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Copy provided by National Comfort Institute Inc.

High-performance HVAC contractors took center stage in Scottsdale, Arizona on March 28 as National Comfort Institute's (NCI) 18th Annual Summit got underway. Nearly 100 contractors, preferred partners, and other industry luminaries gathered after a three-year hiatus from in-person meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, the focus centered on the theme, “This Time, It's Personal.” Summit was open to the entire HVAC Industry, with the intent of shining a spotlight on likeminded people willing to share their high-performance experiences with peers.

This all-new approach allowed conference attendees to personalize their experience based on their knowledge and comfort level with each topic. In that light, each topic offered three options:

  • Novice: For those who are at the beginning of a specific discipline
  • Practitioner: For attendees who are practicing skills and want to take things up a notch or just need a refresher
  • Mastery: Contractors who choose this option are already proficient in a specific area and are looking to move to the next level.

Excitement radiated even during the pre-conference boot camp conducted by Goodman Air Conditioning and Heating and during the two recertification classes held by NCI on March 28. Then, it was three days of seminars, networking, and social events, followed by the yearly awards dinner and banquet.


The Workshops

Summit 2022 included 18 workshops taught in six sessions by high-performance HVAC expert trainers from National Comfort Institute. These sessions included:

  • Airflow diagnostics and air upgrade workshops
  • High-performance sales workshops
  • High-performance implementation
  • Take it to the next level with high-performance software
  • High-performance town workshops
  • Carbon monoxide and combustion workshops


Performance Town Returns

In addition to workshops, Summit 2022 also brought back Performance Town — the three-station, hands-on training on airflow, static pressure, and temperature measurement with live equipment and test instruments.

Attendees learned how to install test ports, where to perform measurements, and much more during the Performance Town workshops.


Games, Idea Sharing, and Coaching

The Opening General Session kicked off Tuesday morning, March 29. All attendees were treated to a rousing multimedia introduction, followed by an interactive game show called, "Reach for the Summit." All general sessions took place in the same room with the preferred partner trade show.

The game show began with selecting two random contractors from the audience to answer multiple-choice questions from real-world installation and service scenarios. The audience then had the opportunity to vote via the National Comfort Institute (NCI) Summit 2022 mobile app for the answer they thought was correct. The contractors earned points for correct answers, with the winner taking home a new NSI 6000 Low-Level CO Monitor.

Each question was followed up with commentary by David Holt and David Richardson, who discussed the merits of each answer and which way they felt the audience would vote. The winner was Dawn Mroczek of GV's Heating and Air Conditioning. Coming in second place was Will Horner of Canco ClimateCare. He received an Amazon gift card.

After the morning breakout workshops, contractors reconvened for the popular contractors-only Idea Meeting, hosted by Michael Greany of Aire Rite Air Conditioning and Refrigeration and Mike Weil of NCI. This meeting was divided into two 45-minute sessions: one dedicated to high-performance lead generation, the other one to sales.

Attendees presented their ideas on each topic and then voted for those they felt were the best. The winning ideas were from:

  • Lead generation: A tie between Earlene Marron of Airtech Air Conditioning and Chuck Worley of Worley Home Services.
  • Sales: Dawn Mroczek of GV’s Heating.


Partner Tradeshow

Eighteen exhibitors managed their table-top displays all around the general session ballroom, so contractors had the opportunity to talk with them during breaks and regularly scheduled tradeshow hours. Exhibitors also participated in NCI's annual Preferred Partner Prize Drawing. Attendees received "game cards" that had to be stickered by each exhibitor, then turned in to be eligible for the drawing.


State of the High-Performance HVAC Industry

Dominick Guarino.

OPENING: Dominick Guarino opens the NCI Summit 2022. (Courtesy of NCI)

Thursday morning, March 31, the morning general session was headlined by NCI CEO Dominick Guarino, who discussed the state of the high-performance HVAC industry and NCI's role in it.

 “The high-performance industry is growing. The term high-performance contractor is being used more and more within our industry — by other organizations, manufacturers, distributors, utilities, and even government agencies,” said Guarino. “Delivered performance is increasingly on the lips of many in the HVAC industry, as they see it as the next sea change that can make systems work better and save energy more than anything else we can do. Homeowners are increasingly seeking out companies that can help them solve long-standing performance issues.”


Mark Your Calendars

Mark your calendars for April 16-20, 2023. That is when Summit 2023 happens. The high-performance HVAC industry will descend upon the Ozark mountains at the Chateau on the Lake in Branson, Missouri.