Days of on-off control are fading

RSS
We ran a story a couple months ago about a project called the Anchor Homestead, a 4,500-sq.ft. 1850s farmhouse on Boston’s south shore that started its life with a gravity steam system. It wouldn’t be much of a stretch to guess that it was originally coal-fired. It’s projects like this that make me think about how far we’ve come.

We ran a story a couple months ago about a project that’s called the Anchor Homestead, a 4,500-sq.ft. 1850s farmhouse on Boston’s south shore that started its life with a gravity steam system. It wouldn’t be much of a stretch to guess that it was originally coal-fired. It’s projects like this that make me think about how far we’ve come.

Naturally, the heating system had been “upgraded” over the last 150 years to the point where it no longer functioned.  Our story talks about how Rich Swatton, president of ModCon Service & Support Inc., Westford, Mass., and his cohorts fixed the home in Hanover, Mass. All of the old black iron pipe was ripped out and replaced with PEX with supply and return lines going to each heat emitter. The PEX was manifolded and fed by ECM variable-speed circulators. In the basement, a modulating condensing boiler with a 5:1 turndown ratio and outdoor reset supplies hot water.

That’s a long way from shoveling coal into a gravity steam boiler. The days of on-off control are fading too, an not just in an old farmhouse in Hanover, Mass. Modulating, condensing, variable speed, variable water flow or variable refrigerant flow were all over the recent AHR Expo in Dallas. We begin our AHR coverage on page 1 of this issue, written by Senior Editor Candace Roulo and myself. We only have a limited amount of space in this issue and I would encourage you to read the entire 3,000+ word story on www.contractormag.com. We’re planning on turning all of the product photos from the show into a slideshow to accompany the story.

For example, Grundfos introduced its Magna 3 commercial hydronic circulator that the company says will reduce energy use by 85%. The AutoAdapt function allows the variable-speed ECM-based circulator to use an integrated logic algorithm to “learn” the varying energy-usage patterns of an application over time, enabling the software to automatically determine the most efficient operating point.

Both ClimateMaster and WaterFurnace have taken already efficient geothermal heat pumps and converted them to variable capacity with EERs in the 40s.

Xylem previewed its integrated VFD sensorless control on Bell & Gossett in-line pumps. Available in the second quarter of 2013, the variable-speed drive sensorless controller uses advanced pumping software and algorithms to create an energy saving pump system.

Taco introduced its GeoSentry Geothermal Zone Valve that uses microcircuit-based logic to activate a gear-driven, electronic actuator.

Lochinvar’s Armor wall-mount commercial water heaters are not just 96% efficient, they use a Smart System operating control that includes a built-in cascading sequencer that allows for water heaters with different Btuh inputs to be installed together to maximize turndown capability.

I don’t have enough space to tell you everything that the ecobee thermostats can do, but let’s just say there’s an app for that. The Nest learning thermostat has gotten a lot of press lately but ecobee has contractor-friendly features, such as its Contractor Portal, which gives you a web connection into your customers thermostats, that you must check out. ecobee remains the go-to thermostat for professionals.

It was all that long ago that we didn’t have equipment that could “learn” usage patterns through software algorithms.

We’re a long way from shoveling coal. Think about how far we’ve come.

***

On a completely separate note, I want to welcome my friend, Eric Aune, to our pages. Eric has run Aune Plumbing LLC, a one-man shop in Zimmerman, Minn., since 2004, installing and servicing plumbing, hydronic, radiant, and solar equipment. He is also a veteran apprentice instructor at Dunwoody College of Technology in Minneapolis. Eric is going to write for us every month about his experiences and observations on being a small contractor. You can catch up with Eric at his Aune-Plumbing-LLC Facebook fan page and on his blog at http://auneplumbing.blogspot.com/ where he writes rants with headlines such as, “Your brother-in-law did what?” He is also a co-owner, along with John Mesenbrink, of the website Mechanical-Hub.com. Eric lives with his lovely wife, Heather, and their two boys, for whom Eric is an indefatigable Boy Scout leader. He is also one of the funniest guys I know. I’m looking forward to seeing where Eric’s fertile mind takes us.

Follow me on Twitter @bobmader

Discuss this Blog Entry 87

on Nov 21, 2013

Thank you for this very great information.
raspberry ketone diet exposed

on Jan 4, 2014

found this your post because I have been searching for some information about it almost three hours. You helped me a lot indeed and reading this your article I have found many new and useful information about this subject. Finance coupon 2014

on Feb 3, 2014

have been searching for some information about it almost three hours. You helped me a lot indeed and reading this your article I have found many new and useful information about this subject lens and camera hire

on Feb 13, 2014

about it almost three hours. You helped me a lot indeed and reading this your article I have found many new and useful information about this subject lens and camera hire Best Exercise for Weight Loss

on Feb 4, 2014

I have been searching for some information about it almost three hours. You helped me a lot indeed and reading this your article I have found many new and useful information about this subject is there a way to make money online

on Jun 11, 2014

Nice to read your article! I am looking forward to sharing your adventures and experiences.
Photo Magic clients

on Jan 13, 2014

friends think that the Tasmanian Devils are extinct or that they didn't even exist! I'll show them this post low testosterone

on Jan 29, 2014

his very great information. rebelmouse

on Apr 19, 2014

This statement will develop our economic system and enhance our water facilities, while developing tasks,” said Quinn. new computer technology

on Apr 21, 2014

Months, thank God" comment is telling. Please be sure to interview scrap dealers as part of your article. Buy Twitter Followers UK

on Jun 16, 2014

This is really a nice and informative, containing all information and also has a great impact on the new technology. Thanks for sharing it
how to spy on a cell phone

on Jun 16, 2014

While almost every specialist said they also do on the internet investigation to find new items and technological innovation, it is not the same as meeting the right person face-to-face and actually feeling and in contact with a item. bats in attic

on Jun 26, 2014

So, with all these electronic interaction improvements, are company exhibitions and other face-to-face conferences still necessary. he has a good point

on Jul 2, 2014

This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I love seeing blog that understand the value of providing a quality resource for free.
black mica page

on Jul 3, 2014

Very useful post. This is my first time i visit here. I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion. Really its great article. Keep it up.
free annual credit report gov

on Jul 6, 2014

Only aspire to mention ones content can be as incredible. This clarity with your post is superb and that i may think you’re a guru for this issue. High-quality along with your concur permit me to to seize your current give to keep modified by using approaching blog post. Thanks a lot hundreds of along with you should go on the pleasurable get the job done.
How to find a soul mate

on Jul 8, 2014

This is very educational content and written well for a change. It's nice to see that some people still understand how to write a quality post.!
red diesel

on Jul 12, 2014

Thanks you very much for sharing these links. Will definitely check this out..
design craft exhibitions

on Jul 13, 2014

Im no expert, but I believe you just made an excellent point. You certainly fully understand what youre speaking about, and I can truly get behind that.
Northpark Residences Yishun

on Jul 18, 2014

I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not tht good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he ejoyed it as well!
local seo denver

on Jul 18, 2014

Thanks for sharing this information. I really like your blog post very much. You have really shared a informative and interesting blog post with people..
muscle building tips

on Jul 18, 2014

I am very enjoyed for this blog. Its an informative topic. It help me very much to solve some problems. Its opportunity are so fantastic and working style so speedy.
how to get rid of herpes for good

on Jul 14, 2014

You know your projects stand out of the herd. There is something special about them. It seems to me all of them are really brilliant!
Surprise Blinds & Shutters

on Jul 14, 2014

Admiring the time and effort you put into your blog and detailed information you offer!..

Surprise Electrician

on Jul 14, 2014

I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not tht good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he ejoyed it as well!
Laundry Detergent Fundraiser

on Jul 17, 2014

I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs. go to my blog

on Jul 15, 2014

An interesting dialogue is price comment. I feel that it is best to write more on this matter, it may not be a taboo topic however usually individuals are not enough to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers.
hire a wedding band

on Jul 16, 2014

This article is an appealing wealth of informative data that is interesting and well-written. I commend your hard work on this and thank you for this information. You’ve got what it takes to get attention.
pet franchise

on Jul 18, 2014

Metro-Detroit area. He informed me that there is a lot of shifting of components, such as valuable copper, from garden to garden that goes on, and from what he understand most of it does end up in Chinese suppliers. personalised christmas stockings ireland

on Jul 21, 2014

Furthermore, as copper robberies are generally resolved as transgressions, those individuals charged pay relatively low charges and provide short jail conditions. click here

on Jul 10, 2014

Thanks for the valuable information and insights you have so provided here...
Fashion Blog

on Jul 22, 2014

Good post but I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Appreciate it!
EvoWP

on Jan 30, 2014

vaccination campaigns, but we need your help to immunize vulnerable children everywhere cadeau

on Feb 2, 2014

the most strict plumbing code of all the 50 states (tied perhaps with only New York), from what we hear it is indeed committed to expanding and supporting new technology where water delivery and expulsion is concerned. Although the Chicago area naturally receives the most attention, it's honestly an exciting time to be doing business as a plumbing company in southern Illinois. iPhone app reviews

on Feb 2, 2014

have an excellent coaching style to let a number of people very easily gain knowledge of several advanced subject matter pkv kind

on Jul 7, 2014

Is no connection between time to 50 % placed and generate as calculated by departure-from. Tiling Marlborough

on Feb 2, 2014

Thank you for this very great information. peninggi badan nhcp

on Mar 31, 2014

The Nest learning thermostat has gotten a lot of press lately but ecobee has contractor-friendly features, such as its Contractor Portal, which gives you a web connection into your customers thermostats, that you must check out. coupon code mltd

on Apr 30, 2014

This was actually what I was looking for, and I am glad to came here! Thanks for sharing the such information with us. beste mediaplayer

on May 23, 2014

The new service effort moves around the idea that is unique to Wilo: “Caring daily to make simpler,” through an improved client care experience. visit

on Feb 4, 2014

visit this website. I found some interesting things and I will apply to the development of my blog. Thanks for sharing useful information DMA Portland reviews

on Feb 5, 2014

you only buy HerSolution Gel from the official website so you are covered by their product guarantee. Kansas City Custom Cabinets remodeling

on Jun 10, 2014

Thank you for this blog. That’s all I can say. You most definitely have made this blog into something thats eye opening and important. You clearly know so much about the subject, youve covered so many bases. Great stuff from this part of the internet. Best Espresso Machine

on Dec 18, 2013

wow, great, I was wondering how to cure acne naturally. and found your site by google, learned a lot, now i’m a bit clear. I’ve bookmark your site and also add rss. keep us updated.
interview podcasts

on Jun 27, 2014

wow, great, I was wondering how to cure acne naturally. and found your site by google, learned a lot, now. free netflix account

on Jul 4, 2014

There is no purpose why a plumbing specialist can’t cause the way and set the example. Baby Shower Hostess Gifts

on Dec 28, 2013

"This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog. "
How to make a website

on Jun 21, 2014

And if I have a level route like, ‘The sun blows up and all the figures become falls of h2o and become mist’, I want to provide the home something to comprehend creatively what. get Botox in Sydney

on Jun 25, 2014

Hmm… I read blogs on a similar topic, but i never visited your blog. I added it to favorites and i’ll be your constant reader.
Jan Griffin

on Jul 15, 2014

So by these examples, it’s easy to see that plumbing can be a profitable career. venus factor reviews

Please or Register to post comments.

What's As I See It?

Robert Mader's Blog

Contributors

Robert Mader

Bob Mader is the editor of CONTRACTOR magazine, Green Mechanical Contractor magazine, and Radiant Living magazine. He has been writing about plumbing, mechanical, green building and HVACR topics for...
Blog Archive

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×