EXPO EXTRAVAGANZA

Expo ExtravaganaAeroseal Wins Editor’s Choice Award At This Year’s GreenBuild Conference & Expo

Now that it’s over, we can pretty much make it official – GreenBuild 2014 was this year’s big event for any professional interested in sustainable building technology or just about anything else related to green building. This year’s expo not only marked a turning point for Aeroseal but also turned out to be an opportunity to win yet another “Best Of Show” award for its energy-saving duct sealing solution.

More than 23,000 attendees gathered at the conference, held this year in New Orleans, giving more than 750 suppliers and top manufacturers a chance to show off the latest green equipment, products and technology available in today’s market. For Aeroseal, the show marked a new chapter in the company’s catapulting success.

“For the first time in Aeroseal’s history, the overwhelming number of people visiting our booth actually came seeking us out,” said Aeroseal’s Bobby Seals. “For the past several years, we’ve been attending shows like this and spending most of our time explaining our technology to passerbys – but not this time. Instead, our booth was filled throughout the three-day event with engineers, specifiers and other building professionals that had already heard about aeroseal. This time they came with specific questions in mind – often about how aeroseal could be applied to existing projects on which they were working.”

Building professionals weren’t the only ones taking notice of the aeroseal technology during the show. Editors of US Building Review magazine, one of show’s key sponsors, found the potential energy-saving benefits of aeroseal so compelling, that they gave it their Editor’s Choice award. Aeroseal was featured on the cover of the magazine’s latest issue and was declared BEST OF SHOW by the publication.

“The potential impact that Aeroseal technology could have on energy savings is estimated by the D.O.E. to be in the billions of dollars annually,” said US Builders Review’s Editorial Director, Ian Nichols. “Of the hundreds of products and technologies represented at this year’s Greenbuild, we felt that none were more deserving of this award than Aeroseal.”

Aside from the engineers and contractors who had the Aeroseal booth on their short list of “must see” attractions, a large percentage of visitors included building owners and facility managers. There were a particularly noticeable number of hospital and laboratory administrators among the crowd as well.

“Most any facility that employs an exhaust hood to evacuate airborne contaminants is dealing with new Federal USP 797 mandate,” said Seals. “The new regulation is designed to cut down on health risks associated with drug manufacturing and includes, among other things, tighter guidelines regarding adequate exhaust. Aeroseal has proven to be an absolute ideal solution for facilities that are finding their current ventilation systems inadequate to meet these new regulations.”

Aeroseal has proven to be a major cost and time saver for administrators and contractors at Condell Hospital, UCSF Medical Center at Mt. Zion and other facilities where meeting USP 797 specifications became an issue.

“As the word spreads from colleague to colleague, anecdotes about aeroseal used successfully to seal ventilation leaks has quickly raised professional awareness of the technology,” said Seals. “This year’s GreenBuild reflected that growing awareness.”

To learn where you can see a demo of aeroseal technology in action or to find out where Aeroseal will be exhibiting next, visit http://www.aeroseal.com/news-events/events.php.

ON THE JOB

On The JobUniversity of Miami Finds Aeroseal Ideal For Getting Laboratory Exhaust Hoods Up To Code

The 50-year-old Cox Science Building on the University of Miami campus is typically a hotbed of activity. During a typical school semester, hundreds of students and faculty members utilize the facility to attend lectures, take classes and conduct experiments within one of the building’s many laboratories. A recent evaluation by the university’s environmental health and safety (EHS) group determined that many of the dozens of exhaust hoods located throughout the four-floor building were simply not providing enough exhaust to sufficiently and safely remove potentially harmful airborne contaminants used during experimentation. A closer look at the problem found that, in most cases, the poor exhaust was due to leaks in the ductwork connecting the hoods to large exhaust fans located on the building’s rooftop.

“The problem was pretty clear,” said Gary Tarbe, the senior project manager for the university’s facilities, design and construction department. “We smoke tested several of the units and could see that leaks were running throughout the ducts. Old dried tape was clearly visible on the exposed ductwork, and the risers hidden behind the walls were undoubtedly leaking as well.”

Testing of each exhaust hood underscored the problem.

“We needed to achieve a face velocity of 99 feet per minute for each hood,” said Tarbe. We weren’t even close.”

At the end of the evaluation, some of the hoods were identified for replacement. About 20 exhaust hood systems, located in laboratories throughout the building, were marked for repair. Mike Lorion and his crew at Airmax were called in to evaluate the problem and make recommendations for a fix.

“The 20 or so exhaust hoods in question were connected to nine separate risers that lead to nine different rooftop exhaust fans,” said Lorion. “Most of the leaks were located in areas that were simply impossible to get to without major demolition. The rest of the ductwork was intertwined with other ducts, electrical conduits and piping, making access almost impossible. It was clear to us that there was only one viable solution – sealing the leaks from the inside with aeroseal.”

Lorion explained to others on the project exactly how aeroseal worked. The university engineers had heard about the technology, and after conferring with colleagues, they agreed it was really the only sensible option for repairing the leaks. With a “thumbs up” given by the engineers and University administrators, the Airmax crew arrived with their equipment and began the process of sealing the leaks in the nine risers and connecting ductwork.

“We would typically access each ventilation shaft by removing the rooftop fan and attaching the aeroseal delivery tube to the exposed duct,” said Lorion. “In this case, many of the fans were simply too old to remove without causing further damage, so we found it best to use the rooftop access when convenient and connect the aeroseal equipment to the rest of the shafts via temporary access points created in the ductwork located in the mechanical room.”

Airmax identified each of the nine risers branching out to the 20 or so exhaust hoods and began the sealing process on each.

“I’m fascinated by the type of innovative technology that aeroseal represents,” said Tarbe, “so I was sure to observe the entire process. It was great to watch the computer monitor as aeroseal was injected into the ductwork and the graph showing the amount of leakage quickly decline.”

During the sealing, several major gaps in the ductwork were discovered and repaired by hand. The entire sealing process took about two weeks to complete. In the end, the reports generated by the aeroseal system said it all.

“Before aeroseal, the nine risers together exhibited a leakage rate of well of 1,000 CFM,” Said Lorion. “After the sealing process was completed, that leakage rate dropped to around 215 CFM – more than an 80% reduction.

“We had our TAB guy come in and certify each of the exhaust hoods,” said Tarbe. “Each now passed with flying colors. Everyone was really pleased with the results, and quite honestly, if it weren’t for aeroseal, I can’t imagine how we would have solved this issue.”

INDUSTRY UPDATE

Industry UpdateAll Indicators Point Upward As HVAC Industry Heads Towards A New Year

With the beginning of a new year just around the corner, most HVAC businesses are feeling optimistic, and the opportunity for revenue growth seems to be in reach. In fact, a number of industry indicators show that HVAC companies of all sizes have experienced a slow but steady increase in business since the great recession first began to affect the industry more than five years ago.

One strong indicator worth noting is the Contractor Comfort Index (CCI) maintained by The Indoor Environment & Energy Efficiency Association (ACCA). Each month ACCA surveys contractors, gathering information about new business prospects, current business activity, hiring expectations and other data that reflect industry experience and attitudes. A CCI of 50 or above indicates anticipated growth.

ACCA announced in late October that its CCI for August 2014 was 76, well above the positive bar for success and 10 points higher than it was for the same time last year. In fact, the CCI for most months of this year indicate that contractors are feeling more optimistic about the potential for short-term growth than they have for several years. This past May, the CCI hit its all time peak with a ranking of 86.

Another significant indicator of market attitudes comes from Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI), an industry organization that tracks equipment sales. HARDI recently reported a 10.1% increase in sales growth in June and an overall annual growth of 6.6% during the first half of 2014.

It’s important to note that while the industry seems to be heading in the right direction, most shops are still cautious.  Preparing to meet new customer demands and adding new competitive services are often trumping new employee hires.
“We’ve found that HVAC shops are now looking to prepare for the future,” said Comfort Institute’s Brendan Reid. “With an optimistic forecast and slow but steady growth, now is the time to gain the added skills needed to set your business apart from the competition. In many cases, this means adding HVAC services that address the growing demand for home performance expertise.”

Help From The Government

Helping drive demand for a full litany of energy-conservation services, state and local lawmakers across the U.S. continue to pass and implement legislation designed to save energy. According to a recent report published by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), states as a whole, continue to ramp up their commitments to energy efficiency.

Findings reported in the 8th edition of the State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, released in late October, show that government-enacted electricity efficiency programs saved the U.S. approximately 24.4 million megawatt-hours (MWh) in 2013 – a 7% increase over 2011. Gas savings for that same time period is estimated at 276 million therms (MMTherms) – an increase of about 19%.

The report also provided a ranking of the most energy-efficient states in the nation. 2014 analysis found that Massachusetts, once again, beat second-place California for the honor. This is the fourth year in a row that Massachusetts took first place in this regard.  Other top energy-efficient states included Rhode Island, Vermont and Oregon (all tied for #3), Connecticut (#6) New York (#7) Washington (#8), Maryland (#9) and Minnesota (#10).

The bottom ranked states included North Dakota, Wyoming, South Dakota, Mississippi and Alaska.

Also included in the report were findings that Arkansas, the District of Columbia, Kentucky and Wisconsin are the four most improved energy-efficient states for 2014. Arkansas’s progress was due, for the most part, to new electric efficiency programs that helped the state triple its electricity savings. Kentucky’s success is attributed to its adoption of a more efficient commercial building energy code.

In The News

In The NewsAeroseal Buzz Spreads With Help From Several New Feature Articles

Aeroseal may not be getting as much media attention these days as say, Kim Kardashian, but we’re working on closing the gap. This past month alone, Aeroseal was featured in several industry publications, including a cover story and a great review of a commercial project success.

First, check out the latest issue of Commercial Construction & Renovation magazine. The glossy industry publication includes a feature article on how Aeroseal helped turn an energy-conservation skeptic into a true believer. You might remember our reporting earlier about the work done at the Capitol Plaza hotel in Frankfort, Kentucky. The feature piece in CCR revisits the story and includes some added information about how Aeroseal was used to seal the convention hotel’s leaky ductwork and is now saving the building owners about $24,000 a year in reduced energy costs.

Aeroseal was also highlighted in a recent front-page article in ACHR NEWS that reviewed best practices for duct sealing. The piece, entitled, “Leaky Ductwork Continues To Drain System Efficiency,” was published in the October 20th issue of the publication. Along with information about tape and mastic considerations, the feature incorporated several nice photos of aeroseal at work, including a great before and after shot illustrating how the aeroseal sealant collects mainly at the leakage site, leaving the interior walls of the ductwork relatively sealant free.

In case you’ve been stuck working inside a duct system for the past couple of weeks, you might not know about the big news regarding Aeroseal’s recent acquisition of The Comfort Institute. Otherwise the news would have been hard to miss with the announcement being headlined in most every major industry news outlet – from The NEWS to HVAC Insider, NADCA’s Ducttales, and HPAC magazine. When the leading organization for home performance training partners with a company that licenses the biggest breakthrough technology in energy-savings, it’s no wonder that the industry takes note.

And speaking of taking note, hot on the heels of Aeroseal’s recent acceptance of the prestigious Dealer Design Award from ACHR NEWS, our duct sealing technology was just awarded BEST OF SHOW by the editors of US Building Review magazine. To highlight their editor’s choice, the publication’s latest issue features a cover story on Aeroseal that includes a nice review of the technology and an overview of how this innovation in duct sealing is impacting both residential and commercial building practices.

“It’s hard to ignore a technology that is having such an impact on an industry,” said Aeroseal’s Amit Gupta, “The recent influx in coverage is directly related to the buzz being created by the success of our dealers and the stories being shared by engineers, building owners and specifiers out in the field.”

AEROSEAL IN ACTION

Aeroseal_in_ActionA Capitol Idea

Heath Allbaugh knows it’s all about making connections. He has been demonstrating how easily and effectively Aeroseal works for engineering firms, government agencies, utility companies and just about anyone else in the Tallahassee, Florida area that might be involved in duct sealing. And it’s working…

When he heard that the new Capitol Building in downtown Tallahassee was about to undergo retrofitting, including upgrades to the building’s bathroom exhaust system, he knew who to call.

“Not too long ago, I gave an Aeroseal demo to H2Engineering, the engineers of record on the Capitol building project,” said Heath, a certified mechanical contractor and then with TruSeal of Florida. They were impressed with the technology when they first saw it and I knew it would offer benefits on this particular project. So I called my contacts at the firm and said this is a job for Aeroseal.”

The initial retrofit project included upgrading over a dozen bathrooms located on various levels of the 22-story building. As part of the upgrade, the aging fans driving the individual exhaust systems were being replaced with new high-efficiency fans. In addition, each exhaust duct shaft would have to be sealed.

“The building was built in the late seventies and, as it turns out, none of the exhaust shafts had ever been sealed,” said Jeremy Parker, Parker Services, the mechanical contractors on the project. “If for no other reason, the ducts would have to be sealed just to meet code requirements. Of course, we all knew it would have a significant impact on the efficiency of the exhaust systems as well.”

Given their familiarity with Aeroseal, and the reminder call from Heath, H2Engineering was sure to specify that, when Parker Services went looking for a duct sealing subcontractor, that they included Aeroseal in the bidding process. That’s all it took. Given Aeroseal’s unique “from-the-inside” approach to duct sealing, the innovative technology offered several clear advantages over traditional sealing methods – a lower cost being just one of them.

“The reason we went with Aeroseal is that it is so much easier to apply in an existing building,” said Dan Henderson, H2Engineering. “Unlike traditional manual sealing, we did not have to remove the ceiling tiles, unwrap and rewrap insulation or deal with other obstacles. It was all done quickly and without interruption to the rest of the building.”

And of course, there was the cost. Heath and his crew of one – were able to complete the initial portion of the project – 9 of the original 13 duct systems – over a single weekend. In each case, the Aeroseal equipment was connected to the ductwork via temporary access points in the portion of the ducts located inside the bathrooms.  None of the hidden ductwork running outside the bathrooms and into the Capitol’s corridors needed to be disturbed.  No unwrapping and rewrapping of insulation was required. No walls needed replastering.

“We also didn’t need to hire a third party contractor to verify the results when the sealing work was completed,” said Jeremy. “Since post testing is part of the normal Aeroseal process, we were able to save time and money on this aspect as well.”

Aeroseal’s computer-generated report provided the results: total initial leakage was 592 CFM. Post Aeroseal leakage is 97 CFM – an 84% reduction. What was originally the equivalent of a 113 square inch hole was reduced to one just 18 square inches. Needless to say, everyone was happy…and the building code requirements were met and documented.

“We have several more bathrooms to complete once the project is ready for us,” said Heath. “Then I expect this to be just the beginning. The demos I gave to the engineers led to this initial project and that allowed me to gain visibility with others – including the Department of Management Services, who are in charge of meeting Obama’s mandate for energy efficiency throughout all of the state’s local and federal government buildings. Clearly, with Aeroseal, opportunities abound.”

AND THE WINNERS ARE…

and_the_winner_4Aeroseal Gives Away A New Harley, iPads And More

What better way to close out a stellar Summer for Aeroseal than to congratulate several winners of recent Aeroseal contests and get ready for a busy winter season ahead.

First, we want to thank all our dealers for helping make the past three months the busiest seal months in Aeroseal history. As word spreads, and neighbors talk and engineers share and the media covers this game changing technology, the demand for Aeroseal duct sealing just continues to grow.

The past few months have been particularly fun to watch as more than 70 dealers actively participated in the Aeroseal Summer Seal Challenge/Lucky 7 contest. Everyone who entered seal jobs had a chance to win a new Harley Davidson motorcycle or one of six new iPads. Each seal completed was good for one entry in the contest. The more seals, the more entries, and the greater the chance of having one of your entries picked in the final random drawing.

For the record keepers, there were well over 1,100 entries by contest closing time – as many as 50 or more by several particularly industrious dealerships.

The top achievers included:

  • One Hour Air, Niceville
  • Attic Experts of AZ
  • Aeroseal of Indiana
  • Arizona Aeroseal
  • Ener-Tech
  • Atlantic Duct Cleaning

In the end, the winning entry for the Harley, went to Adam Kaplan, the younger half of the father/son team – at Ener-Tech. Adam actually had a whopping 85 seals entered into the drawing.

“Adam already wanted a Harley, so this contest was the perfect sales incentive for him,” said Mike Kaplan.

Adam’s name was drawn during an Internet broadcast held live this past October 1st from the huge showroom floor of Buckeye Harley Davidson in Dayton, Ohio.

Ener-Tech hooked up with Aeroseal about a year ago. The company had been helping the residents of Clark County, Nevada save on energy for about seven years before adding duct sealing to its services, which continues to focus heavily on solar energy solutions. Ener-Tech was one of the first businesses to own a HomeSeal machine and they have since kept busy, averaging about twenty seals per month.

“I feel we are so successful in what we do at Ener-Tech because we really enjoy helping people become more green and helping them save money on their utility bills,” said Adam. “We take pride in helping people conserve energy and money.”

And while you can’t ride an iPad to work, you can certainly find a lot of other great uses for one – especially if they are loaded full of ready-to-use Aeroseal marketing materials. Congratulations to our six iPad winners including:

  • Tom Keys, Atlantic Duct Cleaning
  • Chad Malo, One Hour Air
  • Mike Apsinwall, Attic Experts of AZ
  • Tim McKenzie, Arizona Aeroseal
  • Mike Allred, Convenient Heating and Cooling Inc.
  • Andrew Brueggeman, Aeroseal of Colorado

Want more? Stay tuned. I have a sneaking suspicion that there are more contests and more winners in Aeroseal’s future

PROFESSIONAL INSIGHTS

Professional_InsightsGold Medal Service Shares Secrets To Business Growth

If you knew someone that grew their home contracting company into a $23 million annual business in less than ten years, you’d want to know their secrets, wouldn’t you?

So did about 150 attendees at this past Comfortech Expo, who attended Training Your Team To Convert Sales, a presentation given by super-entrepreneur Mike Agugliaro, owner of Gold Medal Service of New Brunswick, New Jersey, and a new Aeroseal dealer.  Mike and his partner, Rob Zadotti, began Gold Medal shortly after Mike graduated from a vocational school in 1988. After years of running a respectable business, the two decided they wanted more- and got serious about taking things to the next level. In about ten years, they had honed in on fundamental business practices that made all the difference.

“Even in a poor economy, we were able to turn Gold Medal into a multimillion-dollar business with more than 130 employees and a hundred-vehicle fleet of trucks,” said Agugliaro.  “Today, the business basically runs itself.”

With the enormous success of Gold Medal, Mike was running into a growing number of other company owners asking for business advice. As a result, he launched ServiceKey, a new enterprise dedicated exclusively to consulting and training other service professionals. Today, Mike is an in-demand speaker and author of the soon-to-be-released book The Secrets of Business Mastery: Build Wealth, Freedom, And Market Domination For Your Service Business In Twelve Months or Less. At last month’s Comfortech, Mike shared some of the principal lessons included in ServiceKey workshops and found in his upcoming book.

“Most service businesses today are focused almost exclusively on booking service calls,” said Agugliaro, “but it’s much more than that. To build your business it’s important that you consider what needs to happen before, during, and after your initial contact with the customer.”

According to Mike, the “before” considerations include all the things that need to happen before the service tech even arrives at the house.

“A successful service business must think more like they do at Disney World,” said Mike. “When you call and book a vacation, you already have expectations and there is excitement about your pending experience. And while fixing a furnace isn’t nearly as fun as a trip to Disney World, as a service provider, your job is to create enthusiastic expectations. You need to give customers the impression that you are their knight in shinning armor and you are coming to save the day.”

According to Mike, this means setting expectations that you will be doing more than simply fixing the furnace. You will, for instance, also be empowering them with information that will allow them to save money, and make their home more comfortable and healthier than ever before.

There are opportunities for increased success during the service call as well. Mike points out that new customers are often reluctant to bring strangers into their home. The faster you can become a “friend” rather than a “stranger,” the better.

“We teach the service tech to call on the way to the home,” said Mike. “He might, for example, explain that he was stopping off at the donut shop before arriving for his scheduled appointment, and that he was wondering if the homeowner would prefer a Boston cream or jelly filled donut.  Right away, you begin to build rapport. You are more than just a stranger.”

Then after the appointment, Mike teaches it’s important to effectively follow up with the customer.

“It’s like getting married,” said Agugliaro. “You don’t pay lots of attention during the courtship and then ignore your wife after exchanging vows. A healthy relationship requires ongoing attention.”

Mike likes to follow up service calls with an automated phone survey. This, he says, is better than having someone call from the office.

“Most people prefer to remain polite,” said Mike. “If someone gets a call from a friendly employee asking about the homeowner’s experience, chances are good that they will say positive things, no matter what. But if the homeowner is answering a multiple choice survey given by a recording, he or she is much more likely to give honest, usable feedback.”

When sales are mediocre, it’s usually not a sales process that is broke, but a human being process that is broken,” added Agugliaro. “If you are delivering amazing service and provide customers with all the information they need to buy, you don’t need some special sales closing magic to get the business. They will buy.”

When it comes to building customer loyalty, Mike recommends the following:

Stage 1: When you are looking to serve a customer, fix the immediate needs first. Once you’ve proved your value with the original project you can discuss other possible concerns.

Stage 2: One you fix the initial problem, engage in conversation that may reveal other concerns.

Stage 3: Thank them for being a new friend. This is the time to explain other services you offer. This is an educational opportunity – not a sales pitch.

Mike is also always looking out for what he calls the X Factor; the products or services that will allow his business to stand out from the competition. Recently, he added Aeroseal duct sealing to the services offered by Gold Medal.

“I first saw Aeroseal demonstrated on a television program and then I began to hear about it from business associates,” said Mike. “I did some research and came to the conclusion that adding Aeroseal was a no-brainer. I told my partner that we should do it now – It’s time.”

For Mike and Gold Medal, Aeroseal’s primary attraction was its ability to address issues related to indoor air quality. While most professionals in the industry continue to focus on the technical side of the business, Mike believes a holistic approach makes more sense.

“The number one thing that affects all aspects of your life is your health,” explained Agugliaro. In our area, there is growing awareness of indoor air quality and the impact it can have on your family’s health. We just started marketing Aeroseal services and already have several jobs lined up – all addressing IAQ. I know Aeroseal will be a winner for us.”

Mike’s new book is due out in early 2015. You can be one of the first to get a copy and to learn more about his consulting services by visiting secretsofbusinessmastery.com. You can also follow him on LinkedIn.

INSIDER SCOOP

Insider_ScoopAeroseal Names New National Director of Residential Sales

The acquisition of Comfort Institute isn’t the only big news around Aeroseal headquarters this last couple of weeks…

If you’ve been around the HVAC industry for any length of time, chances are pretty good that you know – and maybe have even shaken hands with — Scott Mueller. Well, the next time you see him, give him a pat on the back and a congratulatory greeting as well. Scott has just been named Aeroseal’s new national sales director for the residential market…and that’s good news for anyone thinking about joining Aeroseal, and even better for those already on the team.

Scott has more than 20 years of experience within the HVAC industry, most recently as regional sales director at Goodman Manufacturing Company, a leading supplier of heating, ventilation and air conditioning products. Prior to that, he served as brand manager for the Carrier Corporation. In his new position, Scott will oversee all U.S. residential sales operations as well as provide oversight to Aeroseal’s outside sales reps in the U.S. and Canada residential market.

Along with Scott coming on board, one of Aeroseal’s guiding lights was bumped upstairs as well. Neal Walsh was just named to the newly created position of Senior Vice President of Strategy and Commercial Market Sales. The commercial-market sales part is pretty obvious, and SVP of strategy seems to indicate that news such as the Comfort Institute acquisition is just the beginning of big plans for Aeroseal. I think it’s safe to say that the company is committed to the home performance market and is determined to be the industry’s one source for home performance contracting equipment, training and support. Stay tuned to the Aeroseal Insider for the latest updates as they happen.

INDUSTRY HEADLINES

Industry_HeadlinesAeroseal Acquires Comfort Institute To Create World Headquarters For Everything HPC

Just in case you’ve had your head stuck inside a duct system project for the past two weeks, let me share with you the major headline that has the entire industry abuzz…Aeroseal just acquired Comfort Institute (CI). Now, the sole licensee of an industry-changing duct sealing technology has joined forces with the premier organization dedicated to the success of home performance contractors.

The deal went down during the last week of August, and CI members were notified along with Aeroseal dealers by email (followed by snail mail) on the 25th. ACHR NEWS interviewed both company leaders the following day, posted on their website later that afternoon, and the word has been spreading like a California wildfire ever since.

From what I can tell from caller reaction, response from the news so far has been quite positive. CI members like the idea that the merger will infuse Comfort Institute with fresh resources that will allow the organization to take their training and support services to new heights. In fact, the new CI training schedule, which will be released later this month, will include a variety of regionally located classes as well as those typically held at a single CI facility. Also on the horizon for the immediate term is improved CI materials and support.

The merger was also well received on the Aeroseal side of the fence. Dealers reacted positively to the potential for increased exposure and special access to a wide variety of home performance-related materials, training and equipment. And while the new partnership doesn’t require either Aeroseal dealers or CI members to make any new investments in the other organization’s offerings, it does open up huge new opportunities for both parties.

“I can attribute a large part of our ongoing success to the combination of our Aeroseal dealership and our CI Membership,” said Steve Schmidt, President of Frederick Air Inc., Frederick, MD, and national board member of ACCA.  “I could not be more excited for the industry that these two organizations have officially joined forces. No doubt, greater contractor success and remarkable customer satisfaction is on the horizon!”

“Most experts agree that our industry is at a crossroads,” said Aeroseal CEO and President Amit Gupta. “The days where business growth based simply on selling heating and cooling equipment are fast making way to a new paradigm where a whole-house approach to home performance is taking center stage. HVAC professionals are now being asked to address the broader issues related to home comfort, IAQ and high utility bills. It’s expertise in these areas that is providing the competitive edge, and it’s what is driving today’s consumer demands.”

Under the merger, Comfort Institute will continue to exist as Comfort Institute, now a business unit of Aeroseal LLC. Several key CI personnel will remain in their current positions, including Brendan Reid and Ken Summers at the helm. The CI facilities and warehouse have moved to Centerville, Ohio.

“This merger marks a major step in Aeroseal’s vision of becoming a powerhouse in what is surely the future of HVAC,” said Gupta. “It sets us up to grow our offering in home performance contracting to become the industry’s one source for HPC equipment, training and support.”

“The joining of forces couldn’t be a more natural, mutually beneficial move,” said CI’s Brendan Reid. “Duct sealing is typically the single most effective thing homeowners can do to increase home performance and Aeroseal technology is really the only viable means to effectively achieve quality duct sealing results. Pair that type of mission-critical technology together with the industry’s most comprehensive, up-to-date training and support, and you have an organization that is offering unparalleled value for contractor success.”

Have questions about the acquisition? Want to know more about Aeroseal dealerships or CI offerings? We’ve scheduled a special webinar that will answer all your questions and more. The event is scheduled for Tudesday, November 11 at 1:30 pm EST. Click Here To Register.

AEROSEAL IN ACTION

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAntelope Hills Country Club Scores Hole In One With Aeroseal

Talk about building momentum for success! For Bryce Cox over at Arrowseal of Prescott, Arizona, it began when he invested a bit of time and effort aerosealing the private homes of several city facility managers. He figured if he could prove to these directors how effective the duct sealing technology was in reducing energy savings in their own homes, they would be more likely to understand what it could do to save the city money as well.

It worked! The team at Arrowseal sealed the ductwork of several older homes suffering from both high energy bills and spotty heating and cooling. The results made instant Aeroseal believers of the homeowners, and that led to a pilot project for the city.

“Making the jump from private homes to commercial buildings was still a bit of a leap of concept,” said Bryce, “so we were asked to complete a trial run, sealing a small one-system office complex and then a fire station. In both cases we were able to show the city officials immediate and substantial savings. The undisputable results just led to an even bigger project.”

In January of this year, Bruce and his Arrowseal team were called in to work on a golf course facility run by the City of Prescott. The Antelope Hills Municipal Country Club includes a clubhouse, restaurant, bar and pro shop, all under one roof. The city was about to replace the facility’s six HVAC roof units with new equipment, and they wanted Arrowseal to ensure the ductwork was up to snuff as well. Energy costs for operating the country club were running around $5,000 to $6,000 a month and the city was hoping that, with the new upgraded systems and aerosealed ductwork, they could reduce that cost.

To understand the scope of the project, Bruce and his team came down to the clubhouse and took leakage readings before the new HVAC units were installed. With an overall leakage rate of around 550 CFM, Bryce knew that Aeroseal could make a significant difference.

What he didn’t know was that when he came back to retest the systems after the new installations were completed, the leakage rate would be even higher – closer to 900 CFM.

“Even though they replaced the six old systems with new energy-efficient units, the new ductwork and the connections between the ductwork and the new systems caused more leaks than the original system,” said Bryce. “Whatever efficiency they may have gotten from upgrading units was being lost through leaks in the ductwork.”

Step one for Arrowseal was to manually seal the connections between the ducts and the HVAC units. Bryce estimates that this alone reduced leakage by 100 CFM. Now it was up to Aeroseal to make it all worthwhile.

It took the Arrowseal team just two days to seal the supply and returns of the six individual systems.  Calculations showed a total pre-aeroseal (post manual sealing) leakage rate of 1,072 CFM. Aerosealing instantly brought that down to 79 CFM – a reduction of around 92%.

“Overall, we recovered almost 1,000 CFM of treated air – nearly 3 tons. That is the equivalent of saving the energy generated by one of the entire systems,” said Bryce.

The city estimates they are now saving an average of $2,000 per month – and as much as $4,000 per month during the hottest and coldest months – just from Aeroseal alone.

“The savings from Aeroseal will quickly pay for any costs of the sealing process and then begin to pay for the six systems,” said Bryce. “Even with their higher efficiency, the new HVAC units would never have saved enough in energy to pay for themselves on their own.”

Now the city of Prescott is looking to include Arrowseal in all of its retrofit projects. With a little investment in time and patience, Bryce turned a few small projects into a steady stream of work that will pay off for both Arrowseal and the taxpayers of Prescott, Arizona.