In the picturesque town of Fort Smith, Arkansas, homeowners face an ongoing predicament -- an increasingly humid climate that often leaves residents feeling sticky and uncomfortable. A local HVAC contractor company, Lowder Brothers Heating and Air, LLC, led by owner Justin Lowder, and his brother Heath, is dedicated to providing superior heating and cooling solutions since its inception in 2008. In recent years, many homeowners have called upon the Lowder Brothers to help with the challenges the hot, humid climate presents.
One major issue has continued to surface for local homeowners — how to reduce the discomfort caused by excessive heat and humidity paired with a hesitancy to alter existing ductwork. For many, updating ductwork is costly and not a feasible option, especially as they seek more efficient and cost-effective alternatives.
Recognizing the need for a comprehensive solution that would combat Fort Smith’s humid climate, the Lowder Brothers experienced success installing advanced inverter driven, variable speed units, such as the Rheem® Endeavor Line Prestige Series iM Heat Pumps (RP18AZ) and the Rheem® Endeavor Line Prestige Series iM Air Conditioners (RA18AZ).
"The multi-stage functionality of the system, found in the Rheem units addressed the humidity challenges head-on,” Lowder explains. “I also noticed, a lot of customers in the area are building outdoor spaces and patios, and for those homeowners, the swept wing fan technology brings quieter operation and improved unit acoustics, so they don’t have to worry about noise when they’re entertaining guests or want to enjoy a quiet evening outside.”
By intelligently adjusting cooling capacity based on specific environmental requirements, the multi-stage operation optimizes the dehumidification processes. The inverter-driven, variable speed technology allows precise control over the cooling operation, ensuring efficient and effective moisture removal.
One homeowner, who had a home plagued by humidity issues, found solace in her new air conditioning system installed by Lowder. Her child, battling an autoimmune disease, often faced difficulty breathing. With the installation of the multistage units, the child experienced a remarkable improvement in respiratory health. The crisp, dehumidified air the system offered provided a newfound sense of relief and comfort, eliminating her need for added humidifiers. The technology-enabled cooling operates between 40% and 100% of capacity (with overdrive capability up to 115% in extreme conditions) to continuously meet changing seasonal needs.
During the installation process, contractors often encounter challenges such as access to installation sites, complex ductwork modifications, electrical wiring complications and compatibility issues with existing HVAC systems. Lowder found the multi-stage units provided an easy-to-install solution due to the physical dimensions of the equipment. The system's compact design eliminated the need for extensive modifications, such as removing door frames, and simplified the installation process. The Lowder Brothers team benefitted from using the PlusOne® Expanded Valve Space that provided easier access and a minimum working area of 27-square inches.
Every homeowner that Justin and his team worked with made it clear that serviceability and economic viability was of utmost importance to them. The Rheem EcoNet® smart thermostat they installed was easy-to-use and Wi-Fi-enabled making it a snap for the homeowner to monitor and control the temperature at home and on-the-go. The Bluetooth® enabled Contractor App proved to be a time-saving asset for Lowder and his team of installers, with only a four-wire hookup required for the heat pump unit and the platform provides Lowder with feedback on the unit.
In addition to providing a service to his community and customers, Lowder’s customer-first approach has helped grow his business exponentially over the years. After graduating from Kiamichi Technology Centers, a trade school in the area, Lowder started his business in 2008. Soon after his brother Heath joined him, and they operated out of a small shop behind Justin’s home. Today, Lowder Brothers has 36 employees and 19 trucks and operate out of a new facility in Pocola, Oklahoma, just over the state-line from Fort Smith. They also have a full sheet metal fabrication shop and work on every type of job, from residential to new construction to commercial projects.
Few people are as passionate as Lowder, who finds true purpose in bringing functionality and comfort to his customers’ homes. Although Lowder’s job is delivering HVAC solutions, he truly enjoys providing his community and customers with a breath of fresh, cool and crisp air—especially those who had been struggling with uncomfortable indoor conditions.