HVAC contractors have a plethora of software products to choose from, all of which are designed to make their companies run more smoothly and generate more profit. Below are just a few of the software solutions that contractors may want to consider.

Carmel Software
The HVAC Residential Load Calcs HD software application specifically developed for the Apple iPad is the first mobile HVAC block load calculation software application available, noted the company. It allows users to perform detailed heating and cooling loads for small commercial and residential buildings out in the field by taking advantage of the simplicity, power, and screen size of the iPad. The app allows HVAC technicians and engineers to go out into the field, do a quick and comprehensive load calculation, and email the results back to the office to conduct more detailed analysis.

CUC Software
Contractor Essentials© is a fully integrated and modularized accounting, job costing, and service dispatching system that can be customized to fit a company’s needs from basic accounting, job costing, and dispatching to fleet management, refrigerant tracking, flat rate pricing, marketing and analysis, and so much more. Modularization allows each company to purchase or lease only the features that are needed for their business, then expand as new functions are needed. Support and development are handled in house, and quarterly updates provide a wide range of enhancements on a regular basis.

Davis Business Solutions
GlobalEdge Software offers service companies a logistical infrastructure that allows managers and owners to maintain their personnel, fleet, inventory, and client feedback in a cost-effective fashion. GlobalEdge is paperless and can seamlessly tie together all functions of a business. This comprehensive software package can identify the right person for each field challenge; facilitate scheduling for technicians with as little time as possible spent traveling from job-to-job; track the availability of parts, order them and reorder them as needed; notify accounting for billing purposes; and offer a GPS identifying the location of every truck in the fleet.

Dexter + Chaney
The new release of Spectrum® Construction software, Version 14, will include many new features and will be accessible via any web browser from any location using any Internet-connected device. The browser-based product allows customers to access all the features of their software anywhere, anytime from any device. Spectrum Version 14 can be hosted by the client or offered as a software-free cloud product. New customers will find the cost of switching to Spectrum has never been lower, and existing customers will benefit from a lower total cost of ownership, noted the company.

Elite Software
Version 9 of Rhvac accurately calculates peak heating and cooling loads for residential and small commercial buildings in accordance with the eighth edition of the ACCA Manual J. Design weather data for over 1,500 cities is built-in to the program, and the user can also revise the existing weather data and add additional weather data as desired. Zoning cfm adjustments are automatically handled by the program as needed. Other features include exterior glass shading, ventilation air, miscellaneous latent loads, default room data, automatic rotation of the entire building, hydronic heat calculations, and much more.

The Energy Conservatory
An improved version of TECLOG2™ data logging software allows contracting professionals performing envelope testing or building performance testing to accurately and quickly help evaluate the airtightness of commercial buildings. This Windows®-based software can be downloaded for free and is designed to facilitate multi-gauge and multi-fan testing. The software delivers air tightness values to the display screen in real time, which helps eliminate the time consuming sorting of data once starting calculations and reports on the computer. The program provides easy control of data acquisition parameters including sampling rates, auto-zero intervals, and blower door fan flows.

GPS Insight
GPS Insight provides tracking, navigation, and messaging technology, utilizing high-quality GPS hardware, as well as the technology, customization, and enhancements that fleet-based companies demand. Using the GPS Insight solution, companies can gain efficiency and insight into all aspects of their fleet operations by utilizing features such as current location, unlimited history, Garmin integration, engine diagnostics, routing, reports, alerts, and messaging. GPS Insight provides highly flexible solutions, which include a wide range of customized reports, alerts, and other features that can be tailored to meet specific customer requirements and ensure maximum return on investment.

GoTrack Inc.
With GoTrack™ EZ, users can track a vehicle anytime, anywhere. The device eliminates any long term contracts, so businesses can use the system as they need. When installed in a vehicle, the GoTrack receiver obtains the GPS signal and sends the speed, location, and other data back to the GoTrack server every minute while the ignition is on. The information is made available to customers through any computer or smart phone with Internet access. GoTrack provides management reports that can be automatically emailed daily, weekly or monthly, as well as email and text alerts for speeding, maintenance, after hours movement, and more.

GTX Corp.
The new series of the GTXImage CAD™ Version 14.0 products is a unique, cost-effective solution that brings legacy paper drawings into CAD-EDM-GIS environments. The Version 14.0 product line now includes enhanced raster editing features and is fully compatible with the latest AutoCAD 2012/2011/2010 DWG and DXF formats. Consisting of GTXImage CAD and GTXImage CAD PLUS, Version 14.0 products combine GTX image clean-up, raster and hybrid editing, raster-to-vector conversion and Intelligent Character Recognition (GTXICR™), along with the AutoCAD OEM engine for the high quality AutoCAD 2-D drafting tools.

Maxwell Systems
The newly released Maxwell Systems™ Estimation® solution is an advanced takeoff and estimating software designed specifically to address the needs of electrical, mechanical, plumbing, and HVAC contractors. Estimation now includes numerous maintenance enhancements, as well as CAD integration with EastCoast Sheet Metals CAD/CAM product for the Estimation HVAC and Mechanical solutions. The enhancements in this release will help contractors to seamlessly integrate their Estimation digital takeoff and estimating product with Maxwell Systems complete construction management solution, ProContractorMX™.

FieldForce Mobile, a web-based mobile messaging software for the mobile workforce, enables companies to save time and money by communicating with their workers via two-way text messages. Designed to give small- and medium-sized businesses a competitive mobile edge without the need to buy new phones or hardware, FieldForce Mobile is on-demand two-way text messaging software that is ideal for companies with 5 to 500 technicians, drivers, or contractors working away from the office. FieldForce offers companies the ability to let their workers use the phones they already have by utilizing a web-based dashboard, which offers visibility, control, and increased revenues through improved work communication efficiencies.

WebPlus X5 is a complete website design software package that provides everything a business needs to get online. WebPlus X5, which is compatible with Windows 7/Vista/XP, has been designed for small to medium businesses that want to make and publish their own websites but do not have any HTML or web design experience. Its drag-and-drop facility enables individuals to easily create attractive, engaging and professional sites with e-commerce and interactivity. With WebPlus X5, websites can be designed on a user’s local computer rather than using an online-only template builder, and while WebPlus does provide template sites to edit, users can customize everything or design from scratch.

SuccessWare®21 is a fully-integrated business management, dispatch, and accounting software solution specifically tailored to the needs of companies in the residential HVAC, plumbing, and electrical service/replacement industries. SuccessWare21 now offers a web portal, which allows clients to book their own appointments in real-time into timeslots that are controlled on the dispatch board. This tool creates a completely new way to expand the relationship with existing clients, as well as creating an easy, customer-driven method for adding new ones. SuccessWare21 also offers a special emphasis on service location management including equipment and warranty tracking.

Design Link serves as a central source for BIM design collaboration of HVAC and sheet metal. It acts as a BIM conduit, allowing for the easy implementation and management of data, project specifications, and fabrication standards. Design Link extends the functionality of designs created in AutoCAD® MEP used in the Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) process by adding standards-driven detail. This detail facilitates the exchange of data between the finished design to estimating, collision avoidance and collaboration applications, fabrication, and field layout.

Right-Mobile Consultant™” is a powerful, easy to use Cloud-based tool that automates a repeatable sales process with proven selling techniques for the HVAC dealer. This tool was designed to work on a multitude of devices, including desktop PCs, laptops, and tablet devices. Users can access the same program via a web browser on desktop, laptop or tablet systems with touch-screen capabilities. Right-Mobile Consultant provides Manual J block load calculations; utility costs; payback analysis; proposals; presentations with Right-Roadshow™ iPad app; email; and reports. According to the company, Right-Mobile Consultant standardizes the sales process, increases the likelihood of profitability, and improves dealer confidence.

Publication date: 12/26/2011