It’s Springtime, and everyone is taking a moment to breathe a sigh of relief from our crazy winter and, oh yeah, the pandemic. Well, for HVAC contractors, you should only take a moment because your business needs to be ready as we get closer to summer. Now is the time to prepare and make plans. None of your customers want to be caught in the heat of summer without a working air conditioning system.
Benjamin Franklin said, ‘By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.’ So, what do you do to get ready? We asked this question to three High-Performance HVAC contractors to see how they gear up. They shared four common tips:
Have A Plan
‘Plans are of little importance, but planning is essential.’ — Winston Churchill, former British Prime Minister
For Greg Wallace, president of Progressive Heating and Air Conditioning in Newnan, GA, (ncilink.com/1117CS), making summer plans is the key to his company’s success. He explains Progressive’s summer preparation plans are as follows
‘We divide our service group into a demand team and a maintenance team. Organizing in this way allows us to handle more demand calls during the busy summer season without having to reschedule maintenance agreements. With our plan, we begin contacting customers about maintenance renewals on March 1st. Then we send reminder emails to existing maintenance customers on March 15th to gear up to get out before the hot weather hits in Georgia.
‘Our sales team proactively calls anyone waiting to replace their system in March and April to try and get those done early and stay ahead of summer emergency ‘no air conditioning’ installations.’
In Houston, Punbar LLC (ncilink.com/Punbar) co-owner Ronald Amaya says they begin summer preparations during the slow winter season with a recruiting campaign to staff up for summer if they need to. ‘In January and February, we conduct formal and informal training classes as well as on-the-job training.’
‘For example,’ Amaya says, ‘Our 2021 our plans include focusing on converting service calls into replacement opportunities (including ductwork).
‘Our techs must meet set training criteria for different types of HVAC systems, refrigerant types, equipment conditions, system status based on static pressure measurement, and so on,’ he adds.
He says this includes focusing on troubleshooting (training done in the office) and sales strategies.
Make Sure You Are Stocked and Staffed
‘In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.’ — Dwight D. Eisenhower, past U.S. president
Greg Wallace says Progressive’s summer plans include stocking up on all the necessary parts and equipment. They also make sure they have enough staff to handle the increased workload of the busy season.
‘We have a varied truck stock list for our service technicians in spring and fall,’ Wallace says. ‘It’s not a huge difference, but we do make some minor changes such as removing gas valves, ignitors, and other such items. Then we add a few more filter driers, refrigerant tanks, condenser motors, condensate pumps, and so on to get ready for the spring and summer.’
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