JCI/York Hosts Trade Editors on Tour of Relocated Manufacturing Facility
Since Johnson Controls acquired the York International brand in 2005, many changes have been implemented to keep the York brand strong in the HVAC industry. One recent change has been the movement of the residential packaged product line from the Norman, OK, facility to the Wichita, KS facility. Sources say the move allows for production line realignment, improved material flows, standardization of residential components, and enhanced focus on those residential packaged products. The move allows the Norman facility floor space to use for their plant revitalization activities for the York commercial products produced there.

The Wichita plant consists of 20 buildings on 60 acres of land and houses over a thousand employees. All of York’s residential split systems are manufactured in this facility. The Wichita plant recently added advanced manufacturing tools and processes and a new material flow in the manufacturing part of the plan for added efficiency and improved quality.

An important focus of the plant is the Customer Quality Focus Area, where manufacturing operations managers meet daily to inspect the appearance and workmanship of randomly selected "shipment-ready" equipment.

Continuous improvement activities are managed by cross functional groups called, Value Stream Teams, focused on product/process improvements that directly impact product quality. Successful projects include: reducing transit damage with better packaging; eliminating refrigerant leaks by improving the brazing processes with design changes; and better fixtures and assembly methods. Increased training for production personnel and working with suppliers to improve the quality of parts used are also results of the Value Stream Teams.

The facility's engineering department features certified labs, where heating, cooling, sound and vibration, and airflow testing occur.

The lab also has a Lansmont Transit tester, where the vibrations and impact of transporting York equipment is simulated, to test the durability of the equipment when exposed to the rigors of transportation.

New products are developed through a formalized, Product Development Process (PDP), where the focus is on achieving product development results that consistently meet quality, performance, sales, reliability, and service targets.

In addition to manufacturing operations, the site houses purchasing, safety, shipping/distribution, accounting, engineering test labs and technical services departments. york.com — Kate Kelly

Lennox Selected for Partnership with NJPA Purchasing Cooperative
The National Joint Powers Alliance (NJPA) has awarded Lennox Industries, Inc. an exclusive, two-year contract to provide HVAC equipment to NJPA members. NJPA is a member-owned buying cooperative serving public and private schools K-12 through higher education, state and local governments, and non-profit organizations.

"Lennox has been selected for its high efficiency, industry-leading products and excellent reputation in the heating and air condition industry," says Mike Hajek, director of contracts and marketing for NJPA.

"This contract allows us to continue our commitment to providing sustainable, energy-efficient solutions to school and government markets," says Susan Herndon, vice president, Commercial Sales and Global Accounts, Lennox Industries. "We look forward to helping our customers lower their energy bills, save on service and maintenance, and explore green building solutions like our new solar-powered HVAC product, the SunSource Commercial Energy System."

Aireco, M&M Controls Receive Belimo Platinum Status
Belimo Americas (belimo.com), manufacturers of damper actuators and control valves for commercial HVAC systems, announced that Aireco and M&M Controls have been named Belimo Platinum Distributors for 2012.

“Aireco and M&M Controls have positively represented the Belimo brand by providing product knowledge, inventory, warranty service and application experience,” reported Belimo sources.

Aireco is a regional HVAC wholesaler operating in the Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. markets. Aireco (aireco.com) has grown to include 41 branch offices.

M & M Controls (mmcontrols.net) is a leading supplier of environmental controls and systems to the commercial and industrial HVAC marketplace, serving the southcentral Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and D.C. area.

Bosch TA Series Heat Pump Named 'Most Efficient' Product
Bosch Thermotechnology North America announced that the Bosch TA Series Geothermal Heat Pump has been awarded the EnergyStar, "Most Efficient" designation for 2011. According to sources. it's the only complete geothermal line in the industry to meet such criteria.

The Bosch TA Series offers flexible installation applications, including vertical, horizontal, counter flow, and split system configurations from two- to six- tons. The unit has been engineered and built to require less energy consumption while providing precise heating and cooling for many applications. With less energy consumption, home owners can achieve savings of nearly 60% over traditional HVAC systems, sources report. boschusa.com

AHRI Announces 2012 Leadership at Annual Meeting
The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) announced new leadership, with new Chairman, Ajita Rajendra, president/chief operating officer, A.O. Smith, during its 2011 Annual Meeting, held November 12-15, 2011, in Bonita Springs, FL. In his acceptance address, Rajendra emphasized the need for AHRI to work with industry partners to pass key legislation, including two consensus agreements establishing new federal minimum efficiency standards for small duct, high velocity air conditioners, and heat pump pool heaters, and requiring the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop a new test procedure for water heaters. He also called on members to work together to make AHRI’s certification program even more credible in the U.S. and globally. http://bit.ly/AHRIleadership

Embassy Group, Ltd. Adds 5
Embassy Group Ltd., Elgin, IL, has welcomed five HVAC vendors to the Group, effective Jan. 1, 2012. Embassy Group is a member-owned HVAC/PVF buying group.

The new vendors are:

  • JB Industries (instruments, vacuum pumps, tools)
  • Nu-Calgon (specialty chemicals)
  • Ritchie Engineering/Yellow Jacket (charging hoses, gauges)
  • Sterling/Beacon Morris (gas unit heaters, hydronic heaters, air units)
  • Unico (high-velocity systems/chillers).

"These companies will be a great addition to an already stellar HVAC vendor lineup," says Mike Lepley, director of business development. embassygroupltd.com

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Call for Nominations: Danfoss 'Envisioneer of the Year'
Danfoss is seeking nominations for the third annual EnVisioneer of the Year competition. The competition recognizes U.S. end users, building owners, and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that have introduced a new product, opened a new facility, or invested in a building or system upgrade in the past 18 months, using Danfoss products or solutions for significant energy and/or environmental savings.

Interested participants may enter the competition by submitting an application no later than January 12, 2012, to Lisa Tryson, director, corporate communications and public relations, at Danfoss, at LisaTryson@danfoss.com or 410/513-1142.

As part of the recognition, a donation will be made to "Rebuilding Together," in honor of the selected 2012 EnVisioneer of the Year. Rebuilding Together is the nation’s leading nonprofit working to preserve affordable homeownership and revitalize communities.

For more information about the EnVisioneer of the Year competition and to submit an entry, visit http://bit.ly/envisioneeraward.

Mitsubishi Contributes Systems to 'Extreme Makeover' TV Show
The Friday, Nov. 4, episode of ABC’s hit TV series "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" featured split-ductless heat pump systems donated by Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating (shown). The home makeover was provided for the Hill family of Ottawa, KS. The family requires a special home configuration to accommodate family member Staff Sgt. Allen Hill, who suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of serving in Iraq with the U.S. military. The team needed to design and build a home in which the risk of loud and startling noises —which could trigger a PTSD episode — would be minimized.

Show producers were interested in Mitsubishi Electric cooling and heating systems, because the manufacturer’s energy-efficient ductless heat pumps operate at low sound levels.

“The Mitsubishi Electric split-ductless heat pump systems installed in the Hill family home will help minimize the amount of sudden noise, decreasing the chance that Staff Sgt. Hill will suffer a PTSD episode in his home,” says Bill Rau, senior vice president and general manager, Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating. “We’re honored to have the opportunity to help make Staff Sgt. Hill’s home a place of comfort and peace, a place where he can relax and continue on his road to recovery.”

The split-ductless heat pump systems were provided by O’Connor Company, Inc., a certified Mitsubishi Electric distributor based in Wichita, KS. The systems were installed by Bill Kite, vice president of CDL Electric, Pittsburg, KS.

APPOINTMENTS
Birch Taylor has been named Emerson’s vice president and general manager, distribution services. Taylor will be responsible for leading Emerson’s distribution services business organization, including sales, marketing, service engineering, distribution center and educational services. He replaces Mark Gibson, who moves to an executive-level sales position in Emerson Climate Technologies Retail Solutions business.

Ritchie Engineering Company, Inc., has named Michael Lanners vice president, domestic sales and marketing. He will work with Brian Flynn, executive vice president at Ritchie Engineering, to drive growth, sales, and product strategy.

Emerson Launches eBook on Compressor Electronics

Emerson Climate Technologies, a business of Emerson, has launched an eBook titled, “Understanding Compressor Electronics,” designed to serve as a resource to the HVACR industry on this emerging technology.

Emerson created the eBook to take an in-depth look at the dynamics of compressor electronics in the HVACR industry and how this technology is helping enhance system performance and reliability.

The eBook’s first chapter, “An Introduction to Compressor Electronics” is currently available on the Emerson Climate Technologies website at http://bit.ly/nGCch1.

The eBook series will consist of four chapters, which will be released over the next few months.

Content of the eBook will include:

  • Introduction to Compressor Electronics
  • Addressing Key Industry Issues
  • How Compressor Electronics Work
  • Electronics’ Advanced Capabilities.

READ MORE about these stories:

HVACR distributor Ferguson made a sizable donation to the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors (PHCC) Educaitonal Foundation: http://bit.ly/fergusonphcc

American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) has released updated guidance on building energy audits: “Procedures for Commercial Building Energy Audits.” The new publication includes time-saving tips for energy auditors. http://bit.ly/energyaudithowto

The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) has relaunched its PhaseOutFacts.org website. The site provides information on the phase out of ozone depleting refrigerants. http://bit.ly/ahriphaseoutfacts

Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) has named five new members to the HARDI board of directors. The new directors are: Joey Boles; Tom Roberts; Michael Luther; Sam Roti; and Bill Bergamini. http://bit.ly/newhardiboard

Women in HVACR has become the 35th endorsing organization of the International Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigerating Exposition (AHR Expo), the world’s largest HVACR event. WHVACR will also host an educational session during the show, “The Destruction of ODS for Carbon Credits - How to Turn Used Ozone-depleting Substances Into Cash.” http://bit.ly/WHVACRatEXPO