Author: Guest Columnist

Three Ways to Solve HVAC Return Duct Obstacles

We face one consistent obstacle at DiFilippo’s Service Company — two-story homes built above short basements. Many were originally designed for heating, not cooling. We also encounter short basements where larger, where others forced efficient equipment to fit into tight, finished spaces. In short, many houses have upper floors where we cannot add duct work. These situations present challenges that require creativity to resolve. There will be times when a house beats you and you can’t do much. We don’t give up. Why?  Because you can make significant improvements at or near the equipment. So our company runs into...

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You CAN Sell High Performance HVAC Systems if You Just “Do It”

You really can sell High Performance HVAC Systems if you first commit to doing it, and then take things one step at a time. “It” is an interesting word. The dictionary definition includes: a crucial or climactic point; that one; an explicit or implicit state-of-affairs or circumstances; exactly what is needed or desired; a goal to be achieved. I’m amazed that such a simple two letter word baffles, stumps, and even paralyzes many individuals. To illustrate, the sports giant Nike first used the “just do it” phrase in 1988 as the cornerstone of a new ad campaign, propelling the...

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Stranded HVAC Performance Potential

Lack of System Performance Awareness Most consumers have minimal awareness and understanding of their heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. They typically regard the HVAC system as a simple appliance that is only noticed under the following situations: When it operates noisily It fails to deliver comfort If they see an upward deviation in their utility bill. The fact is, most HVAC systems — whether noticed or unnoticed — are not achieving the manufacturers’ designed performance specifications. This performance variance goes undetected when temperatures are moderate and maximum cooling or heating is not in demand. When an HVAC...

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From Tradesman to Craftsman: How Our Company Made the Leap

After more than 100 years in business, our management team made the decision to evolve into a performance-based service company. Very early in that process we began to understand we needed a new level of leadership for us to succeed. As leaders of our business, we had to get out front and lead, before we could expect the rest to follow. We regularly compared this process to pulling ropes versus pushing them. In life, a real leader must be out front pulling, not pushing from behind. Our management learned this the hard way. We erroneously thought we could stand...

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Explaining the Nuances of Field Airflow Measurement

Airflow rate through HVAC equipment can be one of the most difficult measurements to make in the field. This is mostly due to common equipment and system configurations that do not provide acceptable measurement sites. Ideally, we’d measure average air velocity through a straight section of duct near the equipment. We’d measure using a manometer and pitot tube or a thermal anemometer. Then we’d multiply average velocity by duct cross-sectional area to find volumetric flow rate. This method can achieve accuracy on the order of ±4 or 5% under ideal conditions. However, it’s rare to have the luxury of...

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