Contracting Business/Kelly Faloon
Contracting Business/Kelly Faloon
Endeavor Business Media
Contracting Business/Kelly FAloon
Kelly L. Falloon
AHR Expo
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AHR 2022: State of the HVACR Industry Snippets

Feb. 2, 2022
Six industry leaders came together and discussed the issues facing the HVACR industry today.

The second day of the 2022 AHR Expo, Feb. 1, saw six industry leaders come together and discuss the issues facing the HVACR industry today.

Panelists were Mick Schwedler, president of the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers; Stephen Yurek, president and CEO of the Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute; Talbot Gee, CEO of Heating, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration International; Roberta MacGillivray, 2022 president of the National Air Filtration Association; Dominick Guarino, CEO of the National Comfort Institute; and moderator Bryan Orr, host of the HVAC School podcast.

Some key comments:

  • Continued supply chain issues. “Manufacturers deserve a lot of credit for what they’ve been able to accomplish, but 2022 will be a tough year,” Gee said. Contractors will need to be more flexible, and manufacturers will need to look at sourcing materials locally. We were addicted to just in time; I hope we are more resilient.
  • Recruiting challenges. “Many have withdrawn from the workforce, and the skills gap continues to widen as new technology comes to market,” Guarino noted. “We need to redefine the tech workforce and move from tradesman to professional by offering clear career paths.”
  • COVID-19 pandemic. “Our industry has never been more essential,” Schwedler said. “The public became aware of what our industry does. We are fully connected as a world, with more people involved in problem-solving.”
  • Indoor air quality (IAQ) and human health. “Before COVID-19, there was a tradeoff between energy efficiency and human health,” MacGillivray explained. “As we solve the pandemic issue, we must continue our focus on how IAQ affects human health and productivity.”
  • Focus on systems, not equipment. “Our focus used to be on the box, on the equipment and the installation of it,” Yurek noted. “Now, we need to address the entire HVAC system to provide efficiency and comfort. The change we will see over the next few years will be nothing we’ve seen before.”