Eric Aune

Google launches Home Service Ads 
Earlier this year I wrote about the online giant entering the home services business.
Make the product switch, but it may cost you 
If you’ve ever worked on housing projects where interior designers and architects are involved you know firsthand how long it takes to make decisions and changes during the actual construction process.
Amazon offers residential contractors lead generation 
Would you hire a general contractor or painter on Amazon?
So you can solder, big deal 
It happened again… On February 19 a five-alarm fire at an apartment complex in Hempstead, N.Y., leaving nearly 450 people without a roof over their heads.
Tankless water heater solution for car washes  1
Recently I answered a call from a longtime client looking for a water heater replacement at one of his many self-serve car washes. The situation was edging closer and closer to an emergency.
“Why do we need to know this?” 
The cooler weather and shorter days have marked the beginning of the end for A/C tuneups, hot and muggy jobsites and even short sleeves for some of us here in the northland.
New contractor on the block  2
A few years ago as I was struggling to make it as the “new contractor on the block” it seemed that all the good advice and encouragement given to me seemed to be only that; good advice or encouragement.
Recruiting young people in the plumbing, pipefitting, welding and hvac service trades 3
As an outspoken advocate for the building trades and all they can do for our nation’s young people I have to say it has been a constant effort to spread the word locally and on the national level that trade school should be considered right alongside a four year college program.
Recruiting in the trade industries
A possible shift in how these workers are brought into the skilled trades may be closely aligned to a "Farm System" similar to that found in the major leagues. Attracting bench recruits to fill the needed roles of delivery and shop staff or field apprentice presents the need to create summer or seasonal employment positions.
Google, Nest and the mechanical contractor  1
The recent news of Google's acquisition of Nest, the maker of the wildly popular self-setting Wi-Fi enabled home thermostat and now smart smoke and carbon-monoxide alarm, has had the Internet a buzz about just what this may mean in the ways of privacy and home automation control.
Mentors give plumbing contractors, apprentices priceless advice, guidance  2
I just started teaching once again for the apprenticeship program in Minneapolis. It’s my seventh year doing so and one of the things I like to talk to all my apprentices about is mentoring. I start the conversation with a list of about 10 guidelines of advice I have learned along the way as both an apprentice and master plumber. Finding at least two mentors is number nine on my list.
Ten rules for young plumbers to live by  2
The apprentices in my classes are eager to learn and they are already out on the job everyday working their tails off to earn a nice paycheck. Over the years I have had students from all age groups and backgrounds and this year is no exception. I take the time to talk to each of them about what it means to work for a living. This is the first "real" job for some of my students so this is a great chance for me to get them started in the right direction with a few extra tools in their back pocket.
Listen more, talk less 1
If you ask any one of my close friends or colleagues whether I have a tendency to talk less and listen more you’ll likely get a very convincing argument against the notion that I remain reserved in my opinion.
Get the most out of social media 89

Small business owners all over the world have finally started to embrace social media as a viable tool to attract customers to their business. Be it the local florist or used car lot, chances are any business you interact with has a presence online, and has made efforts to interact with new and existing customers via social media. If you have a Facebook or Twitter account, you have seen the growth of popularity in marketing businesses via paid or viral ads and postings.

Boiler system water quality 83

Last month I revisited the after effects of neglected boiler system water and aluminum heat exchangers.  If you recall, you’ll remember the particular problem I encountered was a cracked heat exchanger and a loss of system pressure. The results were error codes flashing left and right with intermittent operation only made possible due to the incorporation of an automatic glycol feed system and a reset button on the boiler control.

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