When the COVID-19 pandemic finally made its way to the United States, the HVAC industry (and all essential businesses) were tasked with a difficult proposition: how to remain safe and healthy, while delivering necessary services for American homeowners. It’s during this difficult time that all essential workers looked into their hypothetical toolkit to see what they could use to help mitigate risk.
Luckily, tremendous innovations in technology have helped protect HVAC dealers and technicians during these difficult times. In fact, remote technology is poised to redefine the way technicians and homeowners interact, paving the way for a new generation of HVAC solutions. Simply put, it may be safe to say that remote technology is trending to become one of the biggest innovations within the HVAC space.
Here are three tips to share with technicians:
Communicate Extensively with your Customers
While this may seem obvious, more times than not homeowners are caught by surprise when a dealer make a house visit and has to enter the home. It’s critical that technicians set up mobile alerts, email notifications, as well as diligently explain via phone calls the reason for their need to interact with a homeowner. This will help limit the amount of time the technician and homeowner have to spend communicating during the visit.
Use Remote Diagnostic Capabilities when Possible
Determine if the HVAC unit is equipped with remote diagnostics and the homeowner has opted in to the program, which can let the technician access the home’s HVAC system remotely first to determine the problem and lessen or even eliminate homeowner contact. For example, Nexia Diagnostics is a web-based tool that allows Dealers to remotely view real-time data on the performance of their customers' HVAC systems. Dealers can also receive system alerts via email and manage their Diagnostics customers using the Dealer Dashboard.
In addition to remotely available system data, Nexia Diagnostics also offers a tool called Dealer Remote Configuration (DRC). With this tool andhomeowner permission, a Dealer can access a virtual version of a customer’s thermostat while maintaining social distance, providing peace of mind to customers and potentially saving an unnecessary onsite service appointment altogether.
Know Your Limits
It’s no secret that many people who have tested positive for COVID-19 show mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. Therefore, as a technician it’s important to know your own health limits to ensure you remain safe.
Because you’re interacting with the public frequently, technicians should go through this checklist throughout the work week to ensure absolute safety:
- Don’t meet if you’re showing any symptoms
- Hold any discussions outside when possible
- Maintain social distance best practices (don’t shake hands, keep distance, don’t share pens, paper, etc.)
With COVID-19 continuing to disrupt businesses across the country, it’s critical for HVAC technicians to tap into the resources available to them to ensure they are safe and remain healthy. As essential workers on the first line, it’s vital that all HVAC personnel remember these tips to continue providing essential services to help keep homes comfortable and safe.