The NEWS’sixth annual Dealer Design Awards’ Testing & Monitoring Products category winners are ready to assist contractors in better serving their customers. Centering on easier and more accurate performance and diagnostics, each entry offered its own unique feature to the winners’ circle. Fieldpiece Instruments’ HVAC Guide® System Analyzer captured gold; DENT Instruments’ PowerScout™ Series seized silver; and Digi-Cool-Thermal Engineering-TruTech’s Digi-Cool 1250 with Sherman Manifold grabbed bronze.

Gold Winner: Fieldpiece Instruments’ HVAC Guide® System Analyzer guides HVAC field technicians step-by-step through HVAC tests.


Fieldpiece Instruments’ HVAC Guide® System Analyzer is a hand-held instrument that guides HVAC field technicians, step-by-step, through HVAC tests including superheat, subcooling, target evaporator exit temp (delta T across the coil), and combustion analysis. Tests can be saved and downloaded to a PC for system/customer tracking and work order printouts. They can also be uploaded back to the HVAC Guide System Analyzer for comparison during scheduled maintenance. All the charts and calculators are built-in to make the testing faster.

To do a superheat test, the tech would select “Superheat” on the dial. Then using the accessory heads - data can also be entered in manually if using other equipment such as a standard set of gauges - the technician would enter the outdoor dry bulb temperature, return wet bulb temperature, suction pressure, and suction line temperature on the input form and view the results of the test on the output form. The output form displays the target superheat, the actual superheat, and has an explanation of the test. The guide is also expandable with other Fieldpiece accessory heads.

According to the company, the product can make installs, scheduled maintenance, and service easier, better, and faster because the tests are laid out in a logical fashion on the dial and on the input and output forms. If the system is good to go right off the pallet, the analyzer provides a record that all of the critical tests were in spec upon install. During maintenance, it provides technicians with the ability to show the customer what work is needed and why. During service, the analyzer can be the first step in assessing the problem. After the service call, a work order detailing the test can be generated for the customer to keep on file.

Silver Winner: DENT Instruments’ PowerScout™ Series Networked Power Meters have color-coded voltage leads and clearly labeled CTs.


DENT Instruments’ PowerScout™ Series networked power meters are submetering devices designed to provide timely and accurate consumption data. These meters can capture kWh/kW energy and demand data as well as virtually all relevant energy parameters for diagnostics and monitoring on three-phase or single-phase circuit installations. According to the company, the PowerScouts’ flexibility, size, and ease-of-use make them ideal tools for gathering detailed consumption information in commercial, industrial, government, and retail environments. The meters use direct connections to each phase of the voltage and various pre-wired CT options such as split-core current transformers or flexible Rogowski coils for large loads or large cables and busbars, to monitor current on each phase. Communications interface to the PowerScout through an RS-485 serial connection using the industry-standard Modbus protocol. Up to 254 PowerScout meters may be connected to a single RTU or data logger for monitoring and recording power usage at multiple locations within a single site.

The device has color-coded voltage leads and clearly labeled CTs. The company’s patent-pending PhaseChek™ circuitry includes a three LED indicator display that confirms proper CT-to-phase installation. It automatically adjusts for CT orientation, which helps reduce set-up time and all but eliminates installation errors, said the company.

The meter features over 50 measured parameters for energy measurement, monitoring, and diagnostics; three or 18 channels for multicircuit or branch circuit monitoring; and is line-powered.

Bronze Winner: The Digi-Cool 1250 with Sherman Manifold is designed for a/c and refrigeration service at the residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial levels.


The Digi-Cool 1250 with Sherman Manifold is a new digital gauge set from Digi-Cool-Thermal Engineering-TruTech. This offering combines the diagnostic power of the DRSA 1250 digital gauges with the Tough as a Tank™ Sherman four-port refrigerant manifold. The four-port manifold has 30-degree offset handles.

Designed for a/c and refrigeration service at the residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial levels, the gauge allows technicians to see real time, high and low side pressures and saturation temperatures on a large, backlit display. The unit automatically calculates superheat and subcooling for 30 refrigerants with the two standard Velcro temperature probes. The patented low-and high-side bar graphs provide pressure dynamics.

The gauge features a heavy duty anodized, machined aluminum body and double-sided sight glass. The large bore machined holes and 3/8 vacuum connection, coupled with a patent-pending, double o-ring piston design for controlled refrigerant flow and maximum vacuum, allow for years of trouble-free use, said the company. Absolute pressure can be manually programmed for varying altitudes. Optional spring and bar clamp temperature probe upgrades are available.

2009 Honorees: Testing & Monitoring Instruments

Fieldpiece Instruments
HVAC Guide® System Analyzer

DENT Instruments
PowerScout™ Networked Power Meter

Digi-Cool-Thermal Engineering-TruTech
Digi-Cool 1250 with Sherman Manifold

Testo Inc.
testo 880 thermal imager

Fyrite Insight

Publication date:07/13/2009