers find a solution designed to do just that.
Brown: HVAC can’t be an afterthought, but rather a holistic, facility-level conversation. It should be as—maybe even more—important than your lighting decision.
3. What should growers consider before making a buying decision?
Brown: Supplementing a cooling-only HVAC system with standalone dehumidification works well in rooms with less dehumidification demand—veg rooms, for instance—where systems don’t fight each other as much. But these solutions can struggle to keep up in a commercial facility.
That’s when integrated units make more and more sense: less equipment can achieve the same or better results, saving money in the long run.
4. How does the Quest IQ Series address these challenges?
Brown: Quest IQ is truly designed for the indoor growing environment. It’s purpose-built to handle heating, cooling, dehumidification and ventilation with precision, flexibility and scalability. A centralized system like this eliminates the headaches—and hidden costs—of trying to get disparate systems to work together. It also means much lower installation and maintenance costs, with fewer points of failure and more value per dollar spent.
5. Is there anything else I should consider when planning my HVAC?
Hook: Work with a company that understands the unique challenges of growing indoors. At Hawthorne, our goal is to use our experience to help growers set their facilities up for success. Partnering with Quest to offer purpose-built HVAC is just one of the ways we do that.