In this department, we look at the products, tools, and services that make a contractor successful. Each month we'll pick a contracting firm — past winners of our Contractor of the Year Award, winners of either a Quality Home Comfort Award or a Design/Build Award, and other nationally recognized figures — and see what tools of the trade they prefer and that help make them successful.
John Sigman is president of Sigman Heating & Air Conditioning, a $2.3 million, primarily residential service and replacement company in Southwestern Illinois. The company, which has been in business for 17 years, has won Contracting Business Quality Home Comfort Awards in 2004 and 2005.
IN THE TRUCKS
- Number and type of trucks/vans: Chevy, GMC, Ford, and Dodge. We have nine vans, five pickup trucks, one box truck, one box trailer, and two flatbed trailers.
- Inventory on trucks/vans: Thermostats, motors, capacitors, contactors, relays, circuit boards, fan controls, transformers, belts, gas valves, coil cleaners, pvc, copper, black iron fittings, wire, fuses, and filters. Brand names include Honeywell, Totaline, White-Rodgers, Vapco, Nu-Calgon, GE, Emerson, Fasco, Bell & Gossett, and Taco.
- Standard tools technicians carry: Malco and Ridgid hand tools; Linde torch outfits; Ritchie (Yellow Jacket) tubing benders.
- Preferred test instruments technicians carry: Fluke, UEI and Amprobe volt, ohm and amp meters; CPS scales; Inficon and DTec refrigerant and combustible gas detectors; UEI combustion analyzers and CO detectors; Dwyer magnahelic gauges.; Cooper and CPS electronic and infrared thermometers
- Preferred brand of ladders: Werner extension and step ladders.
- Preferred field communications method: Nextel two-way radios and phones, SBC pagers.
- Wireless field service software: Electronic Service Control (ESC).
IN THE OFFICE
- Preferred business management software: Coastal, ESC, QuickBooks
- Preferred load calculation software: WrightSoft, Adtek.
- Preferred sales management software: ESC, Adtek.
- Preferred computer/ printer equipment: Dell, Nobilis, QMS, Hewlitt-Packard, Epson.
- Preferred photocopier equipment: Canon, Hewlitt-Packard.
- Business connects to the Internet via: Broadband cable.
- Preferred Internet service provider: Charter Cable.
- Preferred business software package: Coastal.
- Vehicle Tracking System: Shadow Tracker.
- Preferred uniform supplier: Purchase from Bryant and WaterFurnace.
- Credit Cards Accepted: Visa, Mastercard, Discover.
IN THE SHOP
- Preferred HVAC heating equipment brands: Bryant, ClimateMaster, WaterFurnace.
- Preferred HVAC cooling equipment brands: Bryant, ClimateMaster, WaterFurnace.
- Preferred accessory brands: Bryant, WaterFurnace, Fantech, Honeywell, Arzel, Vanguard, Bell & Gossett, Taco, Infloor.
- Amount of equipment inventoried: Approximately $100,000.
- Warehouse equipment used: Kubota forklifts, Yeats carts, Genie material lifts.