Most people working in the HVAC industry have been unable to travel for more than a year now due to the coronavirus pandemic. That means manufacturers have been unable to meet face-to-face with contractors and present their latest innovations. METUS executives decided to tackle that problem by taking their show on the road virtually.
The company made several online presentations the week of April 12 to show off its newest wares. These included an improved app, a branch circuit controller with pre-installed bulbs, and new settings for ductless units that address differing home designs.
The newest version of the Mitsubishi Electric MEView app allows contractors and homeowners to select the most appropriate model and location for an indoor unit using augmented reality technology to visualize the installation. Mike Smith, senior manager of marketing communications for METUS, said the app enhancements are the result of contractor feedback. One of the main issues with consumers is how the units will look when up on the wall.
“They’re looking to help homeowners at the kitchen table get past any initial concerns about aesthetics,” Smith said.
The app features the full suite of METUS products, including floor and ceiling units. It also allows contractors and homeowners to share renderings via text and email. In this case, showing is better than telling. The app is available in both the Apple and Android stores. Homeowners can download it on their own and check out different offerings in different parts of the house.
The Tall and The Small
Another enhancement to the METUS line-up addresses the issue that houses come in a wide variety of configurations. One of the biggest concerns with adding ductless retrofits is high ceilings, Smith said. Now many of the METUS units come with settings that control for the additional demands from their spaces. Smith said this was another result of seeking input from both contractors and homeowners.
On the commercial side, METUS is addressing the opposite issue. More and more customers are seeking solutions for small spaces. The PKFY wall-mounted indoor units are designed to deliver optimized comfort and efficiency in light commercial and commercial applications. They vary compressor motor speeds and capacity according to heating and cooling loads, so these systems use only the minimal amount of energy needed to maintain a zone’s desired set point.
Another major commercial innovation is the enhanced branch circuit controller. The heat exchanger is now available with pre-installed ball valves. By pre-installing the module’s ball valves, METUS made BC controller installation quicker and easier for HVAC contractors, lowering labor costs. The BC Controller assemblies are leak and pressure-tested to meet factory specifications, helping to ensure their integrity.
“When you’re dealing with 16 pairs of valves on a BC controller, having the pre-installed bubbles is nice,” Smith said.
In addition to addressing the needs of contractors, homeowners, and building operators, METUS is also doing its part to help out distributors. The company has extended its lineup of universal outdoor units. The three new sizes are 24,000, 30,000, and 36,000 Btuh.
In the past year, more distributors have had to adapt to e-commerce. That means more small shipments, placing warehouse space at a premium. Smith said that by offering more universal outdoor units, METUS provides distributors with the ability to offer one solution that works for a variety of projects.
METUS put together videos and extensive releases to provide information about these new offerings, but Smith and the rest of the executives look forward to a time when they can present this information in person. Right now, the AHR Expo is scheduled to take place Jan. 31 to Feb. 2 in Las Vegas.