Blogs

Be the first person to recommend this.
Last time In my last article, someone commented on static tip placement about filter location. I sincerely appreciated this observation, as sometimes I struggle to come up with a topic, and this was the inspiration for what I’m about to share right now. Less than ideal First off, we as an industry do a terrible job when it comes to selecting filters. You might not fall into that category, but I believe that is a true statement for many contractors in business. In Manual D®, the duct design process has us filling out a friction rate worksheet. In step two, we are required to record our component losses. The filter(s) is one of these losses (pressure drops). ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Summer is in full force! HVAC field staff are working hard to keep their clients cool this summer. However, keeping yourself cool while working on equipment this summer is equally essential. The combination of high temperatures, high humidity, and physical work can lead to work-related heat illnesses like heat exhaustion and heat stroke. In addition, hot weather slows down the body's ability to perform, and you need to know your body's ability to work in the heat. When I was in the field, we tried to get our attic installations completed early in the morning. Our goal was to have these types of installations completed by noon. We encouraged technicians and ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Bottom Line: The ACCA Duct Slide Rule® is a great tool to find opportunities, but more work is necessary to fix a hot/cold room. Background: A great question to ask new customers is, "do you have any hot/cold rooms?" When you offer to resolve their problems it can make you an instant hero. Rooms that are used often and are uncomfortable can make the whole house difficult to live in. Customers hate to constantly adjust the thermostat to get comfortable. And it is surprising how sensitive we are to temperature differences. Most people can sense a temperature difference of less than 1˚F. So, when you solve this problem it’s a great way to demonstrate ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Step 1a: Measure airflow to the room. F Vane anemometers are an inexpensive tool and a good way to estimate airflow. They range from $100 - $200, but you can spend as much as $1,000. NOTE: I recommend one that comes with an extension or “pole” and connects to an app on your phone. Flowhoods ® are more expensive ($1,500 - $3,000), and a bit more cumbersome, but they are another great way to estimate airflow. A powered Flowhood is highly recommended for its accuracy, but that’s another blog. NOTE: Ensure the tech knows how to use the tool. If you measure the air velocity at the register with an anemometer, then document the register/diffusor ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
ACCA Members- The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division announced that it is reviewing regulations addressing the distinction between an employee and an independent contractor under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Independent contractors are not guaranteed the federal minimum wage and overtime pay that covered employees receive under the FLSA. DOL published a final rule on this issue on this issue on January 7, 2021. The rule adopted an economic reality test that considers whether a worker operates their own business or is economically dependent on an employer for work. DOL delayed that rule on March 4, 2021, and then withdrew it on May 6, 2021, but ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Many states are now allowing for the use of low-Global Warming Potential (GWP) A2L refrigerants for air conditioning. Despite ACCA’s work to ensure a singular federal phasedown schedule, there continues to be a patchwork of state and local requirements depending on where you are. Your customers that are environmentally well-read may be asking about low-GWP sooner than you think. Read on! What’s in Your State? Connecticut, Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Washington, and West Virginia have already updated their state building codes to allow for the use of A2L refrigerants in air conditioners. In addition, Arizona, Indiana, ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
An NFPA Industry Task Group with ACCA representation has recommended an amendment to the 2023 NEC to exempt ALL outdoor HVACR from having GFCI protection until September 1, 2026. Background Section 210.8(F) in the 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC) requires GFCI protection on outdoor HVACR equipment. Due to electrical incompatibilities, there have been numerous reports of nuisance trips in the field. In response, the NFPA Standards Council agreed to form a Task Group of affected stakeholders, “ to evaluate and reach an informed, technically substantiated resolution to the issues raised .” The group was encouraged to submit proposals to revise the ...
1 comment

Summer’s On Fire, Yo

Be the first person to recommend this.
Bottom Line: The chances for a HOT summer are HIGH almost everywhere. Background: NOAA offers forecasts that indicate the likelihood that the temperatures and precipitation (rain) will be higher / about the same / lower than usual. They indicate how much more / less likely with colorful bands. It is very easy to misread these bands as indicators of the severity of the heat, but that is not so, it is only the chances of increased / decreased temperatures. Quick Warning: Manage your equipment inventory! New regional standards take effect on 1 January 2023. Don’t get caught holding the bag. Summer Forecast: June, July, and August are shaping ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
If you haven't heard, the EPA is moving to ban disposable cylinders under the AIM Act . Late last year ACCA partnered with fellow HVACR industry associations Heating, Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) and Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) in filing a petition to overturn the EPA's ban. That litigation is moving forward. Final written arguments are due on July 22, and we anticipate oral arguments taking place sometime in the fall. While we wait for the outcome, you can do your part to help stop the ban by participating in our Stop the Ban! campaign if you haven't already. Please take a moment to ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
In a recent publication , the Education Commission of the States analyzed the "State of the State" addresses of 44 governors to find out what issues they care about the most. The group found that 34 governors highlighted workforce development and career and technical education (CTE) as top priorities. Many also proposed investment in job training programs using federal stimulus funds and also promoted increased grant funding to expand CTE programs. This report is encouraging as it shows America's leaders realize the importance of a skilled workforce and understand that further investment in career and technical education is a necessity. Earlier this year, ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
On Wednesday, May 11 at 12:00 pm EDT, ACCA Codes & Coffee welcomes three prominent OEMs, who will each provide an update on the pending residential HVAC products that will utilize A2L refrigerants. The codes and standards covering the installation of such products are put to bed and attendees will get an overview from the OEMs of what the UL and ASHRAE standards for these products will cover, including unique installation requirements. An update on industry A2L research will also be provided. A Q&A session will take place at the end. The three OEM panelists are shown below. Rusty Tharp, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Environmental ...
0 comments

COVID Killing Filters

Be the first person to recommend this.
Bottom Line: New research shows that specially treated filters quickly killed the COVID-19 virus using a common antiseptic agent. Unfortunately, this research left me with enough unanswered questions that I remain skeptical. Also, no estimate of when or if filters will be in the supply house. Background: This filter deactivated the COVID-19 virus, why does this matter? Good filters can capture a virus, bacteria, or fungus, but they stop there… they only catch the bad guys. When the filter is changed, great care must be taken not to disturb the filter, or those pollutants will be reintroduced into the air we breathe. According to this research, this treatment ...
1 comment
1 person recommends this.
At its April 14, 2022, meeting, the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) Consensus Committee – Residential approved proposals submitted by ACCA for public review and comment. The proposals were initially developed by ACCA’s Codes Subcommittee. Requirement for ACCA Manual D The IECC Residential Committee approved ACCA’s proposal to add a new requirement to comply with Manual D®, Residential Duct Systems , as shown below. N1103.3.1 (R403.3.1) Design and sizing. Duct systems shall be designed and sized in accordance with ANSI/ACCA Manual D. Currently, the Energy Code already specifies that heating and cooling equipment must be sized ...
2 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
What is prior approval and why is it required? Federal law and the Federal Election Commission (FEC) require that all trade association connected political action committees (PACs) obtain written approval from individual members before talking about the importance of the PAC. Organizations may only grant prior approval each calendar year to one of the trade associations to which they belong. Granting prior approval simply gives ACCA permission to communicate to eligible employees you designate in your company about ACCA-PAC and the role it plays in advancing and protecting the industry's interests. It does not obligate your company or employees to support ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Regulations on vehicle tracking for employers vary from state to state. Some states require tracking to be disclosed regardless of who owns the vehicle. Did you know that in New Jersey just passed a law requiring employers provide written notice to employees before using tracking devices in a vehicle the employee drives? The requirement applies regardless of who owns the vehicle. While not required under law in every state, it is considered best practice for employers to disclose their tracking policy to employees. Many contractors and small business owners use GPS to track their fleets. This can help increase accountability, monitor costs, and improve safety. ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Bottom Line: Train your team on how you want things done. Whether your team is a group of managers, technicians, installers, or office staff… train your team. Last month, we asked if I should train my team ( follow this link to the blog ). This month we look at another aspect of training your team, the value of standard operating procedures. Standardization Standard procedures save time and provide a path to consistent results that can lead to excellent customer service. I can speak from personal experience that standard procedures save time. For example, at ACCA, I went through five employees (for one position) in about a year. And just when the ...
1 comment

3 Month Forecast - HOT

Be the first person to recommend this.
Opening Apology: I began my last forecast with some disparaging remarks about NOAA and their ability to predict the weather. In retrospect, as projected, we had a very “above normal” (maybe even warm) winter. NOAA, mea culpa. Bottom Line Up Front: It’s going to be warm. Don’t quit reading too soon, see “Get Good” at the very end. “Spring” Forecast: Warm! “Summer” Forecast: HOT! Heat. Everywhere. Reminder this is the chance it will be warmer… not how much it will be warmer. Anyway, all vacations are cancelled, keep your tech’s and installer’s coolers stocked, and be safe out there. “Fall” Forecast: At last, a break. Not. Well, North & ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Background: I’ve written many blogs over the past two years about GFCI nuisance trips on outdoor HVACR due to the addition of 210.8(F) in the 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC). If you’ve been paying attention, that requirement mandated the use of Class A GFCI devices for outdoor equipment, including HVACR disconnects. The problem is due to the electrical incompatibility between GFCI devices and HVAC equipment. Most jurisdictions in the U.S. have either not adopted the 2020 NEC yet or have adopted it excluding 210.8(F). This is mostly due to the efforts of ACCA, its ACOs and state authorities. Regardless of all this, your installed equipment needs ...
0 comments

Buyer Beware

3 people recommend this.
Bottom Line Up Front: Don’t get caught with equipment you cannot install. Think Twice With supply shortages, stocking the warehouse seems like a great idea. But new regional standards in the South and Southwest are based on INSTALLATION … and not date of manufacture . This means that after 1/1/2023 , contractors in these regions are PROHIBITED from installing equipment that does not meet the new standards. The new standards effective in 2023 require a seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) for residential systems: North Region: 14 SEER Southeast/Southwest Region: 15 SEER Legislation has been introduced to change unify it to ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Yesterday, ACCA President & CEO Barton James sent a letter to leaders in Congress urging them to re-open the U.S. Capitol complex to the public. Before the pandemic, the Capitol campus--which includes the U.S. Capitol, House and Senate office buildings, and over 270 acres of grounds--was a lively, vibrant environment, where Americans from across the country and all walks of life could engage with members of Congress and their staff on the issues affecting them. For the past two years or so, however, meetings have only been taken on a 'by appointment' basis, and as a result Capitol Hill has been noticeably unoccupied for much of that time. In his letter, ...
0 comments