thOctober 5, 2007 Meeting Notes
For the First Meeting of the HVAC Big and Bold Group
Intro- Mike Messenger welcomed every one to the meeting and laid out the challenge:
“Produce a strategic plan in 90 days or less that develops strategies to address a
number of HVAC installation and performance problems identified through the
big and bold energy efficiency workshop process. The group agreed to give its
best shot. “
I. Review of Mission Statement- A proposed mission statement was sent to the group
before the meeting. The group suggested several changes to the proposed mission
statement to broaden the scope of the group’s review and to add the task of
developing a vision for the HVAC industry. The revised mission statement is shown
“The HVAC working group will develop a suite of strategies to reduce the energy
and peak use associated with the design, selection, installation and maintenance of
new central air conditioning systems and recommend demonstrations or tests for
some or all of these strategies. The results of its initial work will be included in
the CEC’s strategic plan to the Legislature and provided to the CPUC and its
utilities to help guide their strategic planning process. ”
Mike Messenger clarified that these pilot tests or programs should be designed to be
finished within the next 18 months to be consistent with the goal of having successful
pilots incorporated into the utility program portfolios, industry practice and local
building departments by the first half of 2009. These pilots will be designed to test
the effectiveness (cost, energy and savings, and feasibility) of each strategy and to
support the vision of a rebuilt HVAC industry that renews its commitment to
customer service and quality installations. The group also discussed that the Main
focus of the group’s work is on residential and small commercial applications for
units up to 20 tons with SEER and EER ratings
II. . Discussion of Strategies to Explore
The group discussed each of the six strategies listed below and agreed AFTER
DISCUSSION they all should be explored.
1. New mechanisms to develop private-sector based business initiatives to
successfully encourage installers to pull building permits for replacement of
existing HVAC systems and comply with energy standards requirements that
ensure quality installation via duct sealing and refrigerant charge.
2. New Public-Private agreements to establish market motivators and methods to
ensure that quality control for replacement and maintenance of air
conditioning systems becomes a consistently delivered service to customers
3. New strategies to reduce the cost and reduce the time needed and make it
easier to pull permits for HVAC replacement
4. Technologies or mechanisms that customers or contractors can use to monitor
HVAC system performance levels over time
5. New technologies that will automatically perform diagnostic tests on systems
over their useful life and provide warning signals for detected performance
problems to the homeowner or contractors or both.
6. New technologies to shift the timing of energy required for cooling systems
from on peak 12 to 6 PM to off peak ( nighttime).
In addition the group added the following strategies for inclusion in the report
a. Consideration of new training to get HVAC sales reps to sell CAC
systems based on system performance rather than SEER ratings,
potential use of CEE Tiers 1 and 2 or new tiers and to train HVAC
technicians on how to balance systems and test for duct quality.
b. Consideration of methods to reduce the load on HVAC systems
through better building envelopes and reduction of the air side load of
moving air through ducting systems.
c. Consideration of demand response or curtailment applications for
d. Consider more emphasis on the new technologies strategy ( P
Kuhlman) - 20% improvement could occur if strategies 1 and 2 are
adopted- versus 80% for strategy 4 new technologies.
e. Strategies available to manufacturers and distributors to encourage
high quality installation including:
i. Withholding warrantees for low quality installations for jobs
that have not been quality controlled.
ii. Refusing to sell to installers/ distributors who don’t have
trained technicians that pull permits.
iii. Providing discounts on equipment where contractor guarantees
that quality control checks will be completed for every job.
iv. Recognition of contractors with high quality install reputations
or based on sample of their work.
v. Development of a brand name associated with high efficiency
II. Discussion of Draft Outline and Literature Search-
Mike Messenger went through the main headings on the outline and asked for
comments or omissions.
The following additions were suggested:
1. Add a Vision section and describe the elements of a better future; include
some specific milestones for 2010, 2015 and 2020 per the CPUC order.
2. Discuss the energy and peak implications of continuing with the status quo in
this market in the background section.
3. Involve and discuss the role of CALBO and Contractors licensing board in
whatever strategies the group develops.
4. A revised outline is attached.
III. General Discussion- Why don’t Installers comply with T24
1. A. Discussion of the Prisoner’s Dilemma for HVAC contractors in the
This is a case of the 'prisoner's dilemma' (familiar to economics students):
*If all contractors pulled permits and did good work, they would all benefit with
higher pay, and so would society because of higher quality control and lower energy
*If a few contractors don't get permits, the few benefit but undermine the sales for
all of the contractors who do get permits.
*If no one get permits, they all undermine each other due to lower profit margins
and reputation , plus society loses ( from higher energy use) . This is close to the
actual case for replacements.
The prisoner’s dilemma is: Should I get a permit if I know or suspect that even a few
of my competitors are not going to pull permits and are not likely to be caught?
Pulling a permit will result in lost sales UNLESS a contractor has reasonable
assurance that his competitors will also pull permits. The only solution from
economics is to enact laws that ensure a high probability that each contractor will
comply and thus give all contractor’s an incentive to pull permits and or perform high
quality work to get to the goal of performing good work and higher profits. Our
group needs to increase both the number of installers doing quality work and the
perception in the industry that it is bad business not to comply
III. Areas where more information needs to be collected.
1. What are the average energy and peak impacts of a failure to perform the duct
sealing and refrigerant charge checks post installation of a CAC system in an
existing home (vintage 1960-1995)?
2. What is the State of the art for on board diagnostic equipment built into
HVAC equipment that can detect improper refrigerant charge and or air flow
across the condenser problems?
3. What Methods or techniques exist to provide feedback to customers on quality
of installations performed at their homes and actual impact on energy bills? 4. What fraction of current CAC sales include a Maintenance contracts in current
market? How much incremental energy performance is gained on average
from a maintenance contract tune ups? Will automated diagnostics interfere
with this market?
5. What types of education or marketing campaigns are needed to empower
customers to care about the energy performance of their systems and or to
value the pulling of a permit? To get customers to take action to get their
homes tuned up every five to ten years?
6. What fraction of the current HVAC technician force have received NATE
training or certification?
IV. Organization and Next Steps- Research needed
The group created the following sub committees with list of persons interested in
each topic. Mike Messenger has identified possible team leaders in bold. If any
leader wants to decline the invitation to be leader, please call Mike Messenger..
Sub Committee Topic Team Members 1. Develop Market based incentives for Team Leaders= Bill Pennington and contractors who comply with the code and Susie Evans , ( potentially Bob Wiseman) use quality control procedures after the
installation of a CAC system that are Team Members-Eric Emblem, John verified and reported to distributor or Burdette, Paul Kyllo, David Canny and manufacturer. The Goal is to increase Lyman Lockwood, James Hussey recognition and value of work performed
by contractors who meet quality control
specs and code by encouraging distributors
and manufacturers to provide them with
better business terms or to refuse to deal
with contractors who do not meet code.
2. Development of new Tier or Brand to Team Leader- Marshall Hunt identify CAC systems that have higher
operating efficiencies and a track record Team Members-Bill Pennington, Paul of high quality installation- Alternatives to Kuhlman, John Burdette, Dick Bourne,
selling based on SEER levels for existing John Proctor (?), Iain Walker (?), Robert
and new cooling system technologies Davis (PG&E Test Labs) Paul Kyllo, Rick
3. Increased training for HVAC techs and Team Leader- Charles Segerstrom, sales representatives to increase quality Team Members- Susie Evans, Eric installations and permit pulling Rmblem, Kristin Heinemeier, and Rodney
Davis, Scott Johnson, Doug Beaman, Rick
4. Providing Periodic Feedback on CAC Team Leader- Mike Messenger System Performance to Customers and Members-Susie Evans and Marshall Hunt, Contractors
5. Education campaign on need for Team Leader- David Canny, customers to perform preventative Members- Kristin Heinemeir, and Rodney maintenance on HVAC systems Davis, and Shea Dibble 6. Reduce the cost or burden of compliance Team Leader- Doug Beaman, with pulling permits for HVAC Members- Bill Pennington, Charles replacements Segerstrom, Eric Emblem and Randall
Higa, Bob Guenther? 7. Identify opportunities to develop new Team Leader- John Proctor-
technologies that are optimized for Hot Dry Team Members- Paul Kuhlman, Edwin climates in the west, permanently shift load Hornquist, and Paul Kyllo and or are demand responsive.
8. Discussion of the Status Quo trends in Team Leader- Bob Wiseman and Mike industry, its likely economic and energy Messenger consequences and the group’s resulting Team Members- John Burdette, Susie
Vision for where the industry should go to Evans, Marshall Hunt, Bob Wiseman and
mitigate or eliminate the negative Paul Kuhlman. Bob Guenther? consequences identified above.
V. Next Steps- Mike Messenger will try to recruit leaders for each subcommittee and get
them to help organize calls to reviewing draft outlines and strategies to be discussed by
each subcommittee: A general outline for each subcommittee is provided below:
I. Statement of the Problem or Opportunity that the Subcommittee is
wants to discuss and develop strategies for.
II. Description of Strategies developed by the subcommittee
III. Identify what is needed to flesh out or develop the details of the
strategy. Examples might be information, test data, participants
from outside our group, key industry participants, written
IV. Ideas for pilot testing the strategies using local governments or
V. Summary of anticipated costs and benefits of the strategy if
adopted and successful.
VI. Recommended next steps to get specific strategies tested.