Light commercial applications can be hard to come by. The winners of the HVAC Light Commercial Equipment category ofThe NEWS'third annual Dealer Design Awards offered products that not only address the needs of light commercial HVAC, but also improve on the offerings currently available. The gold winner, Honeywell's Commercial VisionPRO programmable thermostat brings a touch screen to the light commercial HVAC arena. The silver winner, Aprilaire's Dehumidifier Model 1720, brings flexibility in installation and maximum comfort.

GOLD: Honeywell's Commercial VisionPRO is a programmable commercial thermostat that features a touch screen interface ideal for commercial building occupants.


Honeywell's Commercial VisionPRO is a programmable commercial thermostat. It features an easy-to-use touch screen interface and is ideal for commercial building occupants, according to the company. The VisionPRO has override limits and set point stops that aid increased building efficiency and decreased building owner energy bills.

The unit controls up to 2H/2C for conventional equipment or 3H/2C for heat pumps. It can also enable or disable economizer systems and remotely control space temperature with a remote temperature sensor.

"This is an excellent product for small-and medium-size buildings with a holiday schedule," said one judge.

The thermostat helps save the contractor time and money by encompassing all of its applications within a single part number. It allows the contractor to only stock one thermostat, said the company.

"One stat covers all applications," commented one of the judges. "It's easy to install and easy to use n great product."

The touch screen interface aids quick installation and easy programming. Service calls can be reduced dramatically because the end user can be locked out from functions such as changing the schedule times or set points beyond a contractor defined limit, according to Honeywell.

"Honeywell has done a nice job with the VisionPRO series and has now expanded that effort to the commercial arena," said one judge. "It seems like a nice blend of keeping the control simple and straightforward, yet addressing most of the common needs of the commercial marketplace."

SILVER: Installation flexibility is a key feature in the Aprilaire Dehumidifier Model 1720.


Installation flexibility is a key feature in the Aprilaire Dehumidifier Model 1720. It can be ducted to pull inlet air from the return and discharge back into the supply of the system, it can draw inlet air from the space and discharge it back into the supply of the system, it can completely stand alone n operating in a localized space to control just that area, and it can be ducted in a zone configuration to control two independent areas.

The Model 1720 is designed to overcome total external static pressure of up to 1.5 inches wc, according to the company, and can be installed in any area where the ambient temperature is between 40˚ and 150˚F.

“This is a top of the line, easy to apply product,” noted one judge.

The unit features a 150 pint/day (6.5 lb/hr) rated capacity at 80˚ and 60 percent relative humidity. It has a factory charged and sealed refrigeration system, along with duct collars, a P trap assembly, built-in drain pan safety float terminal, and an integral thermal expansion valve that ensures maximum moisture removal against a variety of operating conditions.

“The float switch and dip settings are nice,” commented a judge.

Installation requires a standard 115/1/60 volt 20-amp circuit, a 1-inch outside dia-meter PVC drain line, and simple flexible ducting for basic installation. Service LEDs provide electrical diagnostics to the service technician. Maintenance is limited to cleaning the washable air filter, which can be accessed from either side of the cabinet.

“The 1720 offers many options for application and installation strategy for possible applications to humidity problems,” said one judge. “It is a large improvement over generic appliance-oriented dehumidifiers. It addresses improved comfort and IAQ concerns associated with excessive humidity conditions.”

Honorees: HVAC Light Commercial Equipment

Honeywell - - Commercial VisionPRO

Aprilaire - - Aprilaire Dehumidifier

Publication date: 07/17/2006