Page 1

April | May 2018

Five Things About Heat Pump Water Heaters page 30

The Sky's the Limit: Sonny Friedman & Atlas Plumbing page 12

Executive Profiles:

Focus on Kitchen & Bath Products

Bill Holder, Romeo Sy, Hans Kuster

page 6

pages 28, 29, 42

Change Service Requested Southern Trade Publications P.O. Box 7344 Greensboro, NC 27417

Nav i wateen NPE r he -A tan ater s wi kless th Pate recirnted int cula erna l tion Built syst -in in em s

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A l w a y s a s t e p a h e a d To request information, see page 47.

At Bradford White, we know the best way to ensure quality is with professional installation. Your success is critical to our success. We’re committed to the trade professional in everything we do. We listen to you, we design for you, we offer you 24/7 expert tech support, and we provide financing options for you to offer your customers.* We stand behind you every step of the way. Our business is being there for your business. See more at our website dedicated to pros like you -

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To request information, see page 47. BWPHSO0418

from the publisher Our metamorphosis continues … I am pleased to announce another addition to our editorial staff with the promotion of Natalie King to Director of Content for Southern PHC magazine,, and our social media outreach. Natalie graduated from UNC Greensboro with a bachelor’s degree in communication studies and business administration. She was tapped for the newly created position of Director of Content for Southern PHC for a number of reasons, not the least of which she’s smart as a whip. Beyond that, Natalie shares our vision of our metamorphosis from a respected industry publication to a multi-media outlet designed to deliver content to the next generation of plumbing, heating and cooling contractors. Natalie is uniquely qualified for this position as her role is considerably larger than her title indicates. In addition to identifying the content that you, our readers, want and need, she will focus on how best to deliver this content to you. Why is she uniquely qualified? Several family members have a deep breadth of knowledge in these areas, and she plans to take full advantage of this. Her dad, Todd King, has worked in commercial HVAC for nearly 30 years, chiefly with Chisholm Service based out of Burlington, N.C. Additionally, Natalie is getting married in June. Her fiance, Michael Forster, is an apprentice with Adam's Electric so she will have a front row seat to witnessing the challenges he faces learning the trade on a daily basis as well as his hopes and plans for advancement as he defines his ultimate career path. Natalie is deeply invested in the trade and brings a personal life experience to her role that is unique and special. Please welcome Natalie as she gets to know you and your business and feel free to reach out to her with story ideas or just to provide feedback. We like to hear from our readers. Natalie can be reached at

On the Cover… An employee of Bradford White assembles an AeroTherm heat pump water heater.

Have You Moved?

April | May 2018 Southern PHC is a bi-monthly publication devoted to the best interests of the plumbing, heating and air conditioning contractors and wholesalers in the South. News and articles from readers and friends are welcomed. Publisher Day Atkins Director of Content Natalie King Editor Jason Schneider Managing Editor T. W. Atkins Columnists Nido Qubein Matt Michel Ruth King Dean Petersen Graphic Designer Deborah Hosterman Web Administrator Mary Ann Guinn Accounting Manager Pam Spanolia Videographer/Photographer Stephen Kulin

For advertising information, call (336) 235-3084 Published by: Southern Trade Publications P.O. Box 7344 Greensboro, NC 27417 336-235-3084 / 877-496-0676 FAX CEO Trudy Walton Atkins President Day Atkins SPHC is dedicated to serving contractors and wholesalers in the 14 southern states from Texas to Virginia.

Please send your new address to Southern Trade Publications with the old mailing label Subscription Rates for Non-qualified Subscribers: Single Issue $2, One Year $10, Two Years $18 Published Bi-Monthly by Southern Trade Publications, Greensboro, N.C. POSTMASTER — Please forward change of address notices to Southern Trade Publications P.O. Box 7344 Greensboro, NC 27417

4 Southern PHC | Volume 72 No. 2

table of contents

April | May 2018

features Focus on Kitchen & Bath Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 The Sky's the Limit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Strong Support: Women in HVACR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Five Things About Water Heaters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30


30 20




An Advertising Investment That Shocked a Contractor by Ruth King . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Industry News . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Grow or Die by Matt Michel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Do You Have Soft Skills? Take Inventory. by Dean Petersen. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 How to Inspire Others to Peak Performance by Nido Qubein . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Executive Profiles: Bill Holder and Romeo Sy, LG Air Conditioning Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28-29 Executive Profile: Hans Kuster, President/Owner, AquaMotion. . . . . . . . . 42 Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 PHCC News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Southern PHC | 5

focus on

kitchen & bath products American Standard Bidet Seats Offer Personal Cleansing Options The new Advanced Clean SpaLet bidet seat collection from American Standard offers a choice of control options, including two independent, self-cleaning nozzles with adjustable water spray strength and temperature, massage spray force, and seat heating; an activated charcoal deodorizer; and an elongated, slow-close seat and lid that detach for thorough cleaning.

Sans Hands Automated Faucet Technology From Sonoma Forge Redefines Touchless Hand Washing Sans Hands Sensor Faucets from Sonoma Forge are available using spouts from the WherEver series, the CiXX collection, and the Strap line. They come in wall- and deck-mount configurations and are available in an array of finishes, including special order. A suite of coordinating bath accessories, including decorative hardware, towel bars, tissue holders, mirror mounts, and more is also available.

“Awareness of the importance of water conservation and water quality nationwide has been on the rise. Product manufacturers are engineering products that provide a great user experience at a lower flow rate (sometimes with an imperceptible difference),” says Katie Hayes, senior product manager, Danze by Gerber. “We continue to add lower flow rates to our assortment to meet the demands of the market, while continuing to offer flexibility to our customers.” 6 Southern PHC |

Pivotal Kitchen Collection from Delta Offers Modern Styling Delta’s Pivotal Collection embodies modern styling and addresses the growing desire for minimal contemporary design, angular lines and re-imagined water delivery in the kitchen. The collection features three spout options—pull-out, pull down, and Delta’s first exposed hose—limited 120-degree swivel, and various height and finish options, as well as Delta’s Touch2O Technology, DIAMOND Seal Technology and MagnaTite Docking (on pull-downs).

“Today, consumers are looking for a faucet that’s part faucet/part assistant; they expect increased functionality and versatility to match the various activities happening in the kitchen—a room that is now the centerpiece of the home,” says Peggy Gallagher, product manager, Delta Faucet. “Because of this newly placed importance on the kitchen, it’s really important to have the right faucet as it relates to both functionality and style.”

Hansgrohe Introduces New Metropol Collection The Metropol collection from Hansgrohe features three different lavatory faucet heights within the series, as well as several different handles, spout heights, and configurations. The entire lavatory range integrates Hansgrohe’s EcoRight feature, resulting in a low flow rate of 1.2 GPM. The models are equipped with the QuickClean feature and finishes include chrome and brushed nickel.

Southern PHC | 7

focus on

kitchen & bath products

Industrial-inspired Align from Moen Offers Contemporary Look With the rise of incorporating dark accents throughout the home, this popular, industrial-inspired Moen Align spring kitchen faucet is now available in a Matte Black finish. Its contemporary look complements a variety of décor choices.

Saniflo Sanistar Saves Space and Water

The one-piece, wall-hung Sanistar Macerating Toilet System from SFA Saniflo Inc. combines a macerating pump and an electronically activated flushing mechanism into a single package. Measuring 18 inches wide and 20-1/2 inches deep and with no external water tank, Sanistar saves water

by using only 1.1 gallons per flush. In addition to disposing of waste from the toilet, the macerator inside can also pump water away from a nearby hand basin.

MTI Baths New Freestanding Tub Models Offer a Smaller Footprint MTI Baths offers two new tub models that will retrofit in a 66” alcove. The new Elise 230 and Alissa 231 are offered in white or biscuit, matte or gloss finish, and are available as a soaking tub or therapeutic air bath. Both are constructed of MTI’s one-piece SculptureStone material, which is 100 percent solid, non-porous, and stain, mold, and mildew-resistant. 8 Southern PHC |





Moen’s MotionSense Wave Offers Touch-free Technology Moen’s MotionSense Wave touchless technology allows users to easily activate the faucet with the wave of a hand. Fixtures with this technology also help minimize the spread of dirt and germs.

New Quartz Luxe Colors Coming this Summer from Elkay

Elkay is launching two new Quartz Luxe colors this summer to address a market demand of blues and grays for the trend-conscious homeowner. The deep blue Jubilee and metallic-flecked Silvermist

r & finishes

“A popular trend that we foresee in 2018 is the utilization of fun pops of color in unconventional ways, such as the kitchen sink,” says Derek Voight, director of product development, Elkay. ““Kitchen and bath products have changed drastically over the years with major innovations to the style and customization options that are now offered. Homeowners can change and customize their kitchen sinks now more than ever before, whether that be the color, material, or functionality aspect.” “Today, homeowners and designers alike are going for the gold, as an old style gets a contemporary upgrade,” says Scott Jackson, senior product manager, Kitchen, Wholesale, for Moen. “In the past, gold fixtures have been associated with traditional design, but now, the finish is also being incorporated into homes with a modern aesthetic, for a fresh take on a classic finish.”

are designed for superior strength, combining function and fashion. Southern PHC | 9

focus on

kitchen & bath products

Gerber Introduces Top-of-the-Line Avalanche Elite Toilet Gerber has introduced the Avalanche Elite family of toilets, featuring a modernized contemporary design with a “simple” semiconcealed trapway (CT). The streamlined, compact intake and rim design helps channel water at a higher speed, which adds force to help scrub off stains and toilet paper, and has 50 percent more line carry than the national standard, ensuring there are no hidden clogs under the toilet or in the pipes.

ICERA Restyles the Palermo II with a Fresh Modern Vibe The updated Palermo II from Icera is a two-piece that features a compact elongated bowl that is chair-height for ADA compliance and includes a Silent-Close quick-release seat and cover. With Icera’s EcoQUATTRO flushing system, it requires just 1.28 gallons per flush.

“Younger homeowners (age 35 and under) are significantly entering the existing homebuying market and need to update their bathrooms,” says Lovin Saini, senior product manager, Gerber. “This new generation of buyers tends to like more modern decor and styles, clean lines, and is internet-savvy: They know how to shop for great-looking products at competitive prices and pay close attention to ratings and evaluations to aid in their purchase decision.”

Danze Adds Selene Pull-Down to Kitchen Faucet Lineup Danze, Inc., has added a new option to its existing offerings of kitchen faucets—the Selene Pull-Down Kitchen Faucet. Selene offers a two-function spray head (spray and stream) that operates at a water efficient rate of 1.75 gallons per minute and features new proprietary, patented magnetic docking technology to keep the spray head consistently tight to the spout.

10 Southern PHC |

SMOOTH EDGES TIGHT CONNECTIONS CHAMFERING & DEBURRING TOOLS • Create a smooth, burr-free pipe end for pipe joining. • Great additions for a ready-to-go toolbox.



DEB2 Cone Deburring Tool Versatile shape allows for deburring inside and outside plastic pipe. Suitable for PVC, CPVC, ABS, PE and PP. 1/8" – 2" (3 – 60 mm)

DEB200 Deburring Tool Inner/Outer

Deburrs inner and outer diameters on water service lines, copper pipe installations, plumbing lines, radiant heating and gas lines. 3/8" – 2" CTS, 3/8" – 1-1/2" IPS (10 – 54 mm)

DEB1IPS Deburring Tool

Offers knurled grip for slip resistance and durable aluminum body for longevity. Deburr and chamfer in the same rotation. Suitable for PVC, CPVC, PE, ABS and PP. 1/2", 3/4", 1"

PDEB250 Cone Chamfer Tool

Cone shape chamfers full range of plastic pipe sizes. Power or manual operation for PE, PVC, CPVC, PEX, ABS and PP. Works great for PE water service lines. 3/4" – 2-1/2" (40 – 75 mm)

DEB4 Deburring Tool

Deburr and chamfer in the same rotation. Provides external chamfer/bevel on plastic pipe. Suitable for PVC, CPVC, ABS and PP. 1-1/4", 1-1/2", 2", 2-1/2", 3", 4"

Check with Reed for other available sizes.

DEB1-2IPS Deburring Tool Integrated shaft for drill power operation. Slip-resistant, knurled grip for manual operation. Deburr and chamfer in the same rotation. Suitable for PVC, CPVC, PE, ABS and PP. Three sizes of pipe accommodated per tool. 1-1/4", 1-1/2", 2"

Reed Manufacturing • Erie, PA USA • To request information, see page 47.

Southern PHC | 11 0318SPHC

The Sky’s the Limit Sonny Friedman has seen a lot of changes and found new opportunities in his 50-plus years in plumbing by Jason Schneider Sonny Friedman (right) with his son, Ben.

12 Southern PHC |

He had planned to go into dentistry. He applied to dental school, but wasn’t accepted. “Something about grades,” says Sonny Friedman, owner of Atlas Plumbing Company in Dallas. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, he did two things: married his high school sweetheart, Carolyn, and took a job with a plumbing company. “I began my plumbing career as an apprentice plumber and ‘ditch-digger supreme’ at a plumbing company that was owned by my wife’s grandfather,” he says. Friedman learned that he was going to be drafted. “The Vietnam War was in high gear, and I knew that Vietnam was no place for me, so I joined the Navy,” he said. “Luckily I found a Naval Air Reserve unit near Dallas.” When one door closes … At a naval air station outside Memphis, Tenn., Friedman was trained as an anti-submarine warfare electronics equipment operator, to serve as a crew

member on an airplane whose mission was to locate and destroy enemy submarines. The Navy offered him the opportunity to go to Officer Candidate School, followed by flight school. “I have always loved airplanes, and the long-range plan of staying in the Navy for eight years as a pilot, then becoming a highly paid airline pilot seemed a lot cooler than digging ditches,” he says. He returned to Dallas after training to find that the plumbing company where he had been working was experiencing financial problems. “Carolyn was not enamored with the idea of being a Navy wife for eight years, and with good reason—it’s not for everyone,” he says. “So I declined the offers of becoming a Top Gun pilot. One door closes, another door opens … along comes the Atlas Plumbing offer.” Business owner A friend of Friedman’s in-laws owned Atlas Plumbing Company and was

ready to retire. “He offered to sell it to us, so my brother-in-law, who was graduating from Southern Methodist University with a degree in business, and I became the owners of Atlas Plumbing Company in September 1967,” he says. Joe, Friedman’s brother-in-law, stayed with the company until 1971. “The bank and I bought his interest in Atlas and I became the sole owner of a very old and very reputable, but small, plumbing service business,” he says. Friedman went to the local PlumbingHeating-Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) apprentice school, then tested and received his Master Plumber license (now called a Responsible Master license). A changing industry Looking back over his more than 50 years in plumbing, Friedman has seen a lot of changes in the industry. “Two-way radios in the trucks was a new device at the time I became the owner of Atlas continued on page 44

A t t i t u d e, Not Altitude Challenge Air opens a world of possibilities to special needs children For 25 years, Sonny Friedman of Atlas Plumbing Company in Dallas has been a part of Challenge Air for Kids and Friends, an organization that takes special needs children on flights—and lets them, at altitude, take the controls. It all began with Friedman’s best friend, Rick Amber, a Navy fighter pilot who flew Mach 2 jets off aircraft carriers. Returning from his 109th mission in Vietnam, Amber crashed into the carrier. “Rick lived through the explosion, but his ejection from the plane slammed him into the superstructure of the carrier and he broke his back at shoulder height, requiring him to live the rest of his life in a wheelchair,” he says. “A fighter pilot is a fighter pilot is a fighter pilot, only at an altitude of three feet instead of 30,000 feet. “‘Success is about attitude, not altitude,’” Friedman adds. Amber got back into aviation in 1990. “He was working with kids in wheelchairs, teaching them how to play tennis, and asked the kids’ parents if he could take them up in a rented Cessna,” says Friedman. “At altitude, he let the kids fly the plane.” And Challenge Air was born. “‘You just flew an airplane, something you never dreamed that you could do. Now, what else can you do?’ That’s the mission on which Rick founded Challenge Air for Kids and

Friends,” says Friedman. “Rick lived a great life until cancer took him from us in 1997, but I promised him that we would carry it on. We formed a Board of Trustees and hired an executive director.” Today, each special needs child is allowed to take two friends with them on the flight to share the experience. There is no cost to the families—the organization is dependent on donations from individuals, businesses, and foundations. There are 16 Fly Day events at airports across the country, and to date, Challenge Air has flown more than 34,000 continued on page 44 Southern PHC | 13


A. O. Smith’s Barb VanderMolen Recognized with Women in Manufacturing STEP Ahead Award Barbara L. VanderMolen, A. O. Smith vice president-finance for North America Water Heaters, will be recognized by The Manufacturing Institute with a Women in Manufacturing STEP (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Production) Ahead Award on April 10. The STEP Ahead Awards honor women who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in their careers and represent all levels of the manufacturing industry, from the factory-floor to the C suite. VanderMolen joined A. O. Smith in 2008 as director of financial planning and analysis for the former Water Products Company. She was recently appointed to the advisory committee of the A. O. Smith Women’s Resource Network, an initiative created to further develop women’s talents and leadership capabilities. In 2016, she was recognized in the Supply House Times

Women in Industry Top 20, in addition to earning the Nashville CFO award by the Nashville Business Journal in 2015. “I am honored and grateful to receive this STEP Award, but I know that business or personal success cannot be achieved alone. I am proud to work for a fantastic company that attracts and retains many talented people,” says VanderMolen. “And with our development initiatives at A. O. Smith, including the Women’s Resource Network, I am hopeful that more employees from our organization will be recognized in the future.” VanderMolen is the second A. O. Smith employee to receive a STEP Ahead award. Carol Peters, directoroperations at the company’s Johnson City, Tenn., plant, was recognized with a STEP Ahead award in 2013 in her previous role as production manager.

RectorSeal Names Burgess Sales as HVACR Rep of the Year–2017 at AHR Expo RectorSeal named manufacturer’s representative agency Burgess Sales LLC of Madison, Miss., as HVACR Rep of the Year–2017 at the 2018 AHR Expo in Chicago. The 15-year-old Burgess Sales, which operates in the Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and western Tennessee territories, improved sales by developing programs for wholesale distributors that streamlined purchasing, inventory management, and sales training for RectorSeal’s comprehensive product line of minisplit accessories, and making it a “one-stop shop,” according to Steve Burgess, co-partner and founder. Also receiving an award was Wesley Congleton, representative for United Components of Coatesville, Pa., who received the Top Sales Representative in recognition of outstanding achievement in revenue growth and territory management. H.W. “Russ” Tuttle III, president, Tuttco, Hilton Head, S.C., received the Special Recognition for Lifetime Achievement for working at a superb level of professionalism and leadership while representing RectorSeal the past 30 years. Ron McLaughlin, principal, Ron McLaughlin Associates, Largo,

14 Southern PHC |

Fla., was presented the Dennis Morgan Spirit of RectorSeal award for exhibiting high integrity and contagious enthusiasm for RectorSeal’s employees and customers. Left to right: Chad Taylor, William Hays, and Steve Burgess, co-partners at Burgess Sales LLC, Madison, Miss., received RectorSeal’s HVACR Rep of the Year–2017 from Sean Holloway, national sales manager–HVAC, RectorSeal.

Copyright © Liberty Pumps, Inc. 2018 All rights reserved.

To request information, see page 47. Southern PHC | 15


Taco Presents Dan Holohan Comfort Award at 2018 AHR Expo Bruce Marshall, formerly lead trainer at Emerson Swan, was presented the Dan Holohan Lifetime Contribution to Comfort Award at Taco Comfort Solutions’ press conference at the AHR Expo on Monday, January 22, by John Hazen White, Jr., Executive Chairman of the Board of Taco Family of Companies, and Wil VandeWiel, CEO of Taco Family of Companies. Marshall is the third recipient of the award, and is recognized for his commitment to education and passion for training. He joined Emerson Swan in 2005, and by the time he retired at the end of 2017, Marshall had trained tens of thousands of contractors, wholesalers, and sales representatives. The Dan Holohan Lifetime Contribution to Comfort Award is given annually to an HVAC professional or company that has made a substantial contribution to comfort technology, advancement, or training while displaying the exceptional good humor and love of people exhibited by Dan Holohan throughout his long career. Past award winners include Dan Holohan and Robert Bean. Bruce Marshall, on left, receives the Dan Holohan Lifetime Contribution to Comfort Award from John Hazen White, Jr., Executive Chairman of the Board of Taco Family of Companies, at Taco’s AHR Expo booth on Jan. 22, 2018.

O’Reilly Named President of Fluke Digital Systems David O’Reilly has been named by Fluke Corporation as president of Fluke Digital Systems, the business unit that manages the Fluke Accelix ecosystem of connected tools and solutions. As president, he will lead the team to develop new solutions that harness the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to integrate the wireless monitoring of industrial equipment health with computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS), and supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems to improve reliability and uptime.

Steven Malm Named NIBCO Chief Executive Officer Steven Malm has been named chief executive officer by the Board of Directors of NIBCO INC. Malm continues to serve as president and a member of the board. Rex Martin remains as chairman of the board, a position he has held since 1995. Malm’s career in the building construction industry spans more than 35 years. His experience includes leadership in international business, mergers and acquisitions, and general management.

ACCA Announces Staff Changes, Expansion

16 Southern PHC |

Bardtreau Named Vice President of Sales for Matco-Norca, SVF Flow Controls Scott Bardreau has been promoted to Vice President of Sales for MatcoNorca and its sister company, SVF Flow Controls. Going forward, all regional managers of both companies will report to Bardreau.

$ !



To request information, see page 47.

People T&S Hires Greg Morgan as IT Manager Greg Morgan has been hired as IT manager for T&S Brass and Bronze Works. He will lead the design, development, and support of enterprise business solutions for T&S. He is responsible for a team of IT professionals who maintain the T&S network infrastructure across three facilities on two continents and ensure T&S customers have uninterrupted access to information.

Gruber Is AquaMotion’s New National Sales Manager Rich Gruber has joined AquaMotion, Inc. as the new National Sales Manager. In this position, he will be in charge of the company’s network of 20 sales representatives, OEM sales, and wholesaler customers.

Haider Joins ICE AIR as Sales Engineer Zeshan Haider has been appointed Sales Engineer at ICE AIR. In this position, Haider will work on upgrading information that feeds Hi-Spec software, ICE AIR's new collaboration program for engineers and customers. He will also work closely with customers on projects. Southern PHC | 17

People Myers Promoted to Operations & Compliance Manager with Thermostat Recycling Corp. Danielle Myers has been promoted to Operations & Compliance Manager with Thermostat Recycling Corp. She will be responsible for administrative and operations functions, while managing the processing facility’s performance, reporting on issues, and maintaining regulatory compliance.

T&S Brass Expands Customer Service Team to Increase Accessibility

Jossart Joins Uponor to Lead Operations at Hutchinson Facility

Matt Sopko is the new Californiabased customer service representative for T&S Brass and Bronze Works. With this newly added position, T&S has extended its phone, email, and online chat customer service availability to cover 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time.

Paul Jossart has been chosen by Uponor North America as senior manager, Operations, for the company’s Hutchinson, Minn., expansion. A 20year resident of Hutchinson, Jossart will be responsible for operations at the Hutchinson facility.

Elder Joins ICE AIR as New Director of Business Development

Bryant K. Elder has been appointed new director of Business Development for ICE AIR. Elder will be responsible for helping lead ICE AIR sales by executing strategies that facilitate long-term customer relationships with targeted customers. He will be involved in planning, forecasting, and managing the process of the customer experience. 18 Southern PHC |

Painter Named Flint & Walling National Sales Manager Ben Painter has been promoted to National Accounts Manager–Wholesale at Flint & Walling, a wholly owned subsidiary of Zoeller Company. He will be accountable for the management of several national accounts, as well as management and support of the current wholesale sales team.

People Seresco Awards Havtech as its 2017 Rep of the Year, Names 11 Quota Buster Reps at AHR Expo Seresco USA Inc. presented manufacturer's representative Havtech, of Columbia, Md., with its 2017 Rep of the Year award at the 2018 AHR Expo in Chicago. Havtech recorded a 384 percent sales increase in its Washington DC and Baltimore area territories over last year. CEO Norm Long attributes the 31-year-old firm’s success last year to several projects, including the Jewish Community Center (JCC) of Northern Virginia in Fairfax, Va. The JCC renovated its facility into a cutting-edge aquatic area that included a 20-ton Seresco NP-Series Protocol dehumidifier that environmentally uses up to 75 percent less refrigerant than conventional mechanical models. Seresco also gave Quota Buster awards to 11 manufacturer’s rep firms that helped Seresco record a 34 percent increase over 2016. Quota Busters were Kilmer Environmental, Mississauga, Ontario; Qualite Air Totale Inc. (QAT), Laval, Quebec; Gardiner, Solon, Ohio; Hahn-Mason Air Systems Inc., Charlotte, N.C.; Midwest Mechanical Solutions, Golden Valley, Minn.; ThermalNetics, Auburn Hills, Mich.; Marsh Specialty HVAC, Black Diamond, Alberta; Hobbs and Associates, Virginia Beach, Va.; Texas AirSystems, Dallas; The Master Group, Boucherville, Quebec; and McQueeny Group, Overland Park, Kan.

Left to right: Columbia, Md.-based Havtech’s Norm Long, principal/CEO; Dick Shafer, vice president; and Joseph Roetering, principal/president, received 2017 Rep of the Year honors from Seresco USA’s Mark Palitza (second from left), national sales manager, at the 2018 AHR Expo in Chicago.

Uponor Names Chad Meyer Senior Director, Intelligent Water Chad Meyer has been appointed to the newly created position of senior director, Intelligent Water, with Uponor North America. Meyer will lead the commercialization of the new Phyn Plus smart water assistant + shutoff, and reports to Dena Mayne, vice president of Marketing and Customer Experience, Uponor North America. "Phyn Plus is the first of many antici-

pated launches into the intelligent water category for us,” says Mayne. “Beyond bringing Phyn Plus successfully to market this spring through our new Uponor Pro Squad, Chad will also create a longterm strategic roadmap focused on partnership, technologies and services that will help define Uponor as a leader in intelligent water solutions for consumers and our industry.”

Duravit Welcomes Galen Stump as Vice President Technical Sales & Service Galen Stump has joined Duravit USA as vice president Technical Sales & Service. In this role, he will promote relationships with mechanical representatives, build rapport between sales and service, and oversee new product development. He will also establish service networks, curate training content for Duravit USA’s sales teams, and maintain a high level of service operation.

Southern PHC | 19

Strong Support Women in HVACR scholarship provides opportunities for students like Samantha Hacker Samantha Hacker of Middle River, Md., is a recipient of a 2017 scholarship awarded by Women in HVACR, an organization that furthers the growth of women in all aspects of the HVACR industry and provides networking opportunities, mentoring, and education. For more information, visit 20 Southern PHC |

Southern PHC talked with Samantha about the scholarship, her interest in HVACR, and her plans for the future. How did you first become interMy sister has helped me with my ested in HVACR? overall confidence. When I first started When I was four years old, my dad at Stone Services, I would often get opened an HVACR business named upset if I walked into a situation where Stone Services, Inc. For the first few I was ignored or talked down to. I now years, the business was run out of the enter those situations with confidence basement. Eventually, an office was and receive respect in return. acquired. My sister and I were taken to How did you learn about Women service calls and meetings before and in HVACR and its scholarship opafter school. In the beginning, my mom portunities? worked a full-time job during the day I was searching for scholarship opbut did administration work for Stone portunities online and put the keywords Services in the evening. On most days "Scholarship" and "HVACR." I saw the we were at the office until 9 p.m. Women in HVACR website, clicked on My childhood consisted of coloring the scholarship page and saw that I qualwith technicians as they waited to be ified for the scholarship. I began looking dispatched, answering phone calls, filing through the rest of the website and knew paperwork, and accompanying my dad I wanted to be a part of the organization. on service calls. I grew up in the HVACR I found an organization that has industry. A few months after I graduated strong, independent women who face from high school, Stone Services was the same struggles and challenges that in need of an administrative assistant. I I experience within the industry. Women agreed to help for a few months, but my in the industry have to support each othambition was to become a psychologist. er, not tear each other down. Women in Three years have passed and I am still at HVACR provides me with a strong supStone Services. I fell in love with the work port system that I didn't realize I needed. and became good at it. What school are you attending? Do you have any mentors or role What is your course of study? models? If so, who are they and how In December 2017, I graduated from have they helped you? I am blessed enough to Samantha with her parents and sister. have three role models. My dad built Stone Services, Inc. from the ground up. He had a family to support, but still took a leap of faith and believed in himself. If he can beat the odds, I believe that I can do anything I set my mind to. My mom has stuck by my dad's side through everything. It's not easy to work with family, and she has worked with her husband for 17 years. There are days where I question if working with my family is something I can handle, but my mom centers me and gives me the strength to move forward.

The Community College of Baltimore County with an associate degree. I am currently in my first semester at Stevenson University in Owings Mills, Md. I am planning to obtain a bachelor's degree in Business Administration. What are your plans after school? What are your ultimate career goals? After school, I plan to work in the HVACR industry, whether it is for Stone Services, vendors, manufacturers, etc. I enjoy administration work. There is an array of options pertaining to administrative work and I hope to explore each one throughout my career. In your opinion, what are some ways to get younger people, and women in particular, interested in trade careers such as HVACR? For many years, attending college was seen as something everyone should do. In the past few years, trade careers have been making a comeback. I think people have realized that college is not for everyone. I believe that shop classes and basic HVACR, electrician, and automotive classes should be available to both male and female high school students. If someone has never been exposed to something, how would they know if they have a passion for it? What is the best advice, career-wise or otherwise, that you’ve been given so far? The best advice I have ever received is, "Finish what you started, no matter how long it takes." I am a semester behind in school, pushing my graduation date to December 2019. At first, I was devastated, but I have learned that it doesn't matter if someone finishes something in four years, 10 years, or even 60 years—they still finish, and in the end, that's all that matters. Southern PHC | 21

Industry News Navien Celebrates 1 Million Condensing Units Sold On January 4, Navien an eco-conscious company focused on energy-saving and efficient condensing products, reached the milestone of selling 1 million condensing units. “The energy savings of 1 million condensing units operating in North America since 2009 vs. non-condensing units sold by other manufacturers, would be roughly equivalent to planting 645,000,000 trees,” said Eric Moffroid, vice president, Sales & Marketing, Navien. The company’s core products are tankless water heaters, combi-boilers and boilers sold exclusively through wholesale distribution. Navien held a celebration of its accomplishment on January 25 for all employees. Joon Kee Hong, CEO and president of KD Navien worldwide, referenced the company’s NPE Series tankless water heaters and NCB combo-boiler series in his remarks: ”Despite the level of competition, as well as being a product that was unfamiliar to the market due to its no previously existing market sector, Navien America successfully broke down these barriers with the great support from all of the customers and partners in America.” Xplore, a local California “hip hop” martial arts group, concluded the evening with a performance using the flags of South Korea and North America.

Left to right: Heung-Rak Sohn; Martha Pugeda, Navien’s longest American employee; Scott Lee, NA CEO; Eric Moffroid, vice president, Sales & Marketing; Joon Kee Hong, CEO Worldwide; Jaeyong Lee, Head of Global Business.

State Water Heaters back with Daytona 500 Winner Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing in 2018 State Water Heaters has expanded its partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing in 2018 with the team’s No. 41 car driven by 2017 Daytona 500 winner Kurt Busch sporting the State Water Heaters black and orange paint scheme in two races. State Water Heaters will serve as the primary sponsor of Busch’s No. 41 Ford Fusion for the Federated Auto Parts 400 on September 22 at Richmond Raceway and the AAA Texas 500 on November 4 at Texas Motor Speedway. The company will also serve as an associate sponsor throughout the 2018 season with the State Water Heaters logo appearing in a major associate location on the car and on the chest of Busch’s fire suit each week. “The plumbing contractors, wholesalers, and builders who work with State Water Heaters take pride in seeing our brand on race days, and it’s exciting for us to help connect them to the action,” said Jeff Storie, director of marketing for State. This year will mark State Water Heaters’ sixth year partnering with Stewart-Haas 22 Southern PHC |

Racing, co-owned by three-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Tony Stewart and Haas Automation founder Gene Haas. It’s State Water Heaters’ fifth year with Busch, the 2004 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion. State Water Heaters has been an active racing sponsor since 2006.

A. O. Smith to Close Renton Commercial Water Heater Plant A. O. Smith Corporation will discontinue manufacturing at its Renton, Wash., commercial water heater plant effective June 15. The 101,000-square-foot Renton plant manufactures commercial gas and electric specialty water heaters, hot water storage tanks, electric boilers, and skid-mounted systems. The facility employs approximately 55 people. The company will transfer production of commercial electric water heaters and storage tanks and boilers to its McBee, S.C., and Lebanon, Tenn., plants. Over time, the customer service function will be consolidated into the company’s existing customer care facility in Ashland City, Tenn. Employees will be offered severance benefits, and the company will fully fund the facility’s two pension plans.

Management & Marketing

An Advertising Investment That Shocked a Contractor By Ruth King

Ruth King is a management consultant and trainer to the plumbing and HVAC industry. To purchase Ruth’s new book, The Courage to be Profitable, visit

Because he didn't think it would work ... and it did. telephone started ringing at about 9:25 a.m. We could track the phone calls to the radio ads. They paid for

It doesn't matter what you think about your marketing and advertising–it matters what your customers think.

Several years ago I was working with a contractor in his 30s. His business was on Hilton Head Island—a community with a large population of very wealthy individuals. People on the island were either working class or rich—very little middle class. There was one radio station, WLOW, which was called the “50 to Dead” station because it played big band era music—popular with the wealthy individuals at the time. The signal reached all of Hilton Head Island and not much farther. Ads were very inexpensive since it was not the most popular radio station on the island. It was the radio station that wealthy people listened to. It was a perfect advertising medium for that HVAC company.

I suggested to the owner of that company that his company sponsor the Thursday morning 9:20 a.m. stock market report on WLOW for a year. After all, his customers had stocks and they were interested in finding out how the market was doing. He told me that I was [expletive] crazy because he never listened to that station nor would he ever listen to that station. My answer: It doesn’t matter if you ever listen to it, YOUR TARGET MARKET DOES. So, despite his misgivings, he signed a contract for a year’s advertising. What happened? The advertisements aired every Thursday morning at 9:20 a.m. right during the stock market report. His

themselves and much more. At the end of the contract year he signed another contract … even though he didn’t listen to that station. Moral of the story: It doesn’t matter whether you like an ad, a direct mail piece, or any other marketing piece. You are NOT the target audience. Your customers are. Find the message (get help from a professional) and medium that your target audience will pay attention to and test some ads. They may work even if you don’t like them. Remember: It doesn’t matter what you think about your marketing and advertising—it matters what your customers think. They will vote with their phone calls, emails, and pocketbook. Ruth King is the author of The Courage to be Profitable. For more information, visit or email

Southern PHC | 23

Industry News Milwaukee Tool Proposes Expansion of Brookfield, Wis., Headquarters

With a planned total investment of $32 million, Milwaukee Tool has proposed another major expansion at their global new product development center in Brookfield, Wis.

A 114,500-square-foot, multistory building would be built on an existing 3.5 acre lot owned by Milwaukee Tool, bringing their global headquarters space from 190,000 square feet, originally, to a proposed total of 504,500 square feet. Over the last several years, Milwaukee Tool has experienced rapid growth, expanding employment at its Brookfield campus from just over 300 jobs in 2011 to almost 1,300 this year. This expansion would lead to the creation of 350 additional new jobs in the next five years, with an average annual salary of $75,000. “We must grow or die. We are committed to delivering a world-class work environment to attract, retain, and recruit the best talent in the world,” said Steve Richman, Milwaukee Tool Group President. “This investment is necessary for Milwaukee Tool to continue to deliver disruptive innovation and deliver on our commitment to users and distribution partners in driving productivity on the jobsite.”

Rheem Collaborates with SoCalGas to Test First Certified Ultra-Low NOx Furnace Rheem will work with Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) to obtain a third-party review of the new Rheem Ultra-Low NOx residential gas furnace. The furnace is the first to be certified under Rule 1111 by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), the air pollution agency responsible for regulating stationary sources of air pollution in the greater Los Angeles area. SCAQMD created the mandate to reduce nitrogen oxide (NOx) in natural gas-fired, fan-type central furnaces from 40 nanograms per joule to 14 nanograms per joule. The new Rheem Ultra-Low NOx furnace has met the expected NOx emissions reductions and will decrease NOx emissions by 65 percent. “Our Ultra NOx furnace got the thumbs up to be compliant with Rule 1111, but we also think it’s important to get first-hand validation from a gas utility company in California,

where the mandate will be required,” said Ryan Teschner, product manager, furnaces, Rheem. “SoCalGas has a gas engineering team to give our Ultra NOx furnace a thorough inspection in their state of the art lab.” The furnace will not only be tested with engineers and HVAC contractors at SoCalGas facilities, but it will also undergo field trials in up to 15 homes in Southern California. “Rheem has pushed the envolope on lowering emissions for this furnace line,” said Teschner. “Rule 1111 created a major challenge for our industry. It took a team of Rheem engineers five-years to come up with a solution to lower emissions from 40 to 14 nanograms per joule, but we surpassed that mark and are excited to get it on the market soon.” The Rheem Ultra-Low NOx Gas Furnace will be released before the proposed Rule 1111 compliance date.

ServiceWhale & Bradford White Team Up to Improve the Way Homeowners Shop for Plumbing/HVAC Contractor Services Bradford White Corporation has unveiled a joint online solution with ServiceWhale, the first online marketplace with instant quotes on major home improvement projects, that will make Bradford White the first major manufacturer in the space to make ServiceWhale’s instant quoting technology available through its online contractor directory. The partnership allows Bradford White installing contractors to deliver real, custom quotes to homeowners shopping for water heater replacements automatically online. This collaboration acknowledges evolving consumer behaviors and that manufacturers are expanding the ways they can help their professional contracting customers better cater 24 Southern PHC |

to their own online-savvy customers who need plumbing/ HVAC services. Contractors who agree to license ServiceWhale’s quoting technology as a part of a paid Advanced Profile will also have access to several lead generation tools for online communication with homeowners. Furthermore, ServiceWhale will grant rights to those contractors to implement the quoting platform into their own native websites. Contractors benefit by greatly reducing the amount of time and money it takes to generate a quote and sell a water heater replacement in a traditional face-to-face interaction for standard projects.

Do you want to know about water heater problems before your workday is over?

Or after?

Now a Water Heater Intelligent Enough to Prevent Emergencies Introducing Triton.™ With the industry’s only all-inclusive leak detection and prevention system with proprietary auto shut-off and smart monitoring technology, you can avoid the 2 a.m. emergency service call and take back control of your work schedule. Rheem® innovation helps you protect and service your clients’ business with Triton: Avoid water damage with auto shut-off

Monitor tank health with systematic checks

Replace any brand on the market with ease

Thanks to this breakthrough product, the history of commercial water heaters will now be divided into two eras: before Triton–and after. Visit

To request information, see page 47. Southern PHC | 25

Industry News Taco Offers FloPro “Soup to Nuts” Training for 2018 in the mechanical room and—of course—what actually happens when you install "what's in the box.” “The factory training sessions run two days, offering extensive hands-on experience with system wiring,” said Barba. “The two-day, Cranston, R.I., sessions also include a factory tour and a night on the town." Interested hydronic pros and students are encouraged to register at 2018 FloPro Factory Training Dates:

Taco residential training experts John Barba and Dave Holdorf are bringing back Taco’s most popular and requested course, "Residential Hydronics: Advanced Soup to Variable Speed Nuts." In this intensive, hands-on, two-day course, attendees receive a real-world look at modern residential hydronic systems, learning common sense solutions to the challenges they face every day in the field. The course bypasses theory, and the usual "what's in the box" training, to immerse installers in practical applications

April 19-20 (sold out) May 17-18 June 21-22 July 19-20 (sold out) September 20-21 October 18-19 Costs: $140 (tuition only, hotel accommodations not included) $230 (includes one night hotel stay) $310 (includes two nights of hotel accommodations) $400 (includes three nights of hotel accommodations)

Wilo USA Exhibited at AHR with Scot and Weil Family of Brands Wilo USA participated in the annual AHR Expo, January 2224, in Chicago with the Scot Pump and Weil Pump brands, all unified under the Wilo name, in the largest booth ever presented by Wilo USA. The 40-foot by 70-foot booth featured new solutions from all three brands plus the Wilo 55 Sprint Car. Wilo, Scot, and Weil kicked off the Expo with an exclusive breakfast event on the first morning of the show, offering early show access, one-on-one discussions with product experts, and a preview of the new products on display. “The idea of the breakfast event was to give our manufacturers’ reps a sneak-peak of our incredible booth before the rest of the attendees so they could tell their customers about the ‘can’t-miss’ Wilo booth and understand exactly what they could expect,” said Tim Stapula, Wilo USA’s director of marketing. “This was a breakout AHR for us exhibiting as ‘the new Wilo USA,’ and what better way to show them firsthand than in an empty exhibition hall, with no distractions.” The Wilo 55 Sprint Car and its driver, Tommy “Guns” Nichols, drew consistent attention to the booth, and a total of 2,000 new Wilo 2018 backpacks—a trade show staple— were given away in the first day and a half. It was a recordbreaking show for Wilo, with booth traffic at an all-time high and the team capturing more than 1,800 leads. 26 Southern PHC |

The Wilo USA booth at the AHR Expo featured solutions from all three brands, unified under the Wilo name.

Industry News Marsh Bellofram Announces New Flame Management Division to Serve Oil/Gas Market

The Marsh Bellofram Group of Companies announced the creation of its new BelGAS FM (Flame Management) division, further diversifying Marsh Bellofram’s existing BelGAS division, that designs and manufactures both high- and low-pressure regulator products. The new BelGAS FM division will serve the needs of the oil and gas industry with a range of flame arrestors, tank venting accessories, burners, and specialty fabrication services. “The oil and gas industry continues to be a growth market and a center of focus for product development,” said Joe J. Colletti, Jr., president and CEO. “But even more than our products, it’s our expertise in these products’ design and manufacture, our ability to take our product to market, and proper specification that is vital to protecting life and equipment. The creation of BelGAS FM makes this possible by channeling our considerable resources into a dedicated division.” The new BelGAS FM division will be headquartered in Claremore, Okla.

Fujitsu and Ventacity Offer Joint Commercial HVAC Solution for Smarter, Healthier, More Efficient Buildings

Fujitsu General America has partnered with Portland, Ore.-based Ventacity Systems to provide a more efficient heating, cooling, ventilation, and controls solution for commercial buildings. The joint solution combines Ventacity’s energy-efficient ventilation and the company’s newly introduced Ventacity HVAC2 Smarter Building Platform whole-building controls technology with Fujitsu’s full line of Airstage VRF heating and cooling systems. The two systems, working together, enhance comfort, provide better zoning, and create a healthier indoor environment. The plug-and-play integration between the Airstage system and Ventacity’s cloudenabled, heat recovery ventilator (HRV) effectively lowers the variable refrigerant flow (VRF) capacity needed in order to keep buildings at setpoint temperatures while ventilating per ASHRAE 62.1. The addition of Ventacity’s HVAC2 platform adds a cloud-based system that helps cost-effectively monitor and manage HVAC systems in a single building or across entire building portfolios, capturing vital building analytics that can optimize the system’s performance. “Our partnership with Fujitsu will take the HVAC industry into the 21st century, and, for the first time, enable HVAC contractors to apply modern cloud based technology and simple automated processes to provide commercial buildings with a healthier, more efficient, and more smartly managed environment,” said Sal D’Auria, founder and CEO, Ventacity Systems.

ASHRAE Heads to Houston for Annual Conference, June 23-27 ASHRAE is heading to one of the world’s most air-conditioned cities— Houston—for the 2018 ASHRAE Annual Conference, June 23-27. The five-day event includes eight conference tracks, one mini track, tours, social events, and a keynote message from research scientist and author, Dr. Ainissa Ramirez. Registration is now open for the conference, which takes place at the Hilton Americas-Houston Hotel and the George R. Brown Convention Center. Early bird registration ends April 30. “ASHRAE’s Annual Conference

provides a forum for a meaningful exchange of knowledge and ideas among thousands of industry professionals seeking new sustainable technology solutions for the built environment,” says 2017-18 ASHRAE President Bjarne W. Olesen, Ph.D. “This conference is an example of how ASHRAE is at the forefront of innovation in an everevolving industry.” This year’s Technical Program features several new tracks, including one on Residential – Modern Building in Hot and Humid Climates, a pertinent topic in the building industry recently with

the movement toward net zero housing and indoor air quality. The Technical Program will also address one of the most dynamic areas in HVAC&R through the track HVAC&R Control Freaks. Topics range from design innovations spreading through the industry to the latest in building integration and observation, as well as troubleshooting the most common issues occurring in building management systems. Learn more and register for the 2018 ASHRAE Annual Conference at www. Southern PHC | 27

Bill Holder

Senior Distribution Manager – West, LG Air Conditioning Technologies Favorite quote: “Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success.” — Henry Ford Childhood aspiration: Become a pilot Alma mater: BA and MA, Political Science, California State University–Fullerton; MBA, Isenberg School of Management, University of Massachusetts–Amherst Family life and hobbies: Two sons, Brody and Beau; wife, Susan. Hobbies—stock trading and traveling Last book read: Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink.

When did you get into the industry, and how has it changed since that time? I entered the HVAC industry through a contractor in 1999. Since joining HVAC, the most notable change I have seen is that the industry, over the years, is becoming more innovative and advanced. Websites have replaced Yellow Page directories, smart phone apps have replaced/supplemented wall stats, and split inverter product is now being adopted as a whole home alternative to traditional unitary on/off systems. What do you consider to be your company’s best asset? The LG team. Our company is comprised of some of the most dynamic and hardworking individuals in the business. They are passionate about our innovations and driven by revolutionizing the industry. When these talented people are combined with high-quality and innovative LG solutions, such as the U.S.’s first 5-ton single-phase Multi V™ S Heat Recovery unit, they pivot and create markets where none existed, enabling LG to lead the industry. It is such a pleasure to work with such a dedicated team. How would you describe your business philosophy? Blocking and tackling; people much smarter than me invented this business and I attempt to keep it very simple by knowing that at the end of every day LG’s success is reliant on the strength of the relationships we forge. Strong connections with our rep and distribution channel partners, contractors, and end-users help us create a tight-knit community that effectively serves the marketplace. 28 Southern PHC |

Where do you see the industry in the next 5-10 years? I think the next few years will see a normalization of multi-split systems into the American home. With advantages in efficiency, zoning, and design flexibility, multi-split systems will gain larger and larger market share over conventional, unitary systems. In the meantime those who still want to capitalize on the benefits of inverter technology but want the traditional look of a traditional system are able to do so with products like LG’s four-way Vertical Air Handlers (VAHUs) and High and Low static ducted products. This gives contractors the flexibility to provide a better solution over the traditional, unitary systems and when paired with local and regional rebates and energy savings, our systems are even more cost-effective. This makes the LG story a powerful one when properly communicated to the homeowner. What are your biggest challenges on a day-to-day basis? Getting the contractor to understand our technology and how much it is being adopted in the market. The consumer is looking to our inverter-based products for multiple reasons—better comfort, energy savings, space constraints, and noise levels, just to name a few. The contracting community, in some cases, is having a harder time adopting our technology because it is different than what they have done in the past and change is hard. LG offers many opportunities for training so contractors that are interested in learning this technology can get the skills they need to be successful and gain an edge over their competition.

Romeo Sy

Senior Distribution Manager – East, LG Air Conditioning Technologies Favorite quote: “The answer you did not want to hear is where the opportunity lies.” — Me Childhood aspiration: I have always been fascinated with helping people. Back then it was in physical therapy, and now it is with comfort cooling. Both are equally vital and important. Alma mater: NJCU (New Jersey City University) Family life and hobbies: I am blessed to have a loving wife and two boys, 5 and 11 years of age. We love going on family trips and have an unconditional love for motorcycles. Last book read: Crushing it! by Gary Vaynerchuk. When did you get into the industry, and how has it changed since that time? I got into this industry in 2006 with a background in medical sales. I was fortunate to learn along the way while being fluid to change. With the rise of the internet and technology, it catapulted us into an arena where LG was already a leader. Everything you see now is “smart” or can be controlled through your personal device. No one has a more integrated offering than LG. It is truly amazing. What do you consider to be your company’s best asset? LG’s best asset is its people. As a giant company, the culture is surprisingly personable and gives you a sense of belonging. Everyone that I have dealt with has been welcoming and supportive. How would you describe your business philosophy? I have learned to pursue restraint in making decisions by diving a little deeper into problems or opportunities. We can get lost even in the details, but somewhere there, the answer lies. How does it differentiate your company from others? LG has and keeps reminding us that our customers are first. It bears on the shoulders of each employee to maximize our customer’s satisfaction by responding to their requests with speed and accuracy. Not only do you get quality products, but the best customer experience with LG. Where do you see the industry in the next 5-10 years? I imagine that heat pump inverter split systems will be the new

norm in both replacement and RNC markets. The inverter split market will continue to grow as technology and efficiency standards keep pushing it to new levels. What has happened in the industry that has most surprised you? It amazes me how inverter split technology has been in use all around in the world. We are at that point where we can offer our own customers a multitude of highly efficient, smart, and flexible solutions to many homes and buildings. We haven’t even scratched the surface yet. What are your biggest challenges on a day-to-day basis? The biggest challenge is selecting which opportunities to tackle. Some choices will yield high results, and some will take a little longer to get through. If you prioritize and get the right people to help, it makes every day a lot easier. In your opinion, what are some ways to get younger people interested in careers in plumbing and HVAC? I believe that young ambassadors already in the profession should speak out more about the opportunities that lie in the trade. These are the folks that use social media and other avenues to talk their language. There are countless young people that are smart and even have degrees that are looking for a lucrative career but are overlooked because they lack the specific knowledge about plumbing and HVAC. I think there are opportunities to coach and invest in these individuals so they may excel in the industry.

Southern PHC | 29


things you should know about

Heat Pump Water Heaters

Heat pump water heaters have been around for a while, but improvements in technology and components have increased their efficiency and reliability, making them a viable alternative to electric resistance water heaters. 1. There have been advances in heat pump water heater technology. “Today’s technology mirrors that of a refrigerator, using most of the same components,” says Gregg Holladay, business development manager, Specialty Markets, Bradford White. “This has led to a very reliable product with up to 10-year warranties to back up that confidence. Efficiencies began at 200 percent and have climbed well above 300 percent today, creating mass market appeal.” And the improved energy efficiency creates greater potential savings for customers who upgrade to a heat pump water heater, says Arthur Smith, residential product manager for A. O. Smith. “Another notable advancement in heat pump water heater technology in re-

30 Southern PHC |

cent years is that the amount of space needed to operate has been significantly reduced,” he adds. “For example, when heat pump water heaters were first introduced to the market, they generally required 1,000 cubic feet to operate. Today, a heat pump water heater needs only about 700 cubic feet.” With accessory duct kits, heat pump water heaters can be installed in even smaller spaces by pulling in air from adjacent rooms, Smith notes. 2. Heat pump water heaters are easy to install. “As a direct replacement for standard electric water heaters, they do not require plumbers to change the refrigerant, pump components, or anything else in

the sealed system,” says Smith. “These units will produce condensate by pulling moisture out of the air, however, which means that a plumber will need a few extra minutes to run an extra pipe down to a floor drain.” Heat pump water heaters can be used in the same application as the standard electric 50- or 80-gallon water heaters they replace, Holladay says. “The only difference is they need air, which equates to a space of 700-1,000 cubic feet (not square feet), a 10’ x 10’ x 7’ or 10’ x 10’ x 10’ room (depending on manufacturer),” he says. “They will also fit in a smaller room, if a louvered door is used to gain access to a larger air space. Closets as small as 36 inches with a louvered door can also be used.”

A.O. Smith heat pump water heaters being assembled.

Since heat pump water heaters move heat from the air to the tank while removing up to two quarts of moisture, condensate must be managed in accordance with local codes, he adds. 3. Heat pump water heaters are more energy efficient than electric resistance water heaters. “Heat pump water heaters can pay for themselves through energy savings, provide the same volume of water as the standard electric water heater they replace, and they fit in the same space or application,” says Holladay. “Today, water heaters are primarily sold for two reasons: failure and new construction. Heat pump water heaters really open the door to proactive replacement for energy savings and payback.” The Department of Energy’s website offers a succinct explanation of a heat pump water heater’s efficiency, says Holladay: “Heat pump water heaters use electricity to move heat from one place to another instead of generating heat directly. Therefore, they can be two to three times more energy efficient than conventional electric resistance water heaters. To move the heat, heat pumps work like a refrigerator in reverse.” “Customers who replace an electric resistance water heater with a heat pump water heater save approximately $400 annually in energy costs, with a payback of around two years,” says Ankur Maheshwari, senior product manager, heat pump water heaters, Rheem. “As the second largest energy-consuming appliance in most households,

many utility companies are offering big incentives for homeowners to upgrade to a more efficient water heater,” says Smith. “In many cases, the higher upfront costs of a heat pump water heater are offset in a matter of years by rebates and energy savings.” 4. Heat pump water heaters are great replacements for electric resistance water heaters. “A heat pump water heater is a great replacement for an electric resistance water heater in most applications,” says Maheshwari. “Garages, basements, and attics are the most common installation sites for heat pump water heaters.” “Applications where the water heater is in the actual living space (upstairs), should take into account that heat pump water heaters will have a 3-5 degree cooling effect when they run,” says Holladay. “If the water heater is located in a laundry room that is generally warm, this does not present a problem.” While some contractors may think that heat pump water heaters are only viable in warmer climates, says Smith, the reality is they can be installed anywhere. “Often, homeowners in colder climates may see more savings from heat pump water heaters because their higher electric rates can be reduced by 66 percent or more,” he says. “When installed indoors, these water heaters will operate efficiently down to 45 degrees Fahrenheit, making them practical for a garage or basement installation. “In the Southern United States, natural factors such as warm, humid climates,

spacious garages, and the fact that it’s a big electric market are all factors that work in favor of a heat pump water heater.” 5. Maintenance of heat pump water heaters is similar to that of conventional water heaters. “Heat pump water heater maintenance is similar to maintenance for an electric resistance water heater, with the addition of periodically cleaning the filter,” says Maheshwari. “Heat pump water heaters require a condensate drain. The condensate produced is not acidic and hence does not need to be neutralized.” “Most manufacturers only require the cleaning of the air filter that protects the evaporator,” says Holladay. “Since the condenser line is wrapped around the outside of the tank, descaling is not needed. As with all tank products, occasional draining of a few gallons of water to remove sediment from the tank is recommended.” “The lifespan of any water heater is largely a by-product of its installation, maintenance, and operating conditions,” says Smith. He offers a few steps to improve the lifespan of a water heater: • A water pressure reduction valve to maintain water pressure between 50 and 60 psi. • A thermal expansion tank to reduce the pressure on the hot water tank. • Annual check of the anode rod. • Correct water imbalances: Hard water can create scale or sediment buildup, and soft water is more corrosive and can deplete anode rods. Southern PHC | 31

Products Milwaukee Introduces Compact Site Light with 2-in-1 Lighting Features Milwaukee Tool’s M18 RADIUS Compact Site Light with Flood Mode provides a compact solution for users who require the versatility of two lights in one. With 2,200 lumens of light output in area mode and 1,000 lumens of flood lighting, the light can illuminate large and smaller task workspaces for up to 24 hours on a single charge.

DeWalt Introduces New 20V MAX Compact 3.0Ah Battery DeWalt has introduced the new 20V MAX Compact 3.0Ah Battery (DCB230). Compared to the existing DCB200, the DCB230 offers the same capacity and is 20 percent lighter.

Friedrich Ductless Models Offer All-Season Efficiency Friedrich Air Conditioning Co. has launched its new ENERGY STAR® 9,000 and 12,000 Btu models, capable of delivering 28.0 SEER/12.5 HSPF, with low ambient heat pump operation down to -13 degrees F, as part of the company’s J-Series ductless product line. The Precision Inverter System makes changes in 1Hz increments, allowing the unit to run at variable speeds while delivering precise heating-cooling capabilities to maintain constant temperatures. 32 Southern PHC |

HVAC | Products Fresh-Aire UV Introduces IAQConnect On-Demand IAQ System Fresh-Aire UV has introduced IAQConnect, an ondemand IAQ system for controlling and monitoring airborne particulates, volatile organic compounds (VOC), temperature, humidity, and CO2 in both commercial and residential applications. The IAQSense monitors indoor gaseous airborne contaminants, particulates, humidity, and temperature, and wirelessly signals the IAQHub to activate the HVAC system when predetermined levels surpass set points.

Marketair Introduces SuperSleeve Wall Sleeve for Time-Saving Mini-Split Evaporator Retrofits Marketair, has introduced the SuperSleeve, a PVC wall sleeve for insulated linesets, electrical/communications cabling, and condensate drain hose that eliminates the need for a second jobsite technician or a temporary support bracket to hold the evaporator in place during a retrofit installation. The 3-inch-diameter (I.D.) (7.5 cm) SuperSleeve is flanged on both ends for a tight, secure fit and telescopes from 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 cm) to accommodate most wall thicknesses.

EvenAir Whole House Comfort Control System from Field Controls Modulates Air Delivery to Balance Temperatures Field Controls’ EvenAir Whole House Comfort Control System monitors sleeping and living area temperatures and automatically adjusts system airflow to deliver balanced temperatures for a comfortable home. Installation is simple, with the EvenAir system thermostat where the existing thermostat located in the living area, a temperature sensor in the sleeping area, and Area Comfort Dampers that control the airflow to the sleeping area and living area in the existing ductwork. Southern PHC | 33

Products | HVAC Bacharach’s MVR-300 Leak Detector Enhances Occupant Safety for VRF/VRV HVAC Systems Bacharach, Inc. offers the MVR-300 to provide continuous refrigerant detection within occupied spaces. Ideal for integration with VRF/ VRV (Variable Refrigerant Flow/Variable Refrigerant Volume) systems, the MVR-300 identities affected rooms and enables the HVAC system to isolate the leak, so that other rooms remain unaffected while the risks of a refrigerant leak are mitigated.

Berner Introduces RevolvAir Air Curtain System for Revolving Doors The RevolvAir Air Curtain System for Revolving Doors by Berner International is specifically-sized to fit each revolving door’s diameter, configuration and brand. It creates a separating air barrier at the building’s conditioned interior by blocking unwanted exterior air trapped within the moving door sections.

Greenheck Premium Bathroom Exhaust Fans Deliver Low Sound Ratings

Nortek Global HVAC Introduces the Reznor High Efficiency DOAS Line Nortek Global HVAC, LLC has introduced the Reznor ZQYRA Series, a low-cost, high-efficiency dedicated Greenheck’s newly designed Premium Model SP

outdoor air system (DOAS) for adding outdoor air re-

bathroom exhaust fans now offer low sound ratings as

quirements in educational, healthcare, office, retail, and

low as less than 0.3 sones. Available in six sizes, SP-A50

other light commercial spaces. Reznor’s newly-devel-

through SP-A190, the fan features insulated housings

oped Z-Series Selection software expedites specifica-

and vibration isolators between the motor and housing

tion as simply as selecting an off-the-shelf system, be-

to contribute to quiet, efficient operation.

cause inputs require only basic project parameter data.

34 Southern PHC |

Marketing & Technology Matt Michel is the CEO of the Service Roundtable (, the largest business alliance in the plumbing, heating, and cooling industry. You can reach Matt by email at, toll-free at 877-262-3341,or follow him on Twitter as ComancheMktg.

Grow or Die By Matt Michel

Based on an informal poll of contractors attending a number of trade shows, roughly four out of 10 do not want to grow. Curious. If you are not growing, you are either stagnating or dying. Here are nine reasons you should grow your business. 1. Grow to reduce personal risk. Can your company survive if something happens to you? Even if you think you will lead a charmed, accident-free life, scale still offers a form of insurance. If you get dinged in a lawsuit, fined by the government, or victimized by theft, attaining a certain size will give you the ability to withstand the hit. Grow … or risk everything. 2. Grow to do what you want. When you wear all of the hats, you do all of the tasks. This includes the tasks you hate. It includes the task you do poorly. When your company grows you can hire someone to do (most of) the distasteful tasks while you concentrate on the things you like, where you excel. Grow … and focus on what you want. 3. Grow for better pay. If you want to make more money, grow a bigger business. Many single truck operators claim they make more money without a payroll than with one, but that’s because they carry little overhead as a sole proprietor and fail to raise prices to cover the added overhead of a growing business. Since overhead tends to grow in a stepwise—not linear—fashion, overhead as a percent of sales tends to fall with growth, while profitability rises. Grow … and make more money.

4. Grow to create an exit strategy. Size gives you exit options. For a small contractor, the only exit is usually insolvency. Close it up and walk away. At best, you can pray someone will buy your customer list. Larger companies, on the other hand, are attractive to employees who may want to buy you out and to third parties who will pay multiples based on profitability. Grow … and profit from a lifetime spent building a business. 5. Grow to weather employment losses. When a tech quits a three-truck company in the middle of the busy season, it’s a catastrophe. When a tech leaves a 20-truck business, there’s usually one or more apprentices waiting for just such an opportunity. Grow … and stop being hostage to your labor force. 6. Grow to survive a hostile regulatory environment. For the first time in decades, federal regulations are being curtailed. State and local regulations, however, are not. Each new regulatory burden placed on a business sucks profit from the company. The smallest contractors ignore the regulations and try to skate under the law. The largest absorb the cost of compliance with existing staff and spread additional costs over greater sales. The rest get squeezed. Grow … and survive. 7. Grow to have more fun. Running a larger company is more fun. Sure, the responsibilities are greater, but so are the opportunities. The manager of a larger company has more options, including the option to work on charities, take long vacations,

and so on. Grow … and have more fun. 8. Grow to maintain a positive personal outlook. People running businesses that are growing live lives of abundance. Those trying to save their way to prosperity exist in a world of scarcity. Positive, optimistic, can-do people abound in the world of abundance where the future is bright. Grow … and live in a world of abundance. 9. Grow because it is natural. Every living thing on this planet grows. Growth is what people are supposed to do. Growth is what businesses are supposed to do. It is in our nature. It is not in our nature to stagnate. Grow … or die. Get Help There has never been a better time to grow your HVAC business than now. The economy is strong. Economy growth is projected to be the highest in more than a decade. Accordingly, consumer optimism is strong. People are buying houses and investing in them. There has also never been the wide array of support for contractors. Manufacturer programs have improved. Local trade associations are on the move. National contractor alliances offer more support options than ever before. Any contractor who wants help, advice, and guidance can get it. Grow … or die. For more information on the PHC industry’s most affordable business support organization, check out or call 877-262-3341 and ask for a tour behind the firewall so you can see what your competitors are enjoying. Southern PHC | 35

Products | HVAC Lynxspring Announces New 7” HD Touchscreen Display for Building Automation and IoT Environments Lynxspring’s new Lynxspring TSD 7 is a high-definition, 7” touchscreen display for use in a wide range of HVAC, lighting, energy, commissioning, troubleshooting, servicing, and IoT user experiences. With a 1.2 GHz quad-core processor integrated with a powerful graphical engine to display any webpage, including HTML5 for advanced data visualizations, it’s ideal for managing operating parameters of systems including setting values, monitoring equipment and system status, viewing alarms, and taking needed action.

Mitsubishi Electric Horizontal Ducted Indoor Units Available in Two Smaller Capacity Sizes

Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc.’s Cooling & Heating Division has extend-

RectorSeal’s Acid-Away Now in a Time-Saving Injector

ed its M-Series line to include two new capacity sizes of the PEAD Horizontal Ducted Indoor Unit. PEAD-A09AA7 and PEAD-A15AA7 are compatible with SUZ and MXZ-series outdoor units and are small enough to be concealed within an attic or closet space. These units target Passive House and net zero energy applications.

RectorSeal’s Acid-Away PRO, reformulated for all refrigeration oils, features an all-in-one injector for eliminating acid in residential and commercial refrigeration and air-conditioning sys-

Comfortmaker Two-Stage Models Provide Comfort Control at an Affordable Price

tems. The six-inch-long (152-mm) in-

The Comfortmaker N4H6

jector consists of a 1.5-ounce (44-ml)

Performance 16 heat pump

copper reservoir, a high side 1/4-inch

and N4A7 Performance 17 air

(6-mm) standard brass connection fit-

conditioner are energy-effi-

ting, and a low side 1/4-inch low-loss

cient and provide quiet op-

Schrader valve brass connection fitting

eration at an affordable price.

designed to protect hands from frost-

Both are ENERGY STAR quali-

bite and the environment from escaped

fied and have 10-year parts


limited warranties.

36 Southern PHC |

Plumbing | Products Taco’s New Combination Boiler Feed and Backflow Preventer Valve

Webstone Offers Vertical Mount Air Separator with Isolation Accessories

Taco Comfort Solutions’ new



brass boiler feed and dual check

announced a new

backflow preventer with atmo-

New ProLock Stackable Tees from John Guest


spheric vent is available as a com-

air separator and

bination unit, or the boiler feed


valve and backflow preventer can


Designed for use in the plumbing

each be purchased separately. This


market, the new ProLock Stackable

unit provides installers with a con-


Tees from John Guest are available

venient, complete solution for new

MIP, FIP, sweat,

in sizes from 1/2” x 1/2” x 1/2” CTS

systems or as a seamless replace-

or press connec-

up to 1” x 1” x 3/4” CTS. With a body

ment for units in the field.


mount isola-

accessories, in




manufactured from high-quality



engineered plastic, the tees are UV

clude full port ball

resistant for outdoor use and suit-

valves and Isolator

able for use with copper, PEX, or


CPVC pipe.



ADEY Improves Magnetic Dirt Filter for Light Commercial to Heavy Industrial Applications ADEY Professional Heating Solutions has unveiled improvements to its MagnaClean Commercial Magnetic Dirt Filter range. The magnet array has been redesigned to allow the rods to be lifted individually; this sequence allows the magnetite from each rod to fall into the base of the filter body so it can be flushed out via the 1¼” NPT drain at the base of the filter, making servicing safer and simpler.

Eemax Launches AccuMix II Tankless Water Heater Line An update to Eemax’s point-of-use AccuMix heaters, the AccuMix II product line yields savings on energy and water with a low flow activation of 0.3 gallons per minute. Available in sizes ranging from 3.5 kW to 11.5 kW, all AccuMix II models feature 3/8” plumbing connections to accommodate the replacement of competitive products in the field without additional plumbing changes.

Southern PHC | 37

Products | Plumbing Armstrong Announces Performance Management Capabilities to 1250 HP Armstrong Fluid Technology has announced the availability of its next-level of innovation in Design Envelope pumping solutions across the entire pump range. Design Envelope technology provides extended intelligence, wireless connectivity, patented Parallel Sensorless Pump Control, and on-board web services, now available across the entire range from 1 to 1250 hp.

Liberty Pumps Introduces New Line of Battery Backup Pumps Systems Liberty Pumps has introduced StormCell, a new line of battery backup pump systems. The 12-volt backup sump pumps feature professional-grade chargers, an energy-efficient DC pump for longer run times, and optional NightEye wireless technology for remote monitoring through a tablet or smart phone.

Enhanced Franklin Electric FPS PowerSewer System Provides Added Flexibility The FPS PowerSewer System from Franklin Electric is a flexible, service friendly system for residential and commercial applications. This low-pressure sewer system is available in 60-, 72-, 84-, and 96-inch basin sizes and pumps wastewater to a collection or treatment area, and is shipped complete from the factory to simplify installation.

Lochinvar Expands Commercial Condensing Water Heater Line Lochinvar has expanded its commercial condensing water heater family with five new, more powerful ARMOR models. Available for indoor or outdoor construction and ranging from 1.25 to 4 million Btu/hr, they offer 98 percent thermal efficiency and feature an enhanced low-profile, horizontal stainless steel heat exchanger. 38 Southern PHC |

“Technology is forever changing! We don’t have a choice but to learn from these trends in order to be successful “in Technology is forever changing! We don’t a choice the marketplace. PHCC is committed to have equipping but to learn from these trends in order to be successful contractors with the resources necessary to stay in the marketplace. PHCClike is committed to equipping ahead of the curve. Tools the Technology contractors with the resources necessary Business Interest Group provide access toto stay ahead of theresources curve. Tools the Technology information, andlike discussion boards that Business Interest Group provide access can expand both our knowledge and ourtocontact information, resources and discussion boards base. This allows us to focus on providing top-that can expand both and our quality service to our our knowledge clients knowing thatcontact PHCC is base. This allows us to focus on providing as committed to our success as we are.” topquality service to our clients knowing that PHCC is as committed to our successGILBERT as we are.” RODRIGUEZ PURE-LINE PLUMBING • DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA



You Have a Choice. Choose to be the Best. As a member of PHCC, you have access to all of the tools you need to thrive in You Have Choice. bebusiness, the Best. the changing p-h-caindustry. Choose Choose to be the best to for your for your customers andoffor your you future. As a member PHCC, have access to all of the tools you need to thrive in the changing p-h-c industry. Choose to be the best for your business, for your Unlock learn customers andto for your more: future. JOIN PHCC TODAY! 1-800-533-7694 | Unlock to learn more:

1-800-533-7694 | 1-800-533-7694 | Unlock toTODAY! learnsee more: To request information, page 47. JOIN PHCC 1-800-533-7694 | Unlock to learn 1-800-533-7694 more: | 1-800-533-7694 |

Southern PHC | 39


Collaboration Requires Association By Jim Pendergrass Executive Director, PHCC of North Carolina

Recently I wrote an article entitled “We’re So Much Stronger When We Collaborate!”, highlighting our belief that “Collaboration among similar stakeholders … can multiply our effectiveness, help coalesce new ideas into actions, and hopefully move us all forward toward positive resolutions and directions for our trades and its professionals.” Since that was published, I’ve realized that there was a missing aspect in what I presented … the aspect of association. In today’s society of individualism, self-focus, and virtual isolation, I believe we are at risk of losing this defining aspect of who we are, and a subsequent loss of the strength and potential of collaborating for our mutual success. In 1835, a gentleman by the name of Alexis de Tocqueville wrote a treatise entitled Democracy in America in which he stated, “Wherever at the head of some new undertaking you see the government of France, or a man of rank in England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association.” (Emphases mine.) If we can agree that new undertakings are usually a good thing, and that they also usually imply a collaboration of interested parties on some level, then it would follow that we

need to be reminded of and reconsider the aspect of association that de Tocqueville saw as a positive strength in our American society. The comparisons de Tocqueville used in assigning association as a United States attribute point to governing bodies or overlords. We as Americans have differed through time from these two by virtue of our voluntary gathering together, or associating, in order to pursue a mutually beneficial and agreed upon end goal. No one requires or directs we do so, we just do. The American spirit that led the forefathers of our nation to join forces in order to create the good ol’ USA was founded on voluntary association with each other. Did they always agree on every point? Of course not … but they collaborated for their—i.e. their families, neighbors, friends, co-laborers— mutual benefit. So what does this have to do with groups such as ours, the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors of North Carolina, or PHCC of NC, for ease of use? It has everything to do with us. Our Association, capital “A”, is intentionally at work for the association, small “a”, of our members. We believe that by providing a place, and a dialogue, and resources

to encourage the purposeful association of members of the Association, we all mutually benefit. Our collaboration through association leads to more professional, ethical, caring service to our friends and neighbors. It leads to protection of the integrity of our trade’s establishment of licensure to show proof of knowledge, ability, and responsibility toward ensuring the health and safety of our fellow citizens. It leads to groundbreaking new technologies and best practices that safeguard our environment for future generations. All because of voluntary association for the greater good. Because of considering “What’s In It For Us”, instead of WIIFM! By viewing our “competitors” as colleagues. And by ignoring the separations of race, gender, wealth, status, or even political leanings that society wants to force us to live by. Our United States as a nation and we in our individual lives move forward positively as our variety of passion- and interest-focused Association members collaborate in association. Are you in association with other PH-C professionals, collaborating for our mutual success? If not, why not?

PHCC of Texas Plans Annual Conference May 3-5, 2018 PHCC of Texas will hold their Annual Conference on Thursday, May 3, through Saturday, May 5, at the Hilton Dallas/Rockwall Lakefront, 2055 Summer Lee Dr., Rockwall, Texas. It will feature three days of businessenhancing workshops, speakers, industry knowledge, and networking 40 Southern PHC |

opportunities. Topics at the TED-style conference will include Running a Business Without Debt, Recruiting for the Trades, Employee Retention, Hiring Veterans, and Maximizing Social Media. The keynote speaker will be Susan Frew, who uses her business coach-

ing experience in the family plumbing business. She and her husband grew Sunshine Plumbing Heating Air from $177,000 in 2012 to a projected $3 million in 2017. For more information, contact Amy Noska at or 512-523-9094.


Hill Mechanical in Nyeri County, Kenya Left: Meeting with the governor of Nyeri, Mutahi Kahiga (at the head of the table). Below: Dinner with the ministers of Nyeri: Dr. Daniel Swai Wanjaria, CEC Lands; Diana Kendi Tirichia, CEC Trade and Investment; Frederick Kinyua, CEC Water; and Henry Kinyua, CEC Agriculture and Fisheries. Bottom: Daniel Hill on the hike to the aquifer.

Daniel Hill, president and owner of Hill Mechanical of Georgia, along with his wife, Karen, recently visited the area of Nyeri County, just northeast of Nairobi in Kenya, Africa. Sponsored by Sunbelt Marketing, Daniel’s initial purpose was to teach basic plumbing to a few gentlemen with limited knowledge of plumbing, under the guidance of Teleios Ministry. The intricacies of plumbing in Nyeri County mimic those of the Roman Empire. The simple basics of bringing water into the building is on par with the Western world; it is the exit of the wastewater that remains archaic. With whiteboard and marker in hand, Daniel held his first Plumbing101 class to teach the purpose of venting, and proper water pipe and waste pipe installation. Hands-on training was limited to the pull and reset of a rear flush water closet. A continual water source is the Achilles heel of the area of Nyeri County. The prominent water source for this area is derived from the Aberdare Mountain range. The river water from the mountains is captured in a manmade reservoir, where several miles of staged plastic pipe (from 10” to building feed lines) captures this precious commodity to flow to the community of Nyeri County. During Daniel’s visit, the water source

was found to not be producing as it should, limiting water availability to the community to only one day per week. Along with the district water management team of the area, Daniel and Floyd Parker, of Teleios Ministry, hiked the treacherous jungle terrain of the mountain range to inspect the main water supply line. In eight separate areas, the water main was found to have been damaged, thereby causing lack of water supply to the villages below. As of this writing, the water management team (10 men) physically carried the repair materials up the steep climb of the mountain range to make the repairs to restore the water flow. The improved water flow now allows the community a water source for two days per week. During Daniel’s visit, he was introduced to Mutahi Kahiga, the governor of Nyeri, as well as the ministers of Water, Trade, Agriculture, and Land. Gov. Kahiga and his ministers delighted in the purposes of Teleios Ministry and were

thrilled to learn of a Western plumber volunteering his time to teach a trade to the citizens of Nyeri County. Daniel Hill, a Master Licensed Plumber in Georgia with over 28 years’ experience in the plumbing industry, as well as a MK (missionary kid) whose parents served with the International Mission Board (IMB) in Bangladesh, India (1974-1978) and in Bangkok, Thailand (1979-1986) is no stranger to life in an international culture. Though this may be Daniel’s first visit to Africa to begin the basic training of plumbing, it will definitely not be his last.

PHCC of Georgia’s 5th Annual Plumbing Heating Cooling Expo is April 19 PHCC of Georgia will hold its 5th Annual Plumbing Heating Cooling Expo on Thursday, April 19, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Cobb County Civic Center, 548 South Marietta Parkway SE, Marietta, Ga.

Admission is free. There will be free food and beverages, free CE credits, door prizes, giveaways, and raffles. For more information, visit or call 678-9473473. Southern PHC | 41

Hans Kuster President/Owner, AquaMotion Inc.

Favorite quote: Don't do tomorrow what you can do today. Childhood aspiration: See the world, all of it. Alma mater: Handelschule KV, St. Gallen, Switzerland Family life and hobbies: Married, one daughter, five grandchildren; skier, swimmer, private pilot, fine art painter; World Affairs Council board member/former president Last book read: Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. When did you get into the industry, and how has it changed since that time? I started in the hydronic industry in 1962. It was not a dynamic industry. Innovation was slow and products stayed the same for decades. I had the advantage of comparing European and American manufacturing of hydronic heating equipment and overserved the quicker pace of Europeanmade products. What do you consider to be your company’s best asset? Innovation, innovation. I set out to make the most energy efficient circulators with more features and benefits to save the user on utility cost for decades. We accomplished this with a new water lubricated pump design that is recyclable and has more features. It is protected by three U.S. patents. How would you describe your business philosophy? Make a better product than the competition. Continually look for better ways to improve on the state-of-the-art in pump and valve design. Make products that are easy to use and service and last longer. I spent many years on the design of the product line and completed life actual testing before starting sales. Listen to 42 Southern PHC |

your customers and make products with features that are useful and make an impact. How does it differentiate your company from others? We are more customer-oriented that our competitors. We listen and create what the customers and OEMs need to be market leaders. We are very flexible and always look at new opportunities and come up with new ideas and use our deep engineering knowledge to create unique products that have great market potential. Where do you see your company in five years? Ten years? Being a major pump and recirculation systems manufacturer with a substantial market share. Where do you see the industry in the next 5-10 years? More electronics and gadgets, some of which are not necessary; more energy conservation, more ECM pumps, more attractive looking products, shift from hot water tanks to tankless systems. What has happened in the industry that has most surprised you? Rebate programs by utility companies that distort the natural market.

What are your biggest challenges on a day-to-day basis? Reaching all the potential customers that can profit from our top-notch products. What advice would you offer someone just starting in the workforce? Be eager to learn and acquire product knowledge, company culture, never be late, improve your skills continually and you will succeed. In your opinion, what are some ways to get younger people interested in careers in plumbing and HVAC? I think the old-fashioned apprentice training program is excellent for our industry for study, and work to achieve competence in many fields of the industry. Did you have any mentors when you first started in the industry? Who were they and how did they help? I have been fortunate to have been given so many opportunities to grow with the company I started with. John Hazen White, Sr. appreciated what I could do and I was able to acquire broad industry knowledge in marketing, manufacturing, and finance to start my own business, Sparco Inc., and then AquaMotion Inc.

Workforce Training Dean Petersen is a Wisconsin state-licensed Master Plumber and lead apprenticeship instructor at Madison Area Technical College in Madison, Wis.

Do You Have Soft Skills? Take Inventory. By Dean Petersen In a previous contribution to Southern PHC, I emphasized the importance of remaining teachable throughout our careers to maximum our effectiveness. The suggestion was also to make it a deliberate act: to voluntarily allow others to educate us. Remaining teachable may be crucial to lifelong learning and success; I would interject that we also need to take an inventory of our soft skills. What exactly are soft skills? I asked myself the same question. So I did what most people do: I Googled it. I found words like teamwork, leadership, flexibility, responsible, good communication, self-motivated, conflict resolution, problem solving, time management, and decisiveness. In a nutshell, soft skills are the personality traits of highly effective people, especially in the workplace. In the educational world and throughout the different professional realms, soft skills are mentioned quite a bit these days, even to the extent that it is suggested to emphasize soft skills on one's resume. Some suggest that soft skills are more important to employers than the “hard” skills: specific training or knowledge. This would imply that these soft skills are what employers are really looking for. I suspect that if you ask any employer, they may admit that these characteristics separate their good employees from the great ones. So if soft skills are so desirable and they are the difference between being an adequate employee and being an excellent one, how do we get these soft skills? I have heard some claim these skills are in short supply today: “I can’t find any help” or “I can’t find good

help”. I won’t enter into that unwinnable debate. I will confess that not all of our students who enter our program come in with oodles of soft skills and the students that come in with these soft skills already do fare much better during their training than the ones who do not. But that does not mean that students who do not have these skills can’t acquire them. Quite the opposite.

What exactly are soft skills? In a nutshell, soft skills are the personality traits of highly effective people, especially in the workplace. On a positive note, we at Madison Area Technical College (MATC) currently have over 200 plumbing apprentices in our program and most of them are excellent apprentices. They work hard, are responsible, smart, and are great to work with. I can say with confidence that the future of our workforce is bright. So if soft skills are this important, they should be part of the training of our apprentices, right? But how? In the classroom, we have the ability to assess the student’s hard skills, such as are they able to accurately design a drain and vent system or determine if they understand the related plumbing code. We can measure if they are proficient in math. These are easy to do, but grading a student’s soft skills is not as easy a task as one might think.

How does one grade someone else’s attitude, flexibility, or teamwork? We at MATC believe the classroom is a microcosm of the jobsite. These soft skills look the same. Can you show up? Can you show up on time? Can you show up with your tools/class materials? Can you show up with a good attitude? These are all different expectations. The question is, how do we assess them? At MATC, we give the students the responsibility of grading themselves in regard to their soft skills.The students take their own inventory. The students perform a self-evaluation at the end of the semester. They essentially grade themselves and the self-evaluation is 20 percent of their semester grade. This may sound ridiculous, but it is our opinion that taking personal inventory has value; we are asking the student to honestly reflect on their performance. Have they met our classroom expectations? Have they shown up for class on time? Have they displayed a good attitude? Have they done their work on time, met their deadlines? Have they worked well with their peer and instructors? These are the very qualities we expect from them on the jobsite. So if soft skills are the valued characteristics that employers are looking for in their employees, and the employees who have them are more successful, then soft skills should be an emphasis in their training, along with the technical skills. By asking the students to take their own inventory to determine if they have these soft skills, they become part of the grading process. The students determine for themselves if they are on track to become successful, which is really what a grade is. Southern PHC | 43

continued from page 13

The Sky's the Limit Plumbing Company,” he says. “I have seen huge advances in materials, tools, and technology. I have seen the invention of business tools that help us to run our businesses better and easier.” What he hasn’t seen, Friedman adds, are productive efforts to attract people into the industry. “This is the biggest problem that I see in our industry at this time,” he says. “We have too few trade schools today. Shop classes are not being given in standard high schools. “For the young man or woman desiring a career in the plumbing industry: There are few fields in which there has always been, and always will be, a high demand for people,” he adds. “Our nation, and the entire world, is dependent on clean water and on sanitation. The plumbing profession offers job security. You will always be needed.” Good advice Friedman says the best advice he’s ever been given is to join the PHCC. “I was told to get involved ‘up to your neck’ with this group, and I did,” he says. “This was not a group of my competitors as I originally envisioned, but a group of my peers, people who have been my mentors and my friends; people who have shared their knowledge, their experience, and, when asked for, their advice. I truly believe that I owe my success in business to these fine people, and to the PHCC organization, which facilitated my learning of what and how to be a successful contractor.” And he offers the same advice to oth-

Atlas Plumbing's office manager Linda Martinez er: “For business owners, join and be an active member of your PHCC trade association, on all levels: local, state, and national.” Friedman was one of the founders of the Quality Service Contractors, an enhanced service group of PHCC–National Association. “This is where I learned how to be the ‘best of the best’ … how to be one of the top guns in the plumbing service business,” he says. “No, I was never a Navy fighter pilot, but I do understand what it means to be one. My best friend was one. PHCC can help you to be a successful business owner.” Controlling your destiny Friedman has learned a lot through the years, both through his business and through his work with Challenge Air (see sidebar). “I have learned that we set our own limits,” he says. “Sometimes, we find a

comfort zone and stay there, and that’s fine. For others, the sky is the limit. I’ve seen three-truck family businesses become 60-truck businesses and sell for $20 million, years later. We have the opportunity to control our own destiny.” Friedman relates the story of Jessica Cox, a woman he met through Challenge Air. Cox was born without arms; she surfs, has a black belt in karate, has a pilot’s license, and is a motivational speaker. “She says that early on, she learned of the power that comes from eliminating ‘I can’t’ from your vocabulary,” he says. “I find the strength and the courage needed to be the owner of a plumbing business in good times and bad through what I have been fortunate enough to learn from my friends in the industry, and from the families and special needs children who are served by Challenge Air.”

continued from page 13

Attitude, Not Altitude special needs children. “Each Fly Day is a party at a local airport,” he says. “Balloons, face painters, clowns, service animals, food, music … a fun day for the 100 to 150 families,” he says. “The pilots—all volunteers—will put their hands in the air during the flight to show that the challenged child is really flying the plane … at a 20-degree bank!” Friedman serves as the ground school instructor, telling families “a little about how an airplane works and a lot about 44 Southern PHC |

safety on the flight line.” What does he find most rewarding? “I guess the most rewarding experience is knowing that I’m fulfilling a promise that I made to a dying friend over 20 years ago,” he says. “I go to the cemetery every year on the anniversary of his death and share a beer with him, and thank him for the legacy that he left to me and to so many others.” To learn more about Challenge Air for Kids and Friends, visit

Sales & Management

How To Inspire Others To Peak Performance

Nido Qubein is an international speaker and consultant and president of High Point University. Write to High Point University, 833 Montlieu Ave., High Point, NC 27262-3598, or visit his website at

By Nido Qubein It's probably true that most people who work with us will never care as deeply as we do about building our business and serving our clients. If they did, they'd probably be working for themselves. Yet there's a great deal we can do to raise the level of their commitment and inspire them to peak performance. The operative word in the preceding sentence is “inspire.” You can demand that people who work for you be punctual, or that they perform at a certain level of output. Yet real commitment can only be inspired. And, inspiring people is what great leaders like John F. Kennedy and Lee Iaccoca did best. How do great leaders such as these inspire others to commit themselves to their goals? What they do is communicate their vision so forcefully that other people adopt it as their own vision. For example, in the early ’60s, President Kennedy set his sights on putting a man on the moon, and told the American people, "We can do it!" He said it with such conviction that masses of people believed it, and committed themselves to making it happen. And, sure enough, in less than a decade, the first human being had walked on the moon. Lee Iaccoca stepped into the ailing Chrysler Corporation and said, "We're going to turn this company around!" With clear goals, a solid plan of action, and a strong conviction, he was able to inspire enough commitment from the U.S. Congress that he secured the largest loan ever made to a private company. Then he inspired enough commitment in thousands of Chrysler workers to enable the company to pay back the loan ahead

of schedule. That's the formula for any leader to inspire commitment—clear goals, a solid plan of action, and a strong conviction. If you can communicate that to the people who work with you, you will have the kind of loyalty that makes them go the second mile. Of course, it takes more than inspiration to run a successful organization. One of the most helpful insights I ever learned about leading others is that people do things for their reasons, not for your reasons or for mine. So the goals, the plan of action, and the strong conviction have to be communicated in a way that directly answers the question: "What's in it for me?" When people honestly believe they will benefit directly from their efforts, and that the more they give the more they will benefit, they will perform at peak levels. Let me suggest 10 proven techniques for building a solid team: 1. Tie compensation, in every conceivable way, to the income people create. Profit sharing is one way you can do it. A better way is to structure all or a part of everyone's pay, from the janitor to the president, around a mutually beneficial incentive plan. That way, the better job they do, the more money they'll make. 2. Give constant public recognition for outstanding performance. So, if you can document that someone has done a job very well, give him or her a public pat on the back. If it's really good, throw in a tangible benefit. 3. Constantly ask for input and ideas. People are usually much more enthusiastic about supporting decisions and plans they help to make. So it helps

a great deal to get ideas and input from any staff person whose job will be affected by any upcoming decision. 4. Promote people on the basis of abilities, not just because they've performed well or have been around a long time. Make sure that anyone you promote has the skills and knowledge they need to do well in the new position. 5. Assume that everyone needs to be trained for every new assignment. If you're lucky, you'll have one or two people who can plow into almost anything and do well at it. But most people need initial and ongoing training. 6. Constantly play the role of coach and mentor. Encourage people to keep growing and taking on new challenges. Guide their growth in ways that benefit your organization. 7. Practice good human relations. Make people feel valued and important by treating them with dignity and respect. 8. Provide plenty of opportunities for people to grow, both personally and professionally. 9. Keep your personnel policies simple, clear, and fair—then firmly enforce them. It doesn't help to have policies that no one understands, and it's even worse to let people constantly get away with violating them. 10. Weed out the prima donnas and poor performers before they spoil the whole team. It takes a lot of patience and effort to build a solid team of people who will share and help you fulfill your vision, but the results will be well worth all you put into it. Nido Qubein is an international speaker and consultant. For more information, visit Southern PHC | 45

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