Prior to celebrating National Indoor Comfort Week (April 18-24), we asked News readers to provide us with "The Top 10 Reasons Why The World Would Be In Trouble Without HVACR Professionals." We received some very revealing - and some very humble - answers.

Because space does not allow us to disclose each and every answer here, consider the following some of the "best of the best" replies. (A compilation of reader responses can be found in "Readers Provide Their Top 10 Reasons" in this issue.)

  • Bob Keingstein, vice president, Boss Facility Services, Inc.: (1) We increase the productivity in commercial office space and retail centers. (2) We provide comfortable living at home. (3) We provide the medical industry (hospitals) with clean operating room environments. (4) We provide the food industry the ability to store food for later distribution and use. (5) We provide healthy environments for people with allergies, etc. (6) We provide comfort while driving (automobile A/C). (7) We provide cooling to the computer industry, allowing computers to operate efficiently. (8) We provide cooling to the communications industry, allowing phone systems to operate. (9) We provide cooling to the manufacturing industry, allowing the manufacturing of products that require chilled water or cool air. (10) And, finally, as long as manufacturers are producing HVACR products, somebody has to repair them. Without the technician, none of the above is possible.

  • Norman Leifried, manager of technical services, Virginia Air of Carolina: (1) Energy consumption would be high due to improperly maintained equipment. (2) Major disease outbreaks would occur due, in part, to improper refrigeration temperatures being maintained. (3) Lawsuits would flourish, with manufacturers taking the hit because of improperly trained technicians. (4) Indoor air quality, in general, would be degraded to the point of spreading diseases. (5) New entries into our field would be minimal. (6) Without input from learned technicians, product development would be hit-or-miss. (7) Equipment failures due to inexperienced techs would create havoc.

  • Natalie Narce, service manager-Venezuela, The Trane Company: (1) The term "HVAC professional" encompasses a broad base of people, starting from the company manager, to the sales person, up to the service technician that repairs a unit. In these changing times, these professionals form a team of excellence that works in harmony towards a common goal: to serve the customer and offer him/her the best each team member has to give - ultimately, attaining excellence in performance.

  • Michael Slade, purchasing agent, A/C Service & Installation - Donelson Air Conditioning: (1) The most obvious answer is, of course, that comfort control would be nearly impossible, in both residential and commercial situations. It takes someone that knows what they are doing to properly size, install, balance, and maintain a comfort system in virtually any structure. (2) As our natural resources are depleted over time and utility costs rise, the need for more and more efficient systems and duct configurations also rise. It takes HVACR professionals to maximize the efficiency of the system they manufacture, install, and service to make the most of available resources in each and every application.

  • Richard Sisk, field operations manager, Peaden Air Conditioning: (1) Technology would not have grown at a rapid pace. (2) There would be more crime. (3) Fewer varieties of foods would be available. (4) We provide comfort year-round.

  • Stephan Cramer, AIS: (1) Without HVACR professionals, there would be no preventive maintenance. (2) Without HVACR professionals, the energy consumption from HVACR equipment would be higher. (3) Without HVACR professionals, we would have more people on sick leave. (4) Without HVACR professionals, health costs for the individual and the state would soar.

    While all above is true, we are just preaching to the choir here, aren't we? It's about time "our story" was recognized by the general public. Just like the successful "Got Milk?" ad campaign - which, in a clever way, brought public awareness to the importance of milk and dairy products - this industry needs a public relations boost.

    If you have any suggestions on how to accomplish this goal, please let us know.

    Mark Skaer is editor-in-chief. He can be reached at 248-244-6446, 248-362-0317 (fax), or markskaer@achrnews.com.

    Publication date: 05/17/2004