Winners Have the Right Stuff

July 17, 2006
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Tools that a contractor and technician have at their disposal today are more than just the tools that were in the toolbox of past generations. Nowadays, a contractor's toolbox contains software as well as other instruments and devices. In some cases, the new tool could be designing software that helps get the job done, and in others, it's a smart tool with software that can communicate with HVAC equipment, aiding in diagnosing the problem. The Uponor System Design Software by Wrightsoft, and the Source 1 Pocket Tech Pro with Pocket Tech Software by Coleman, belong to this new generation of contractor tools and have earned accolades from the judges in the Contractor Services and Software category of The NEWS' third annual Dealer Design Awards.

GOLD: CAD-quality drawings are automatically generated in Wrightsoft's Uponor System Design Software with automatic layout and calculation of a wide variety of loop patterns for interior and snow melt.

GOLD

The Uponor System Design Software (USDS), from Wrightsoft, is a complete radiant design program with snow melting capabilities for automatically designing and laying out radiant loops based on Uponor's standards. It is designed to aid the Uponor dealer in their design and installation while incorporating other features such as parts takeoff lists, proposals, and in-home selling capabilities.

"Uponor designers and sales consultants will be able to use USDS to easily produce and showcase color-coded, CAD-quality radiant loop design using multiple loop patterns that fit any size boundary," said Lisa Aach, marketing communications manager, Wrightsoft. "Connected to Uponor specific calculation methods, accurate results instantly update connected bills of material and professional proposals to assist in the sales process."

CAD-quality drawings are automatically generated with automatic layout and calculation of a wide variety of loop patterns for interior and snow melt, including serpentine, counter flow, two and three outside wall tracing with variable spacing, and other interior patterns.

The Hydronic Navigator screen automatically designs major piping component connections to provide specified zoning and manifold connections. It provides a tree display with automatically generated sizes, including supply and return piping to boiler, primary pump, system pumps, mixing devices, etc. The automatic parts list with loops, manifolds, manifold fittings, accessories and adapters, mixing devices, zone valves, actuators, and water temperature controls is generated along with a proposal showing final pricing.

"Wrightsoft not only helps our customers save valuable time and money, but we can confidently say that there is no other product on the market that can produce such a high caliber design like USDS," stated Jan Andersson, heating product manager, Uponor North America.

Some judges commented that this program may require some training for the user to be able to utilize it, but nonetheless all thought favorably of the software. One judge called it a "good, solid program," while another stated that Wrightsoft "did a nice job with this; it's long overdue." Yet another judge commented, "It seems to offer all the capabilities we have come to know from Wrightsoft. The package also seems to integrate well into the sales process: presentation, proposal, and sales management."

SILVER: The Source 1 Pocket Tech Pro with Pocket Tech Software, by Coleman, is a portable service tool that provides HVAC technicians with information to help diagnose HVAC equipment problems.

SILVER

The Source 1 Pocket Tech Pro with Pocket Tech Software, by Coleman, is a portable service tool that provides HVAC technicians with information to help diagnose HVAC equipment problems and perform required service. The software is installed on a PDA to provide instant diagnostic information to technicians servicing Coleman's or other manufacturer's equipment.

"The system diagnostics tool allows the user to perform a full functional test of the unit, as well as calculate additional refrigerant charge in split systems," said Andy Fracica, Coleman brand manager.

The judges responded favorably to the diagnostics that the unit offers. "Good tool for field diagnostics," commented one judge. A second judge remarked, "This tool provides a contractor with a complete view of the system. It is repeatable and [the information] can be stored for future reference."

The installation/start up component provides technicians with guidelines to follow when installing or starting up the unit. This will ensure proper installation and guarantees startup has been performed. The fault codes feature allows the technician to quickly and easily understand a control board flash code. By selecting the unit type and the control board part number, the technician will be presented with a list of potential fault codes for that specific control board. After selecting the fault code, the Pocket Tech tool will describe the fault and provide troubleshooting information.

Several judges commented on how the tool would help contractors help customers.

"This is an excellent product for techs to better understand what's happening in a system so they can provide better service to a customer," said one judge.

Honorees: Contractor Services and Software

GOLD
Wrightsoft - www.wrightsoft.com - USDS - Uponor System Design Software

SILVER
Coleman - www.colemanac.com - Source 1â„¢ Pocket Tech Pro with Pocket Tech Software

Publication date: 07/17/2006

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