Going Green Wirelessly Leads to Increased Sales

January 19, 2009
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HVAC contractor Steve Bilica of Home Comfort Systems, Bolingbrook, Ill., explains the functions of a Honeywell wireless thermostat to an interested homeowner.


There are many different products in the HVAC equipment world that cater to the green building tidal wave. Efficiency is a key green element that builders are using to market residential and commercial new construction. And what better way to promote efficiency than through the expanding world of wireless products?

“The new wireless technology opens up almost every house to zoning and the opportunity to have a greener heating and cooling system,” said Bob Munch Jr., vice president of Munch’s Supply Co., New Lenox, Ill.

“There is a tremendous energy savings in zoning because you will only heat or cool the zoned areas as needed. Zoning now becomes a real option for homeowners. In the past with zoning, you could only put it in applications where you could run the wires. Now, you can offer energy-saving zoning to virtually every homeowner.”

Munch is especially optimistic about the new trio of Honeywell wireless products, designed to play a key role in more efficient indoor HVAC systems. These products include:

• FocusPRO® Thermostat;

• Portable Comfort Control;

• Wireless Outdoor Sensor.

“From a distributor’s point of view, I love the Honeywell wireless products,” he said. “This is exactly the type of energy-saving product that we encourage our contractors to promote. Not only does it allow them to differentiate themselves from the competition, but also it shows that this contractor is engaged with technology. With increased competition battling for fewer jobs, a contractor must find ways to rise above the rest. They can accomplish this by aligning themselves with a sophisticated product like the Honeywell wireless.

“Munch’s Supply is always looking for the best contractors, and we want them selling the best products. This is a perfect fit.”



Bilica makes an adjustment on a damper in a Honeywell wireless zoning system.

HELPING BUILDERS DIFFERENTIATE

Not only is selling wireless a key to setting HVAC contractors apart from each other, it also helps their customers - namely builders - separate themselves from their competition.

“Builders in our area are doing everything they can to set themselves apart from the others, and when we can get a builder to take time to sit down with us they are very receptive to the products we offer,” said Terry Boone, owner of Perfect Air of Abingdon, Abingdon, Va. “These products fit very well in what I am trying to do to green my business up.”

Hal Swanson, service manager for Ocean State Heating & A/C, Neptune Beach, Fla., said the Honeywell wireless products speak well for themselves and credits Honeywell for getting the word out. “Honeywell provides excellent product knowledge, beta, and field testing experiences,” he said. “Online product education is another valuable asset. When you have great products and can speak about the products first hand, the builders feel your sense of excitement and integrity about the product line.”

Swanson said these products market themselves to builders beyond just efficiency - and noted several reasons including energy conservation, preservation, and safety. “Until now, the mercury used in thermostats was detrimental to the environment when the thermostat was disposed,” he said.

“The mercury-free thermostat eliminates the danger to the environment. In addition, the digital control and adaptive intelligence (in programmable thermostats) provides more accurate temperature control than the old mercury style, conserving energy. From a contractor’s perspective it saves money, as it is not necessary to pull low voltage wire. Thus, materials and labor costs are reduced.”



Bilica points out how a Honeywell wireless thermostat interacts with a home’s zoning system.

GREEN SELLS - AND SELLS

Swanson added that green technology is at the forefront of preserving the world for future generations, noting that when consumers need to replace equipment in their home, energy conservation, safety, and efficiency are the most popular topics of discussion. “More efficient equipment, customizing comfort control with zoning systems and programmable thermostats, and environmentally-friendly refrigerant all make going green more attainable,” he said.

“We see green energy-saving products as a growth opportunity in the coming years,” said Munch. “I really get excited when I look at what Honeywell has done with their product offerings. The Honeywell wireless thermostats, portable comfort control, and the wireless outdoor sensor provide the contractor with a killer combination of wireless products.”

For HVAC contractors like Boone, the wireless product line and support create a logical next step in keeping up with technology and giving builders exactly what they want. “Honeywell does a great job with their literature program, and that is one of the reasons I am such a loyal customer of theirs,” he said. “They also have a personal use/model home program that will let us see and try the products at a reduced cost. This really helps to convert builders who aren’t familiar with the offerings we can give them.

“I plan on promoting the green aspect of our company through advertising and on the Web heavily in the spring.”



Bilica installs components of a Honeywell wireless zoning system.

Munch said builders are facing demands from curious homeowners who are using the many Web tools to get more information on green technology. It is up to the builders to keep up with these growing demands.

“Builders see the opportunity for building greener homes, but they don’t always know what is available,” he said. “They want contractors that are familiar with the technology and the wide array of available products. The builders also see the direction of government tax incentives as they relate to green energy-saving technologies for the home.”

Can tax incentives be enough to put homebuyers in a green state of mind and kick start the slumping new construction market? Swanson thinks so.

“Even though the economy has not been thriving, contractors still have no problem choosing green friendly technology,” he said. “It’s a great selling point for them. Being able to tell the customer they can save money on their energy costs because of the efficiency of the equipment and the personalized comfort controls offered by Honeywell can lead to increased sales. The customer feels good about the products and the contractor.”

For more information, visit www.forwardthinking.honeywell.com.

Publication date: 01/19/2009

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Green Technology/New Products

Bret
January 24, 2009
Great article. I don't think our company is aware of all the new products available.

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