Information is power, and the more power a contractor has to inform end users, the greater the ability they possess to meet end users’ needs and increase company profits. Working to collect information through testing and monitoring devices, The NEWS’
fourth annual Dealer Design Awards’ Testing & Monitoring Products category winners found themselves at the top of the information pile. Making the power play for gold, Fluke Corp.’s 975 Air Meter was designed for easy interface and all-in-one capability. Emerson Climate Technologies’ Comfort Alert™ Diagnostics flexed for a silver award with its detecting and diagnostic strength. UEi’s Eagle 2 Combustion Kit brought home a bronze award for its user-friendly complete systems analyzer.
GOLD: The Fluke Corp. 975 Air Meter calculates dew point and percent outside air, and comes with a full accessory kit including a case and software.
“When the name Fluke appears on any tool, the first thing that comes to mind is quality,” heralded a contractor judge. The Fluke Corp. 975 Air Meter is an all-in-one meter that measures temperature, humidity, carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), and air velocity. It offers simultaneous measurement, logging, and display of temperature, humidity, CO2, and CO on a backlit LCD display. It also calculates dew point and percent outside air, and comes with a full accessory kit including a case and software. The 975 is specifically used to optimize IAQ in occupied spaces by optimizing the performance of the HVAC system.
Fluke designed the 975 Air Meter from a number of perspectives, keeping HVAC technicians in mind. The unit is rugged and has been drop tested to 4 feet proving that it will survive tough work environments. Everyday contractors designed the user interface. This makes it easier for everyday contractors to use and interact with the product.
“This is a nice, portable, and multiple meter,” noted one judge. “It’s a good combination tool for the service tech and it is a great service and diagnostic meter.”
The meter allows a contractor to respond quickly to IAQ issues, such as ventilation, temperature, and humidity complaints. The product also offers built-in data logging. Combined with the software, contractors can download results and reports as value-added services while on site with a customer.
“This is an amazing product, the best product I have had the privilege to judge,” noted one judge. “I really like that I am able to accurately determine the percent of outdoor air. It does just about everything that is needed and is rugged and well built.”
SILVER: Emerson Climate Technologies’ Comfort Alert™ Diagnostics features built-in communication, simplified controls for two-stage compressors and three-phase active compressor protection.
Emerson Climate Technologies’ Comfort Alert™ Diagnostics detects common electrical and system problems, quickly directing service technicians to the cause of the problems. The platform features built-in communication, simplified controls for two-stage compressors, and three-phase active compressor protection. This feature takes the compressor offline during severe fault conditions, combining diagnostic capability with compressor protection from miswiring and short cycling.
“It saves diagnostic time and compressors,” said one judge.
Contractors also benefit from simplified installation. Comfort Alert Diagnostics can be installed inside the electrical box of a commercial outdoor unit. Using only four screws, contractors can install Comfort Alert wherever space is available inside the condensing unit. The T1, T2, and T3 openings provide more than enough space for the power wires to pass between the contactor and compressor. It runs on a 24 vac power supply.
“This is one of the best products out there, and it is making my job easier,” praised one judge.
All Comfort Alert’s electronics are self-contained inside the box, requiring no maintenance or service to the module. A flashing LED identifies electrical or system problems. This diagnostic value, with protection capability, helps eliminate preventable compressor failures.
“My company has actually installed a number of these and we have been happy with the results,” said one contractor judge. “This is really a great item.”
BRONZE: UEi’s Eagle 2 Combustion Kit tests and analyzes combustion stack gases and combines six instruments into one.
UEi’s Eagle 2 Combustion Analyzer™ Kit is an easy-to-use, complete systems analyzer. The handheld Eagle 2 combines six instruments into one: professional combustion analyzer, digital differential thermometer, high-resolution differential manometer, ambient CO detector, CO data logger, and heat exchange integrity tester.
“This is a great service tool for setting up equipment to its best efficiency,” noted one contractor judge.
“UEi’s product development team listened to technicians express their concerns about products with irrelevant features, lengthy manuals, and navigation through difficult menus,” said Sean Tierney of UEi.
“With a simple and familiar DMM-style rotary knob, using the Eagle 2 is as easy as: turn it on, select the fuel, and go.”
The Eagle 2 tests and analyzes combustion stack gases, CO, efficiency, gas pressure, static duct pressure, draft, and temperature on both the heating and air conditioning side of a comfort system. The kit includes infrared paper with an additional paper roll, two static pressure hoses, gas tap and hose, “true-draft” hose and probe, two K-type thermocouples, a flue probe, and an ac adapter.
“This is a great instrument for anyone who services fuel- fired equipment,” recommended one judge. “This product is user-friendly.”
HONOREES: TESTING & MONITORING
975 Air Meter
Emerson Climate Technologies
Comfort Alert™ Diagnostics
Eagle 2 Combustion Analyzer™ Kit
Pocket Line Test Instruments
HVAC System Performance Test Kit Publication date: