Contracting Business/Kelly Faloon
Contracting Business/Kelly Faloon
Endeavor Business Media
Contracting Business/Kelly FAloon
Kelly L. Falloon
Cb Cover Jan 2023cropped2 63c701232608c


Jan. 17, 2023
Comments from executives from leading HVACR associations and brands, and a selection of products you'll see at the Georgia World Congress Center.
The HVACR industry's show of shows -- the Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Exposition -- will be presented at the Georgia World Congress Center Feb.
6-8. Like many iterations before this, the show will be staged against many issues. This year's main issues -- carbonization, electrification, supply chain, training and refrigerant changes -- frame the event as a picture of multiple challenges and changes that effect every HVACR industry sector. In response to the constant changes in this industry, AHR Exposition's leaders request annual comments from executives from leading HVACR associations, for
inclusion in an annual AHR Trend Report. Commentator photos courtesy AHR.

Some excerpts follow. The entire AHR 2023 Trend Report can be found HERE.

Farooq Mehboob, President, Fellow ASHRAE

"As an industry and as individuals, we have experienced the profound and lasting impacts of a global pandemic. It is an honor to be a part of an industry that proactively faced the challenges precipitated by the pandemic, becoming a solid resource for the public, policymakers and the media in providing answers, posing solutions and preventing the spread of misinformation as it relates to HVACR.

"The challenge doesn’t stop here. It is the obligation of our industry to provide practical information and keep building readiness top of mind as the current pandemic continues and as we prepare to face the next."

Stephen Yurek, President/CEO of AHRI

"As energy prices continue to rise, consumers are more aware than ever of the importance of energy efficient equipment, and our industry is well prepared to fill that need.

"The hottest topic – and most pressing issue – is ensuring that refrigerants set to replace high-GWP ,HFCs are approved for
use in all 50 states. While we are making considerable progress, we have some distance to go before the 40 percent HFC reduction set to occur at the beginning of 2024.

"Certainly the most pressing issues facing the manufacturing side are continued supply chain issues and also ensuring that next-generation refrigerants will be able to be used in residential applications across all 50 states by mid-decade. Considerable progress has been made on the latter; the former thus far has defied a solution. Certainly high on our members’ radar is a solution to the supply chain issue for the long term. The current situation is unsustainable and is leading members to re-evaluate the sourcing of components to better ensure reliable availability in the future.

"The Board statement reiterated AHRI’s continued opposition to non-beneficial electric-only policies that restrict consumer choice."

Andy McMillan, president/managing director, BACnet International

"The external forces acting on the industry have increased in magnitude and volatility over the past few years. Things are not going to settle down anytime soon. If
anything, the rate of change and the impact of those external forces on the industry will increase.

"In building controls there is increasing recognition that all parts of the building infrastructure are related and need to be managed collectively. The digital and management chasms that frequently separate IT (Information Technology) and OT (Operational Technology) is being discussed and in many areas work is underway to address the issues."

Howard Weiss, chief operating officer/executive vice president, ESCO Group

"The HVACR industry is in the midst of the most significant technological revolution ever! Flammable refrigerants, electronic technology, equipment tied to the cloud, efficiency ratings, mini-splits systems, new codes, and
incorporating new control strategies into legacy equipment are examples of industry segments that are transforming how HVACR professionals are trained, and how they do their jobs.

"The good news is that new challenges also bring new opportunities! The HVACR industry can unite around education to help everyone understand the transformative changes, while reinforcing the basics. In doing so, we can improve the performance of equipment, reduce energy cost, and help improve the perception of the industry as a whole.

Talbot Gee, CEO, HARDI

"Because of supply chain delays, distributors need to keep more inventory. Not only are there additional financial costs associated with carrying extra inventory, but operational efficiency is compromised when trying to function around it.

"As of January 1st, 2023, there will be new equipment regulations and limitations. There is concern about whether suppliers will be able to adequately support demand with appropriate product in the first half of 2023. Labor challenges continue to be a concern. Between an aging work force, a lack of qualified candidates and two years’ worth of pandemic stress, our members are feeling the pressure to maintain performance and production levels."

Doug Bougher, director of applied sales, LG Air Conditioning Technologies.

"There are three changes in the industry that I’ve seen affecting our business: electrification, refrigerant changes, and hybrid systems:

"Electrification is exciting in that it is driving us away from fossil fuels to cleaner heating and cooling technologies like heat
pumps. You see heat pump technology continue to gain share of the overall HVAC market. VRF is well positioned to take advantage of this.

While that is happening, the industry is still trying to manage the refrigerant changes that will be implemented over the next few years. The good news is that it will make our products more efficient while lowering the GWP impact on the environment as well.

Lastly, I’ve seen an increase in the use of hybrid systems, meaning a mixture of different components of traditional systems. The inverter compressor technology of VRF, for example, is being coupled with air handler units and hydronic systems to make both better."

Randy Roberts, vice president, sales and marketing, Rheem Air Conditioning Division

Producing millions of heating, cooling and water heating products across the world per year that consume energy, Rheem plays a very natural role in decarbonization. Decarbonization is not only driven by regulations, but also an
expectation of our customers. We have solutions that will support decarbonization while being cost and performance effective for our customers. Our investments in decarbonization technologies will continue to increase, and collaboration with key strategic partners will accelerate our learning. And since decarbonization goals are global in scope, we are well suited to engage all of Rheem to develop the right solutions for our customers and the planet.

Mike Mayberry, technician.

For me, it's continue on as normal. For a newer tech, it's endless opportunities for a hard worker. The company I work for is buried in work. We haven’t slowed down at all. Business in general is fantastic. A new trend in customer requests is updates and ETA’s. Customers are looking for better communication.

Getting equipment is the most pressing issue in the industry right now. Getting parts and equipment is really difficult.

Supply is a huge issue. Customers are looking to have systems fixed or replaced
and parts and equipment are in short supply. I’d like to see better tech support from manufacturers.

And of Course, the Products

In addition to the 2023 Innovation Award winning products (see sidebar) thousands of additional HVACR products will be on display at the Georgia World Congress Center. Among those companies who answered our call for entries: 

New Amana® brand S-series split system air conditioners and heat pumps merge the finest features and performance of ductless-style systems with the ability to connect to traditional ducted systems. Designed with a slim, small footprint, S-series require only 4” of clearance – ideal for zero-lot-line applications. Featuring high-performing inverter compressors, the variable-speed S-series delivers outstanding efficiencies quietly, up to 17.2 SEER2 and 8.5 HSPF2. A quiet mode enhances acoustical comfort, for more livable backyards. Flexible design and side discharge solve installation challenges for many projects, with the capability to mount on a pad or wall. Blue fin corrosion coating helps keep the coil clean. Intelligent defrost mode helps prevent frost/ice from building up in cold climates.

The Daikin Applied Pathfinder® — which, according to Daikin Applied, is the most efficient air-cooled screw chiller available has been upgraded to deliver greater energy savings in the same footprint. Plus, contractors can now benefit from factory-installed pump packages that help ease
installation requirements and time.

Pathfinder features industry-leading IPLVs capable of exceeding 22 EER, the Pathfinder is fully customizable to meet the size and performance needs of a broad range of applications. The chiller’s latest features include:

  • A new compressor with Daikin VVR technology that provides higher efficiency, especially in part-load conditions.
  • Pump packages for both packaged and free-cooling models that eliminate the need to size, source and install system pumps separately.
  • ECM motors with greater horsepower.

The next generation of sustainability, connectivity and flexibility for new and existing commercial applications from Daikin  is now reality with the VRV EMERION, all-electric heat recovery series from Daikin, the originator of variable refrigerant volume control. VRV EMERION delivers unmatched performance – up to 30.0 IEER and up to 30 percent more energy efficiency compared to standard VRF and previous VRV systems.

Innovative design helps return valuable space to building owners and tenants, making upgrading simpler while cutting installation costs. In wiring alone, the revamped lineup can reduce costs up to 34 percent. 

The hilmor Lineset Cleaner is useful when installing a new system, replacing an old system, or changing out refrigerants. It uses a pressurized
source to launch the carefully selected specialized foam puck into the lineset that effectively wipes the pipe clean of all contaminants and remaining refrigerants, making the job easier and reducing the time it takes.The hilmor Pocket Brake
reduces trips back to the fabrication shop. It provides a jobsite solution to scoring sheet metal or adding cross breaks into ductwork, making it the ultimate jobsite sheet metal tool.

Johnson Controls will demonstrate products and solutions that improve sustainability and optimize building performance aligned with pending U.S. government regulations and other building priorities. Johnson Controls will showcase a capacity expansion of the YORK CYK compound centrifugal water-to-water chiller/heat pump,  which utilizes a two-compressor design to operate beyond the temperature range of typical centrifugal chillers. 

A JCI residential product to see is the YORK® HMCG2 Side-Discharge AC unit, which hasa 40% smaller footprint than standard heat pump units, sources say. It is a compact and efficient cooling option that is ideal for higher-density areas with less installation space, such as multifamily apartments and zero-lot-line neighbourhoods. Available in a range of 2-5-ton models, HMCG2 air conditioners can reach efficiency levels up to 18.5 SEER2. B1617


Parker ZoomLock refrigerant fittings, designed for the air conditioning and refrigeration markets, allow contractors to make leak-free connections in
seconds. No brazing torch is needed. Easily connect copper piping to create a perfect, secure seal with more flexibility in where and when you can work by eliminating oxygen-acetylene torches and flame concerns. Plus, there's no need to nitrogen-purge the lines. Parker was the first to launch a flame-free refrigerant fitting and provided advanced products for the HVACR contractor. They now have ZoomLock MAX, Press-to-Connect, and ZoomLock PUSH Push-to-Connect refrigerant fittings.ZoomLock MAX, rated up to 700 psi, comes in hermetically sealed
packaging; the hard, robust copper fittings are debris-free and ready for installation, assuring the contractor a clean system.   

The small and compact design of Sporlan's Type NX Thermostatic Expansion Valves makes this product ideal for foodservice and food retail applications such as display cases, ice machines, frozen drink dispensers, and commercial kitchen refrigerators and freezers.  

The Sporlan Cold Room Controller (CRC) provides highly efficient control for remote and self-contained refrigerated cold rooms.          


The Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC US (METUS) will highlight innovations in space conditioning and water heating from the leaders in ductless and ducted mini-split and Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) heat-pump and air-conditioning systems.

The new Hybrid VRF™ heat recovery zoning system is the world’s only two-pipe system with the ability to simultaneously heat and cool using water, not refrigerant, in occupied spaces. Also on display will be the Heat2O® Heat Pump Water Heater, designed to produce high-volume domestic hot water for commercial facilities in any climate. C6805

At booth B3261, NIBCO will feature five products:

  • New LD 7000 butterfly valves
  • New Webstone® Pro-Pal® multi-port transition tees
  • 585HP high-performance ball valves – offering ease of installation and highest quality standards
  • PressACR® fittings – a joining method designed for use in copper tube systems for air conditioning and refrigeration applications
  • Wrot Racer® Push Fittings – premium copper push fittings.


 Ritchie Engineering Company, Inc., a leader in service tools for HVACR professionals and manufacturer of YELLOW JACKET® products, will introduce combustion analyzers CA502 and CA502P.

Sources tell us the combustion analyzer CA502 is a major entry for heating systems tools by YELLOW JACKET®. An essential tool, the Combustion Analyzer CA502
ensures the safety, efficiency, and proper operation of residential and light commercial heating appliances.

The CA502 Combustion Analyzer combines three key measurements into one analyzer: Ambient CO Monitor, Manometer and Combustion Analyzer.         


RectorSeal LLC. has announced the availability of Coil-Cure Liquid, a powerful disinfectant that kills up to 99.9% of bacteria and viruses including coronavirus.

Coil-Cure Liquid protects HVAC coils, drain pans, and non-porous surfaces when properly applied. Coil-Cure has been added to the EPA list N as an EPA-registered disinfectant with emerging viral pathogens and human coronavirus claims for use against Covid 19 (SARS-CoV-2).         


The Ascend® air-water heat pump Model ACX from Trane® (140-230 tons cooling, 1500-2500 MBh heating) – a perfect fit for meeting sustainability and efficiency targets for heating or cooling from one electric source.  The ACX’s built-in heat pump advances building electrification by reducing or eliminating gas-fired boilers – and shifting HVAC system energy use to utility grids increasingly powered by renewable energy resources.


Trane – by Trane Technologies in November announced updates to its  Precedent®, Odyssey™, and Foundation® lines of HVAC systems that help customers with buildings of all sizes embrace electrification and decarbonization.

The company also released version five of its essential system design software, TRACE® 3D Plus, with new capabilities engineers can use to design and validate projects with confidence and clarity.

Trane has released new standard and high-efficiency Precedent heat pumps in 12.5- to 25-ton capacities. The Precedent line meets the U.S. Department of
Energy (DOE) 2023 energy efficiency standards. All next-generation units released to date are now available in a high-efficiency model that exceeds those standards by 25% or more.     

Sources say that when rooftop installation isn’t an option, a Trane Odyssey split system is a versatile choice that delivers up-to-date energy efficiency, meeting DOE 2023 standards. Split systems provide the same high-performance heating and cooling of a packaged rooftop system but allow engineers and contractors to work around unique building designs such as glass ceilings or pitched roofs or code and service limitations. The Odyssey’s exceptional energy efficiency is realized by its Symbio® 700 controller, now standard, and a new multi-speed air handler that can be configured for two-stage or single-zone VAV or Variable Volume Zone Temperature (VVZT). 

About the Author

Terence McIver | Senior vice president, human resources

Billy Hamilton isSenior Vice President of Human Resources for Motion. He has over 30 years of experience in human resources with companies such as Overhead Door Corporation and Lockheed Martin. He is passionate about talent management and data analytics. Find Motion at