Articles by Kimberly Schwartz

Contractor Does It Right for 75 Years

“You don’t stay in this business for 75 years if you don’t do it right,” said Wayne E. Lanhardt, president and majority owner of the McCrea family of companies. “We call it ‘the McCrea way’ — do it the right way the first time.” Lanhardt’s claim that his family’s business is doing it the right way is borne out by the numbers. Revenues for 2010 were around $30 million.


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Thermostats Connect Consumers to the Future

As the popularity of smart phones and tablets continues to grow, consumers are becoming accustomed to multiple features and instant connectivity. And so they are starting to demand more from the other devices in their homes, including the thermostat.


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Industry Debates Labor Rules

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and Department of Labor (DOL) recently proposed to change the rules for union elections. The proposed rules, which have stirred up political controversy across the country, are being debated by the HVAC community.


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Controls Grow in Retrofit Market

With new construction still down, contractors who specialize in commercial controls can find more opportunities for their business by retrofitting existing buildings.


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Energy Star to Release Controls Spec

New Spec Replaces Discontinued Label for Programmable T-stats
Next year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plans to release a new Energy Star specification for climate controls. This spec will replace the discontinued Energy Star spec for programmable thermostats.
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Industry Questions DOE’s Guidelines

The Department of Energy (DOE) is in the midst of creating guidelines that could become the standard to which contractors must be certified to do work involving federal funds. However, a coalition of industry organizations says the guidelines are flawed.


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Cashing in on the Coupon Craze

Have you heard about the extreme couponing craze? From the women I talk to at church to the bloggers I read online, it seems like everyone is going gaga for coupons these days.


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Presenting Part 2 of the Social Media Skills Awards

I’ve been virtually meeting more and more contractors who are pushing to the forefront of social media, so it’s time to hand out a few more paper plate awards.


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The World Series of the Crafts

Last week I got the chance to sneak out of the office for a few hours to visit and report on the 2011 UA Apprentice Competition. Held in Ann Arbor, Mich., it is an intense contest designed to test the skills of UA apprentices.
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2014 World Energy Engineering Congress

Scenes from the 2014 World Energy Engineering Congress in Washington, D.C.

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NEWSMakers: Kari Arfstrom

Kari Arfstrom, executive director of the HVACR Workforce Development Foundation, talks about the upcoming HVACR & Mechanical Conference. Posted on Jan. 23.

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