Salespeople have an enormous responsibility in system performance ratings. They must know how to offer the right options, not just gather nameplate information off existing equipment and then quote the same-sized replacement. Their view must expand beyond the equipment and look at what it’s attached to.
Installation crews determine how well the equipment performs. Their work influences system performance more than anyone else. For example, an excellent installation crew will get great results. Bad installations can’t hide once you add system ratings to your jobs. It’s the ultimate form of quality control.
Service and maintenance technicians discover conditions that lead to poor system performance and generate leads for the company to serve their customers better. So that means they test, diagnose, and prescribe solutions for any hidden defects they uncover. Without their hard work to discover poorly performing systems, there is no opportunity to solve long-standing customer issues. Problems remain hidden unless technicians make the defects visible through testing.
The office staff also needs to understand there is more to HVAC than just equipment. There are schedule tweaks to make and new services to offer that improve the way things are done. In addition, the ability to improve system performance and verify it through ratings helps to remove the seasonal nature of the HVAC Industry.
When the busy season slows down, there are always poorly performing duct systems needing help. The office staff can coordinate these jobs at slower times and keep everyone working throughout the year.
Your customers ultimately decide system performance ratings. If they ignore the necessary duct upgrades you recommend, there’s no way they can get the results they desire. Therefore customers decide how well they want their equipment to operate by confronting system issues that will keep it from performing as designed. It’s your responsibility to inform customers of problems. But it’s their responsibility to make an informed decision once you provide the facts.
Resources to Rate Total HVAC System Performance
Since delivered Btus are the heart of an HVAC system rating, you need resources to measure, compare against, and capture the information.
To that end, there are three resources you need are test instruments, system documentation, and technology to capture test results.
First, let’s look at the test instruments you will need to rate system performance.
- Manometer (Analog/Digital) – to measure system static pressures
- Air Balancing Hood – to measure airflow from each supply register and return grille
- Anemometer (Thermal/Hot-wire/Rotating Vane) – to measure air velocity and calculate airflow from registers and grilles you cannot measure with a balancing hood
- Thermometer/Psychrometer – to check equipment and system temperature and enthalpy change. You will also need documentation to rate system performance. It’s best to keep information in one location so it’s easy to reference as you measure the system
- Equipment specifications – to compare your field measurements against. They are the baseline for your readings. Without them, you’re guessing at the Btu targets needed for an HVAC system rating
- Floor plan and duct schematic – for a visual reference of the room’s, system conditions, and the duct sizes attached to them.
- Load Calculation or Estimated Room Airflow – to provide airflow targets to compare individual supply airflow and Btu measurements against.
Finally, you need the right technology to capture test results.
- A tablet or laptop with internet access – to input your system information and measurements into ComfortMaxx Verify
- A ComfortMaxx Verify Subscription – to perform the HVAC system rating calculations and generate reports.
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