HVAC Contractors Take care of Rising Crime Charges

HVAC Contractors Deal with Rising Crime Rates | ACHR News

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HVAC Producers to Exit Russian Market

HVAC Manufacturers to Exit Russian Market | ACHR News

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Southeastern House Providers Buys Mario’s Air Conditioning & Heating

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Knowledge Exhibits Three Causes Techs Go away HVAC Contractors

Data Shows Three Reasons Techs Leave HVAC Contractors | ACHR News

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Elon Musk, Electrical Car Makers Present Some HVAC Perception

Elon Musk, Electric Vehicle Makers Provide Some HVAC Insight | ACHR News

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KY Man Prays With HVAC Unit

Every head bowed and every eye closed as we continue to pray for relief from this blistering June heatwave. The possible light–or maybe a big box fan–at the end of the tunnel is that, as I write this, we are currently on the last day of an excessive heat warning (most of the rest of Kentucky is under a heat advisory). But I say “possible” because this was supposed to end YESTERDAY, and, well, here we are.

And if that light is imminent, it appears it will only be on for a brief couple of days.

DEALING WITH EXCESSIVE KENTUCKY HEAT

Here’s the latest update from the National Weather Service:

This extreme heat looks like it will last through Friday, at least for some parts of the region, so either an extension of the warning or potentially an advisory will likely be added for a portion of the region in upcoming forecasts. Some relief is on the way for the weekend. However, the heat will return with a vengeance next week, with triple digit highs in the forecast.

If you’ve been running the kids out of the kiddie pool so you can just sit in it–maybe even fully clothed–who could blame you? But you can do so much more than that.

A PRAYER FOR THE HVAC

But maybe you should commit it to prayer…as in, a fervent wish that your air conditioning unit doesn’t buckle under the oppression. That’s what Ryan Sturm of Frankfort did.

“O Lord, we pray for a hedge of protection over these vessels unto which we are not worthy. For these conditions of air, Lord, we pray that you might fill them with a double portion of freon and an unmatched work ethic during these next couple of weeks trying in the absolute sauna that is Central KY and beyond. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.”

I understand this all light-hearted fun and if there are those of you are dealing with HVAC issues, it is NO laughing matter. And if that is the case, maybe you’ve availed yourself of ways to keep cool.

KEEPING COOL IN EXTREME HEAT

I certainly feel for all those who have to work outside. I always encourage water and lots of it, although I’m sure folks are way ahead of me on that one. But there are other tips, as well. I mean, it is just June. We still have July and August to anticipate.

HELP YOUR FEET BEAT THE HEAT

And here are some REALLY good ideas on how to keep your feet comfortable during the summer heat:

But maybe we start with taking a knee like Ryan Sturm has done. I pray that it’s working out for him and his family. At the very least, he’s made a lot of people smile.

LOOK: The most extreme temperatures in the history of every state

Stacker consulted 2021 data from the NOAA’s State Climate Extremes Committee (SCEC) to illustrate the hottest and coldest temperatures ever recorded in each state. Each slide also reveals the all-time highest 24-hour precipitation record and all-time highest 24-hour snowfall.

Keep reading to find out individual state records in alphabetical order.

Best Backyard Games To Play This Summer

You can entertain your friends and family this summer by adding these games to your next backyard get together.

Southern HVAC Acquires AirNow Cooling & Heating

Southern HVAC Acquires AirNow Cooling & Heating | ACHR News

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Intesis Helps You Take Management of Your HVAC – KNXtoday

The days to come are challenging. On one hand, energy demand and consumption are higher day after day. On the other hand, more and more regulations and directives are implemented to fight climate change. At the crossroads of these two facts, a sign stands where you can read “energy efficiency.” (Imagine it like a Las Vegas-style neon sign, shining in saturated colors but getting the energy from solar panels).

Technology is the magic wand that will enable us to reach the efficiency needed in terms of energy consumption. How? Eg, having HVAC systems under total control. (Some data: buildings are responsible for about 40% of global energy consumption; HVAC systems use half of the energy of a building; 100 million AC units are installed each year worldwide).

It becomes clear that reducing the energy consumption of the HVAC systems is mandatory, and here is where Intesis interfaces play their magic.

Case study: Integration of HVAC Systems to KNX for hotel projects

Arabian Homes is one of Saudi Arabia pioneer companies in building projects with great technical capacity.

One of the complexities of these projects was the wide variety of AC brands present in hotel complexes. And that’s why Arabian Homes chose Intesis gateways, which allow the integration of different AC brands into KNX.

After taking control of the HVAC systems, they can monitor detailed information in real time, eg, of errors and alarms (like filter status). This allows service teams to take immediate action to resolve issues. The ability to act faster to any problem improves guest comfort and reduces repair expenses. So, in abstract, thanks to the integration of HVAC Systems to KNX with Intesis gateways, Arabian Homes achieved great energy savings in their hotel projects, reducing energy consumption while simultaneously optimizing the comfort of hotel customers.

Case study: Automated Home

A 1902 large Edwardian house was brought into the 21st century by the hand of Andrew Ward of Wave Controls, who installed an energy-efficient KNX building automation solution. The network has over 150 lighting circuits, 15 zones of heating and cooling, motorized curtains and blinds on every window, and many other automated features (to get a picture: the basement houses, among other things, a golf simulator, a cinema, and a car lift.) To achieve these high levels of integration, they used 14 Intesis gateways, on HMS Industrial Networks building automation technology made to automate single processes or build multifunction systems.

Case study: Home Automation with KNX In 2009, Automated Habitat was commissioned to automate a large residence in Birkdale, an idyllic village of Southport. The system integrator in charge, Chris Talbot, chose KNX as the integration technology due to its versatility. Ten years later, the client was so happy that asked for new features. After studying the new project and realizing there was no need to replace the existing equipment, Christ looked for advice. Mark Warburton at Ivory Egg recommended the HMS Intesis gateway as the best choice: it is robust, reliable in the field for many years after installation, easy to use, and tested and certified to the highest quality standards.

www.intesis.com/about-hms/case-studies

FYI: Information Briefs in HVAC – June 6, 2022

FYI: News Briefs in HVAC – June 6, 2022 | ACHR News

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FYI: Information Briefs in HVAC – April 25, 2022 | 2022-04-25

FYI: News Briefs in HVAC – April 25, 2022 | 2022-04-25 | ACHR News

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HVAC Acquisition Development Has Reached the Center Innings | 2022-04-26

HVAC Acquisition Trend Has Reached the Middle Innings | 2022-04-26 | ACHR News

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HVAC Contractors Clarify Why Workers Depart | 2022-04-28

HVAC Contractors Explain Why Employees Leave | 2022-04-28 | ACHR News

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HVAC Producers Be part of Worldwide Efforts to Help Ukraine

HVAC Manufacturers Join International Efforts to Support Ukraine | ACHR News

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FYI: Information Briefs in HVAC – April 11, 2022 | 2022-04-11

FYI: News Briefs in HVAC – April 11, 2022 | 2022-04-11 | ACHR News

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HVAC Contractors Placed on Alert as Thieves Goal Metals | 2022-04-14

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HVAC Business Has By no means Been Extra Important

HVAC leaders discuss the state of the industry as it moves past the pandemic stage.



By Dave Lubach, managing editor

HVAC

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to loosen its grip on the country, many industries are reassessing the last two-plus years and considering how they’re emerging from these unprecedented times.

Leaders in the HVAC industry are among those looking back at this historical point in time and wondering what they’ve learned, and where they’re headed in the years to come.

“Our industry learned it has never been more essential,” says ASHRAE President Mick Schwedler. “I don’t necessarily know that we learned it, but the general public has learned it. They saw that in order to reopen their businesses, or to get their children back into schools and get students and staff in there in a healthy manner, they needed that guidance from us.”

Schwedler and other leaders in the HVAC industry gathered for a roundtable discussion at February’s AHR Expo in Las Vegas, an annual industry get-together of manufacturers, contractors, media, and others across the world. Joining Schwedler on the panel was:

Among the topics discussed during the hour-long “State of the HVAC Industry” were lessons learned during the pandemic, finding the next generation of HVAC technicians and training them, supply chain issues, and technology advancements.

What follows is a summary of the roundtable discussion of issues that have affected facility managers during the pandemic and HVAC concerns they may have in the near future.

IAQ impact

Before the pandemic, many people never gave a second thought about the quality of the air circulating around the office buildings, schools, or healthcare facilities they occupy during the day. Once the pandemic hit, indoor air quality (IAQ) became a common term for building occupants.

Poll after poll of indoor employees since the pandemic started have indicated that IAQ has emerged as one of the leading factors for people deciding where to work. IAQ also has factored into parents’ decisions about where to send their children for both K-12 and higher education institutions. The pandemic placed an increased emphasis on how people felt about the air they breathe all day.

“I think a lot of the innovations around IAQ are around giving real-time information not only for those who are managing the buildings, but those who are occupying them,” says MacGillivray. “Parents are asking schools if it’s safe to be in those classrooms. Teachers are asking about that. I think that’s a really important thing.”

IAQ has been on the radar of facility managers since well before the pandemic hit, but increased attention from the general public and building owners who may otherwise rely on facility personnel have placed extra emphasis on the HVAC industry to ensure future equipment exceeds regulatory standards.

“We shouldn’t be thinking of those minimum standards anymore,” MacGillivray says. “We should be thinking about what optimal standards are. Maybe a building was designed at minimal standards, but what can we do — I know cost is a factor — in terms of augmenting that? Can we retrofit, or do we have to go back to the drawing board? We just can’t go back to the minimum. We have to look at what the optimum is.”

Labor shortage and training

Like many industries, “The Great Resignation” has hit the HVAC industry. In turn, facilities departments across the country are losing employees due to retirement, more lucrative opportunities elsewhere, or leaving the industry entirely.

Finding the next generation of technicians, and providing effective, quality training to keep those technicians moving up through the ranks and staying in the industry are problems that facility managers share with the HVAC industry.

“We’ll see a huge amount of retirements, if we haven’t already,” says Yurek, when asked about the industry’s top challenges of the next five years. “Just getting people into the industry and the workforce trained and ready to go.”

One hiring aspect that managers should consider when searching for new technician candidates is to rebrand their job search process.

“Part of the gap is redefining who our technical workforce is,” Guarino says. “We need to change the narrative from being tradesmen to being professionals, true craftsmen. Most of the schools are called trade schools, and you learn the basics of the trade. But that just gets you started. All of us in the industry need to focus on raising that bar.

“That’s our challenge — to start working together more so that from a training standpoint, there are various levels of training. It’s getting us coordinated better. The career path needs to be clearer, telling (candidates) you can go from here to here, and compensation and everything else will follow. That’s going to be our challenge in the years to come.”

Guarino’s NCI organization focuses its efforts on training, and he discussed some ways managers can help their technicians get the help they need to move up in their positions.

“There’s some good online training that’s reinforcement training, more than ever,” he says. “We’re very focused in the next year on the YouTube-like, short things where you can just pop open on your phone and see how you do it. We need to get to that point, because when your technicians are in the field, they don’t have time to pop open a laptop or manual and find the answers, they need to get to it right away. That’s part of the training process — knowing how to find the answers — so we see that as a challenge.”

Supply chain issues

Supply chain concerns have affected all kinds of industries across the globe, and HVAC is no exception. For managers who are waiting on products to complete projects in their facilities, the wait might be a bit longer.

“This isn’t going to fix itself this year. It’s going to be a tough year,” Gee says. “Even if you can build it, you have to find a way to ship it.”

While many managers are at the mercy of their suppliers, Gee offered one bit of advice that could go a long way toward helping managers get what they need, when they need it.

“The customers who communicate, partner and work with their suppliers are at the top of the line,” he says. “If you’re a large volume customer, yet you’re erratic with your ordering, you get knocked down the list, because you’re just really hard to serve.”

looking ahead

Like the rest of the country, the roundtable participants were ready to put the pandemic in the rear-view mirror and focus on the industry’s future. Here is a sampling of some of the panel’s predictions of what managers can expect to see from the HVAC industry in the coming years.

Yurek: “The next really big challenge is the refrigerant transition that we’re going to see. The difference between the current A1 refrigerants and the A2Ls that are being considered for most products, there is really no difference. They’re pretty much exactly all the same based on the testing and research that ASHRAE and AHRI did as well as others. We’ve shown they can be used safely, like the A1s, but the technology is going to be a bit different. The final one is the whole electrification conversation, and what does this mean to the industry, and what does this mean to buildings where are our products are being installed and used? How do we address that, and what impact will that have on the supply chain?”

Schwedler: “I don’t think we know yet. There are going to be innovations that happen over the next three years that we don’t know about yet. From what we know today, the innovations to reduce environmental emissions are going to hit a lot of people. It’s not just legislators, it’s not a political thing. It’s a real business thing, and our response and our innovations to reduce our environmental emissions is going to be paramount the next five years. But I think there’s something that’s sneaks up on us that maybe the visionaries of the world might see, but we haven’t seen yet.”

MacGillivray: “Sometimes people just need to follow the standards. We do have to talk about what those best practices are, and I hope we don’t go backwards in terms of what we learned during this pandemic. It’s been important for COVID-19, but if we’re saying that MERV 13 systems are what’s keeping us healthy and productive, then I think the innovation going forward is proving that is what you’re actually getting in the space. That’s going to help commercial buildings bounce back.”

Guarino: “Where I think this industry can really see the change is at the street level. The equipment is some of the best we’ve ever had in the industry, but it doesn’t matter if what it’s connected to doesn’t work. The other part is consumer education. We’ve learned that we need to take the time to educate the customer, not only talking CFMs or BTUs and make their eyes glaze over. I’m talking about actually saying, ‘Come with me. Let’s explore your building together.’”

Dave Lubach is managing editor for the facilities market. He has seven years of experience covering facilities management and maintenance.

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