Though only currently utilized by a small segment of the U.S. HVAC market, mini-split units are on the rise. One benefit of mini splits is they can be installed in rooms or buildings that have little or no ductwork. Many HVAC IAQ products, however, are placed in or make use of ductwork, and do not easily lend themselves to ductless applications.

The NEWS’ 2013 Ventilation category winner, the PHI Product for High Wall Mini Splits by RGF Environmental Group Inc., is designed specifically for mini-split applications.

It eliminates sick-building-syndrome risks by reducing odors, air pollutants, VOCs [volatile organic compounds], smoke, mold spores, bacteria, and viruses. According to the company, the technology it developed makes hydroperoxides from moisture in the air in an HVAC system. The company also developed PHI, an ionized hydroperoxide technology that simulates the naturally occurring hydroperoxides in the outside air. The technology works on
a rare metal catalyst and a hy-drating agent activated by a broad-spectrum UV light reacting with ambient moisture in the air creating hydroperoxides.

Another PHI development by the company ionizes the hydroperoxides, “essentially supercharging them. The concept is a proactive, aggressive method of indoor air sanitation.”

The main challenge the company faced in designing the product was where to install it, said Fred Perfetto, vice president commercial and consumer IAQ products, RGF Environmental Group Inc. He said that mini splits are engineered in such a way that there’s no space inside of the units to install anything.

The company also managed to allow the PHI Product for High Wall Mini Splits to be installed on any high wall mini-split system. Perfetto said the company talked to contractors before designing the product and elected to mount the equipment using a Velcro adhesion system on the outside of a mini-split’s return-air grille.“The technician then can just wire it directly to the main terminal block,” said Perfetto.


Steve Rimel, vice president, Aspen Air Conditioning Inc., Boca Raton, Fla., said his customers rave about the unit. “People love the product. They know it’s working as soon as we install it.” He also indicated that it is “a great way to add on some margin.”

Cousins Air has been carrying RGF Environmental Group Inc. products for several years. John T. Brescia Jr., vice president, Cousins Air Inc., Deerfield Beach, Fla., has installed the product regularly for the last six months on most of the company’s mini-split installations. He said it’s “pretty much plug-and-go, which makes my
job easier.”

Gold Winner Highlights

RGF EnvironmentalGroup Inc.
PHI Product for High Wall Mini Splits

Silver Winner

TrueZONE Bypass

The Honeywell Intl. Inc. TrueZONE Bypass damper uses a patented regulator that allows the contractor to directly set the desired maximum static pressure. The product is pre-calibrated to begin bypassing air at 0.5 inches water column of external static pressure, which will typically only bypass when one or more zones have closed. The set point can be adjusted by turning a handle, which tightens or loosens an internal calibrated spring that controls the tension on the bypass damper. According to the manufacturer, the damper does not use the weight system; it has a simple preset dial that needs little or no adjustment. It is simple to install at any angle without additional adjustments and does not require power or wiring, the company said.

Silver Winner Highlights

Honeywell Intl. Inc.
TrueZONE Bypass

Bronze Winner

Combination Storm/FEMA Louver/Blast Damper

United Enertech Corp.’s ICBL-20-WR combines a weather louver, blast damper, and FEMA [Federal Emergency Management Agency] storm shelter grille. A debris screen can be added which makes it in compliance with FEMA 361/ICC-500 storm shelter and safe-room standards. The blade lock secures the blades in the closed position after a blast takes place. The locks have a manual override which allows for periodic operational testing to ensure the proper performance of the damper. The unit comes standard with a 5-inch mounting flange for ease of installation. Detailed installation instructions are provided for many different substrates. According to the manufacturer, the unit is virtually maintenance free, with only periodic function tests and lubrication as needed.

Bronze Winner Highlights

United Enertech Corp.
Combination Storm/FEMA Louver/Blast Damper

Publication date: 7/22/2013 

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