Taking Control of the Situation

July 16, 2007
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Every great Major League Baseball team needs a good manager who knows the game and can communicate with the players. For HVAC equipment to work when it should and how it should, the system also needs one portion of the system to call the plays and communicate well with other components to let them know what to do. That’s where controls, whether in a home, office building, or other type of edifice, do their part.

Three products knocked it out of the park and earned gold and bronze in the Residential Controls (including zoning) category of The NEWS’ fourth annual Dealer Design Awards. Arzel® Zoning Technology Inc.’s Zonocity™ and Emerson Climate Technologies’ Ultratech™ Communicating Sys-tem grabbed the gold, while EWC Controls’ Internet-enabled WebStat IZT-250 snagged the bronze.

GOLD: Zonocity by Arzel Zoning Technology is a zoning system that features a single-stage zone controller, damper that slips easily into existing round or rectangular trucks, or even directly into the 2-inch runouts.

GOLD WINNER

Zonocity by Arzel Zoning Technology Inc. is a zoning system specifically designed for Small-Duct High-Velocity (SDHV) products, which is a feature that caused one judge to remark that the product is a “one of a kind unit that will work well with a high-velocity system.”

It features a single-stage zone controller, damper that slips easily into existing round or rectangular trunks, or even directly into the 2-inch runouts. A single trunk line is all that is required. The Ezyslide™ damper goes into either the main trunks or in the 2-inch branches.

When installed, the system creates a small amount of blow-by into the closed zone(s) to prevent warm, moist air from infiltrating back up the branch runs. This limits the increase in the open runs to about 10 cubic feet per minute/outlet.

The system allows contractors to customize not only where air is going, but when it is sent there. If customers change the way they use the home, the zones can be easily reconfigured to fit their new lifestyle.

Historical buildings, structures with architectural constraints, or buildings that incorporate radiant, steam, or hydronic heating are a perfect match for a high-velocity cooling system, said the manufacturer.

A judge described it as having “good design features that has increased ease of use for this particular application.” An additional judge commented that the product is a “good idea” and that it is has an “ease of installation.”

GOLD: The UltraTech™ Communicating System by Emerson Climate Technologies is an integrated network of components that work together.

GOLD WINNER

The UltraTech™ Communicating System by Emerson Climate Technologies is an integrated network of components that work together. The system components share information to precisely maintain temperature and humidity, alert the homeowners to system problems, reduce callbacks, and protect the compressor from system-damaging faults.

The various UltraTech components involved include the thermostat, indoor control, variable-speed blower motor, unitary control, and two-stage Copeland Scroll compressor. The system features four-wire connection between the indoor and outdoor units. By sharing information system-wide, the UltraTech autoconfigures and checks system settings, with no additional wires needed.

One enthused judge stated the “system makes complex installations easier for the rank-and-file technician,” and continued by saying it has “excellent diagnostics and protection.”

Another judge made this observation: “This control is easy to install and will save on installation costs. There are several that can make that claim. It also seems to be client friendly (i.e., the homeowner) and that is important. Many controls claim to be user-friendly, but the callbacks are tremendous because the client doesn’t know how to use it. This control may solve that problem.”

BRONZE: The Internet-Enabled WebStat IZT-250’s remote connection allows the homeowner or contractor to change, check, or clarify temperature and humidity via the Internet.

BRONZE WINNER

The Internet-Enabled WebStat IZT-250, by EWC Controls, is a Web-enabled thermostat. The remote connection allows the homeowner or contractor to change, check, or clarify temperature and humidity via the Internet. The communicating feature allows the thermostat to send an e-mail or text message to the homeowner or direct to the service contractor, alerting the person of high or low temperature, high or low humidity, or any other alarm parameter that a remote sensor can detect is out of operating range.

It can be installed in order to protect expensive belongings and help maintain peace of mind for the homeowner. It can be used in light commercial applications, too. The contracting company can put a price tag on the alarm going to the contractor, said Mike Reilly, vice president for marketing and sales, EWC Controls.

A judge commented that this product is a “great idea. This has been around for commercial use, but finally there’s a good residential product.” Another said that it has “good features and great network abilities.”

A third judge said it is “relatively new to the market, but if it works, it can add dollars to the bottom line of the service company with its monitoring features.

“The IZT-250 would notify the service company of a problem before the client would know something is wrong. … Major damage can be prevented to the equipment, home, or office.”

HONOREES: RESIDENTIAL CONTROLS

GOLD
Arzel Zoning Technology Inc.
www.arzelzoning.com
Zonocity™

GOLD
Emerson Climate Technologies
www.emersonclimatecontractor.com
UltraTech™ Communicating System

BRONZE
EWC Controls
www.ewccontrols.com
Internet-Enabled WebStat IZT-250

HONORABLE MENTION
Honeywell
www.honeywell.com
VisionPRO IAQ Thermostat with Networked Zoning

Publication date: 07/16/2007

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Residential Webstat Market

Gerri
March 24, 2008
Hi, My husband and I are interested in extending a division of service for our residential a/c cliental. Can you please let me know how marketable a residential webstat system is and any suggestions as to how to go about marketing such a system would be extremely helpful. Thank you, Gerri Martorana Enchanted Environments

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