Highly Efficient Products Deliver Precise Comfort
An ultra-high-efficiency gas furnace from Lennox earns Dealer Design gold
The Dave Lennox Signature® Collection SLP98V Gas Furnace is designed for residential applications, but may also be used in light commercial applications requiring 110,000 Btuh of heat or less. Its functionality and versatility helped Lennox Intl. Inc. take home the gold award in the HVAC High-Efficiency Residential Equipment category of the 2016 Dealer Design Awards.
“The SLP98V was developed by aligning two of our greatest commitments, the needs of our dealers and consumers and product innovation,” said Kim Do, senior product manager, heating, Lennox Intl. Inc. “A total of seven years of research and development went into the current design of the SLP98V. Two and a half years went into determining the specific features of the initial design development with three years of research on the heat exchanger design. The latest improvement on the secondary heat exchanger took a year and a half of research and development and allowed the SLP98V to achieve efficiencies up to 98.7 percent AFUE.”
A series of focus groups and surveys were used throughout the product’s development stages to identify key specifications and features that address both dealer and consumer needs.
“We want to not only solve the problems people face but to also improve their overall comfort and everyday lifestyles,” said Do. “We want them to experience the ultimate comfort.”
Such comfort was readily apparent to one DDA judge, who said, “The SLP98V is the most versatile and useful warm-air heating product available to the industry.”
Modulating heat capabilities and a variable-speed blower motor work together to provide the exact amount of heating a home requires, including adjusting heat output to any level from 35 percent to 100 percent in 1 percent increments. The product includes a forward-facing ignitor and sensor-mounting screws for inspection or replacement, snap-in pressure switch mounting that allows for removal without tools, and an upflow/horizontal design that can be configured in multiple positions with minimal changes. The SLP98V gas furnace is also iComfort®-enabled, meaning homeowners have the ability to access their thermostats from their smartphones, tablets, or computers from anywhere in the world.
“The growth of high-efficiency, variable-speed products with communicating capabilities ensures that the SLP98V will be a favorite among dealers and consumers for years to come,” said Do. “With an environment moving toward smart energy management, the SLP98V will continue to evolve to incorporate smarter features that will inform the consumer and dealer of system performance down to the component level.”
Aeroseal LLC’s HomeSeal PRO is an aerosol-based duct-sealing system for residential applications. It features wireless capabilities and a remote management system that allows technicians to move away from the Aeroseal equipment during the sealing process. Instead, a long-range Wi-Fi signal is sent from the equipment to technicians’ HomeSeal PRO portable tablets.
The product earned the silver award in the HVAC High-Efficiency Residential category after spending four years in research and development.
“As a former contractor, I like its ability to allow technicians to move about a house without being tethered to the equipment,” said Bryan Barnes, senior director of residential applications, Aeroseal. “A tech can control a system without being right at the unit, and, from a manpower standpoint, it is a huge benefit to the contractor. A lot of contractors like the ability to engage consumers.”
The HomeSeal PRO’s wireless capabilities eliminate the need to transport equipment into the house and assemble, allowing workers to arrive with the equipment pre-assembled and ready to use directly from the truck. The same remote device used to monitor the equipment also provides access to marketing materials, which allows workers to share information with customers and answer questions they may have.
Rheem Mfg. Co.’s EcoNet™ Enabled, inverter-driven Variable Speed Heat Pumps earned the bronze.
These units have inverter technology, meaning they modulate the current to the compressor and allow the compressor to slow down or speed up based on the user’s cooling/heating needs. The inverter technology in these units helps with moisture removal and modulates as low as 900 rpm and as high as 7,000 rpm.
Rheem spent more than four years researching and designing this product line.
“Utilizing our exclusive 360°+1 product development philosophy, we develop all new products by first capturing invaluable, in-field feedback from contractors,” said Farooq Mohammad, director, product management, air conditioning division, Rheem. “In turn, we are then able to design all of our new products with features that contractors desire.
“For Rheem, a combination of several factors all drive our product development efforts, including contractor demand, consumer need, and government regulatory updates, which has led us to create more highly efficient, inverter-driven products,” continued Mohammed. “Pertinent in every new product design is contractor feedback as we strive to make all new products high-performing as well as easy to install and service. We believe the HVAC industry will continue to demand increasing innovation around inverter technology in the future to deliver affordable, optimal comfort solutions.”
Lennox Intl. Inc.
Dave Lennox Signature® Collection SLP98V Gas Furnace
Rheem Mfg. Co.
EcoNet™ Enabled, inverter-driven, Variable Speed Heat Pumps
Publication date: 7/18/2016