From The Field

Dec. 1, 2011
New leaders for 2011-12 were announced during the Mechanical Service Contractors of America’s (MSCA’s) 26th Annual Educational Conference held at the Broadmoor Hotel, Colorado Springs, CO, October 9-11.

MSCA Conference: Woodall Named Chairman; Borst Receives O'Brien Award; Contractors Learn & Have Fun

New leaders for 2011-12 were announced during the Mechanical Service Contractors of America’s (MSCA’s) 26th Annual Educational Conference held at the Broadmoor Hotel, Colorado Springs, CO, October 9-11.

Arnold "Woody" Woodall was named chairman of the MSCA Board of Managers. Robert Lake was named vice chairman. Richard A. Starr, LEED AP, assumed the responsibilities of treasurer.

Woodall is director of business development for Gary Company, Washington, DC., an MSCA STAR contractor.

Lake is president/COO officer of EMCOR Service/Mesa Energy Systems, Inc., Irvine, CA, an MSCA STAR and GreenSTAR contractor.

Starr is president/owner of Enterprise HVAC Service and Control in Twinsburg, OH. In 2008, Starr became Northern Ohio’s first LEED AP to be accredited within the "Existing Building Operations & Maintenance" (EBOM) track. Enterprise HVAC Service and Control is the 2011 Commercial HVAC Contractor of the Year.

Russell J. Borst, LEED AP, vice president of service, Hurst Mechanical, Belmont, MI, was presented the D.S. O'Brien Award of Excellence. The D.S. O'Brien Award of Excellence was established by MSCA in 2000, to recognize individuals who exhibit extraordinary dedication and outstanding commitment to the mechanical service contracting industry and to MSCA.

"Russ's energy, enthusiasm, and passion on behalf of MSCA are extraordinary. His dedication and commitment to fostering the advancement of the HVAC industry has been widely recognized," said Thom Brazel, chairman of the MSCA board of managers.

Borst serves on the MSCA Labor Relations Committee, and was chairman of the association’s Board of Managers in 2008.

The theme for the 2011 MSCA Educational Conference was "24-Carrot Service: Putting People First." Presentations focused on initiatives employers can use to motivate employees, and build their "employership brand."

Keynote speakers included author Chester Elton, employer consultant Jim Baston, economist Lowell Catlett, Peter Sheahan, CEO of ChangeLabs, and motivational speaker Ross Shafer. Popular roundtable forums were also featured.

New Board Members Named
New MSCA board members include Jaimi Lomas, general manager for the Service & Energy Division, A.O. Reed & Co., San Diego, CA, joining for her first three-year term. Lomas is the 2011 Contracting Woman of the Year. Jim Bartolotta, executive vice president, Air Comfort, Broadview, IL, also joined the MSCA board for his first three-year term. — Terry McIver; supporting information by MSCA

Tally Up Four More Projects for Haberberger, Inc.

Haberberger, Inc., a St. Louis-based mechanical contracting company, recently completed work on three separate projects in St. Louis County, and a fourth project in Jefferson City, MO.

Haberberger worked as part of the team assembled by Hof Construction to handle work on the HVAC portion of the new St. Louis County Animal Vector Control Shelter in Florissant, MO. Haberberger's work was part of the larger transformation of a 26,000-sq.ft. warehouse into the new animal vector control shelter.

The Haberberger team also completed two installation projects at the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (MSD) Grand Glaize plant located in Valley Park, MO. Haberberger field team members successfully worked with Dan Hof and Tony Perotta of Hof Construction to complete the project.

Work at the MSD Grand Glaize plant took place between April and September as the Haberberger team tackled two separate projects at the facility. In the first project, Haberberger installed a redundant washer compactor at the plant by relocating an existing washer compactor and modifying the piping and electrical for the new equipment. Haberberger’s second project at the MSD Grand Glaize plant included the installation of new valves and piping in four different splitter boxes.

Haberberger also completed work on the mechanical portion of a project to add ultraviolet treatment to the Jefferson City Water Reclamation Facility in Jefferson City, MO.

Haberberger provided solid dates and times for completion, and endured that the project proceeded according to plan. The crew was led by project manager Jeff Roberts, and general foreman Clay Buxton, in conjunction with Sircal Construction. The team tied 54-in. ductile iron pipe into the existing effluent piping to route the plant’s waste matter into the ultraviolet facility prior to discharge. When both 54-in. lines were tied in, a portion of the plant had to be shut down in order to safely complete the project. Key challenges were tying the new 54-in. piping into the existing piping, while keeping the plant in operation.

"When we made the tie-ins, we were also limited on time. And, after we had the pipe in place at the tie-in points, we had to pressure test it. We used an internal joint tester to test the joints before filling the pipe with water. If we had put the system into service and found leaks, it would have been very difficult to backtrack and shut the plant down," Roberts says.

The internal joint tester was not available for rental, so it had to be purchased at a price tag of $6,000. But, Roberts says it was a labor saver and time saver.

"When you purchase it, you do feel as if you’re spending a lot of money, but it definitely made testing the pipe go much easier. In the grand scheme of things, it was a good investment," he says.

ANSI Accredits Contractor Training Group, Blue C

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has bestowed accredited status on Blue C, LLC, under the ANSI Certificate Accreditation Program (ANSI-CAP).

Blue C, LLC is a professional organization of HVACR educators working together to provide challenging and comprehensive online assessments, reviews, courses, and programs for the HVACR industry. The ANSI accreditation has been awarded to Blue C’s HVACR 4-Year Apprenticeship Program.

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"Accreditation under ANSI-CAP helps to assure integrity and consistency within the credentialing field, and helps to bolster a more robust and qualified workforce. Blue C now has a concrete way to show students and customers that its certificates represent the best in quality education and training," says Lane Hallenbeck, ANSI vice president, accreditation services.

ANSI-CAP accredits organizations that issue education and training certificates to the U.S. workforce. The program is the first of its kind to offer a formal, third-party process for review and recognition of quality certificate programs.

ANSI-CAP provides neutral, third-party assurance that a certificate program meets ASTM Standard Practice for Certificate Programs, an American National Standard developed by ASTM International. ANSI-CAP also provides quality benchmarks for the design of future certificate programs. With these benchmarks, workers and employers are better able to determine the value and meaning of training and educational certificates, helping to boost the overall quality of the American workforce.

"This has been a grass roots effort since we started," says Chris Compton, CEO at Blue C. "We now have the only ANSI accredited HVACR technician apprenticeship related training program in the world. It's also the only online program. ANSI and HVAC Excellence Accreditations, serve as monuments for our hard work."

"Achieving this level of accreditation should leverage decision makers at all levels to recognize that online for the trades occupations is a worthwhile endeavor and a significant tool to be used to keep our workforce in top notch condition in a very efficient and timely way," Compton says.

Bay Area Air Conditioning & Heating a 'Showcase Your NATE' Sweepstakes Winner

Bay Area Air Conditioning & Heating, Crystal River, FL, is the latest winner in the "Showcase Your NATE" Sweepstakes, by North American Technician Excellence. The sweepstakes rewards contractors for promoting their NATE-certified technicians.

Bay Area submitted the winning entry, earning the company $1,000 in local advertising and/or NATE promotional materials. The company services an area of seven counties.

To demonstrate the various ways they showcase their NATE-certified technicians, the Bay Area team submitted examples of brochures, company website, service vans, and print ads that prominently feature NATE.

One of those entries was randomly selected from the numerous submissions received from contractors throughout the country.

"Not only do we recognize the importance of hiring NATE-certified technicians, but we also understand the importance of letting our customers know that our certified professionals are qualified to offer superior service," says Dee Mahler-Castillo, marketing manager for Bay Area Air Conditioning & Heating.

"Winning this prize money will allow us to further spread the word about our skilled, knowledgeable, NATE-certified team through local advertising," she says.

One additional winner will be selected in December, 2011.

Carrier Hall of Fame Company
This most recent "Showcase Your NATE" Sweepstakes winner has also earned another recent acolade. Bay Area’s founder and owner, Dave Hutchins, has received a 2011 Carrier Hall of Fame Award.

The coveted lifetime achievement award is presented annually to a select few industry-leading contractors chosen by a Carrier management committee. Nominees must have a minimum 20 years association with Carrier as their primary brand. They must also be a Factory Authorized Dealer, and be far enough along in their careers to warrant the recognition of lifetime achievement. Hutchins started Bay Area Air Conditioning & Heating in 1975 with a small home equity line of credit, one employee and one truck. During the past 36 years, he has grown his business to become one of the leading HVAC dealerships in Florida. He currently employs a team of 52 employees and manages a fleet of 30 trucks.

There's An App For That!
Danfoss has introduced the "KoolApp" refrigerant converter mobile app. The app is based on the well-known Danfoss Refrigerant Slider, and converts mobile devices that use Android and Apple IOS into user-friendly pressure-to-temperature refrigerant converters. The app enables users to enter exact figures or use the slide ruler to obtain precise, accurate conversions, based on National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Refrigerant Properties and Antoine equations.

1979: S.W. Trelease wrote that heat pumps can reclaim lower temperature heat than do conventional heat recovery units. And, the hydronic heat pump’s adaptability to industrial applications where heating and cooling may be required at the same time, is another advantage. Arnett Smiley wrote about poor suction line piping design as a cause for lost liquid. Large refrgerating systems for food processing or chemical plants involve suction and liquid lines that may run for thousands of feet, and evaporators that may hold hundreds of gallons of liquid refrigerant. If these systems aren’t equipped with a proper suction line trap or accumulator and a means of tranferring the liquid which is rought back down the souction line, compressor problems will develop.

AHR EXPO — International Air-Conditioning Heating, Refrigeration Exposition — Jan. 23-25, McCormick Place, Chicago, IL;

ACCA — Air Conditioning Contractors of America —Conference & Indoor Air Expo, Mar. 5-8, Las Vegas, NV;

ASHRAE — American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers — High Performance Buildings Conference, Mar. 12-13, San Diego, CA;

MCAA — Mechanical Contractors Association of America — Annual Convention, Mar. 18-22, Orlando, FL;

About the Author

Terry McIver | Content Director - CB

A career publishing professional, Terence 'Terry' McIver has served three diverse industry publications in varying degrees of responsibility since 1987, and worked in marketing communications for a major U.S. corporation.He joined the staff of Contracting Business magazine in April 2005.

As director of content for Contracting Business, he produces daily content and feature articles for CB's 38,000 print subscribers and many more Internet visitors. He has written hundreds, if not two or three, pieces of news, features and contractor profile articles for CB's audience of quality HVACR contractors. He can also be found covering HVACR industry events or visiting with manufacturers and contractors. He also has significant experience in trade show planning.