Posts Tagged ‘committment’

Beware of Drive By Pricing

December 23, 2010

Hello Friends,
Whenever I am asked to provide pricing for a replacement furnace or air conditioner, we always perform a full analysis of the home including a heat loss/gain report to ensure that our customer gets the best system for their needs. This procedure requires a 2.5 hour visit to the customer’s home. Recently, a customer asked me, “Why do you need so much time? Another contractor gave me a price in 5 minutes! Don’t you know what you are doing?”

I would like to answer this question.

The replacement of your home heating and air conditioning system is a significant investment that will dictate your comfort, efficiency and safety for the next 10 – 20 years. Only with the proper research can you be confident that your system will meet your expectations and satisfy your needs.

Some of the many questions that need to be answered are as follows.

  1. Is your home warm enough?
  2. Does your current system maintain a uniform temperature throughout your home?
  3. Are there rooms that are always too cold or too warm?
  4. Is the air in your home fresh or do you find that your home air is stale and stuffy?
  5. Is your home too dry? Is your furniture and/or hardwood floors cracking?
  6. Is your home too humid? Do you have a mould or condensation problem?
  7. Will the new air system be compatible with the existing duct system and piping system in my home?
  8. Do you have enough hot water?
  9. How will this new system affect my air quality?
  10. How will this new system affect the pressure in your home?
  11. Is your home air clean? Does anyone in your household have breathing issues like asthma and allergies?
  12. Is your existing system oversized and operating inefficiently?
  13. How much heat do you actually need?
  14. How much cooling do you actually need?

As you can see, there are so many issues that must be dealt with in order to make the right equipment selection and to ensure that your selection will work well together with your existing infrastructure.

I have been to so many homes where the client is suffering because the contractor they hired to replace their furnace just offered a quick 5 minute Drive By Quote and failed to properly assess the home and their needs.

Any contractor who makes a proposal with a 5 minute visit will not be able to propose the best system for your budget, comfort, safety and efficiency.

The CMHC Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has published a FREE guide on how to buy a new furnace, boiler and/or air conditioner. You can click here to get to the order page and you can order the printed booklet or electronic copy.

For your interest, I have put a copy of the guide below.

View this document on Scribd

See this video about what can happen if your contractor does not properly assess your needs.


Boilers Part 17 – Restrictive Heat Exchanger = High Pumping Costs

November 30, 2010

The second disadvantage of most Direct Vent Condensing Boilers is their restrictive heat exchangers. Not all DVCB have this disadvantage however so you must make sure to ask your contractor about this. Let’s say that you have a 3,000 square foot home with an 80,000 BTUH boiler. You would probably need about 8-10 GPM or 8-10 gallons of water passing through your boiler per minute. Most boilers would have a pressure drop through your boiler of 8 feet of head. The best boilers have a pressure drop as low as 5 feet of head. This means that with the right boiler your pump will work half as hard. Pumping water around your house uses quite a bit of electricity. With a non restrictive heat exchanger, you will be able to keep this cost to a minimum.

Make sure that your contractor understands pump and boiler flow curves so that your system will be designed to run as efficiently as possible.

Boilers Part 16 – High Efficiency Boiler Disadvantages

November 28, 2010

The Direct Vent Condensing Boiler is the best choice for any home. However, you must be careful when selecting the right boiler for you.

In order to successfully transfer the heat from the flame to the water as easily as possible, the vast majority of condensing boilers force the water through a very restrictive heat exchanger with many small passages. This can cause 2 very serious problems.

The first problem is that if one of these passages becomes blocked with debris or dirt from the system, the heat exchanger will quickly overheat and fail. A heat exchanger replacement on a high efficiency boiler can be in excess of $2,000. It would be a shame to lose all your fuel savings on a major repair like this. These restrictive heat exchangers require extensive cleaning annually. Since many people neglect to call for service, and many contractors don’t even know about this required cleaning, many people have suffered disappointment and heat exchanger failure. Life doesn’t have to be this complicated. If this boiler is installed with the proper flow design, dirt and air separator and cleaned as per the manufacturers’ instructions, it will last a long time.

In my next post, I will discuss the second problem with these restrictive heat exchangers.

Boilers Part 15 – Turndown

November 25, 2010

Hi Again, Turndown is the ability of a boiler to reduce its input to match the load. Imagine a home with 3 floors and a separate thermostat and heating zone for each floor. When all three floors require heat, the demand might be 80,000 BTUH. This would require an 80,000 BTUH boiler. If only the basement needed heat, the load might only be 20,000 BTUH. Firing an 80,000 BTUH boiler would be overkill and horribly inefficient. All DVCB have a turndown that allows the boiler to fire at the required rate for that time so the boiler would fire just at the 20,000BTUH that you need. Efficiency is enhanced once again.

Now that it is crystal clear that the best option for a boiler is the DVCB, Direct Vent Condensing Boiler, I would like to discuss the problems with these boilers and how to avoid them.

My Latest Ad Thornhill Liberal – October 21, 2010

October 25, 2010

At ClimateCare, we are your personal climate experts on all things air. This includes heating, air conditioning, indoor air quality and even Radon Testing.
What do think of this ad?

View this document on Scribd

Introducing Steve, our new team member and Blogger!

June 28, 2010

Premi-air CLIMATECARE is pleased to announce the appointment of Stephen McGann to our residential sales team.  Stephen has extensive experience as an HVAC professional and is highly regarded by his industry peers.  He has been in the HVAC industry for 30 years starting part time with the Consumers’ Gas Company. He quickly moved up the ranks to reach the highly respected position of Special Fitter and ultimately was promoted to Technical Supervisor of the customer service department.  Feeling the need to expand his technical and managerial experience he joined a local Toronto based HVAC Company as their Service Operations Manager and stayed there until Sears Canada asked him to join their team as their HVAC Technical manager and all around technical guru. He leveraged all of his strengths and experiences as a key HVAC team member to help grow the Sears business across all of Canada. Stephen has dedicated his HVAC career to helping customers and believes his new position at Premi-air is an excellent fit in helping customers wade through all of the technological changes and efficiency improvements when deciding on which best equipment choices to make when replacing their HVAC systems.  

I am also very pleased to announce that Stephen has agreed to join me as a co-blogger and will be chiming in from time to time with helpful information for all of our customers.

Premi-Air ClimateCare Mission Statement

June 18, 2010

Hi Everyone,

Premi-Air just joined up with ClimateCare. I will tell you about what that means for us and our customers in future posts. Today I want to introduce our latest Mission Statement. This mission statement is the goal and guiding light for all of us at Premi-Air ClimateCare to follow. In every action that we take, whether it be servicing our customers in the field or performing office and managerial duties we must ask ourselves, “Am I executing my duties in a manner that is consistent with our company attributes? Is what I am doing and how I am doing it getting us closer to our goal and is it fulfilling our Mission Statement”  This will keep all of us focused and motivated.

So Here We Go.

The Premi-Air ClimateCare Mission Statement:

Guiding our customers to the best indoor climate solutions executed with superlative service and value.

(Webster’s define superlative as “surpassing all others of very high quality”)

Company Attribute Number 6

June 17, 2010

6. Professionalism

Performance of all our duties with care, pride and accountability.

Management Example

Respecting the space and time of our peers.

Field Example

Maytag Man – clean, neat, empathic. A model for best practice and behavior in the industry.

Company Attribute Number 5

June 16, 2010

5. Excellence

Striving for peak performance and quality in all our actions.

Management and Field Example

Exceeding the customers’ expectations by taking ownership of their issues in a friendly, professional and competent manner.

Delivering performance that you can take pride in.

Company Attribute Number 4

June 14, 2010

Hi Everybody,

I apologize that I haven’t blogged in a week. My world changed this week and since so much has happened, I did not have a chance to blog. I will now introduce our 4th company attribute.

4. Dedication

Putting the needs of our customers, team members and company ahead of our own personal needs.

Management and Field Example

Going beyond the scope of your job description when the situation calls for it.