FOCUS BEGINS ON PAGE 1 UNITARY & LIGHT COMMERCIAL HEAT PUMPS THE H VAC R CONTR ACTOR’S W EEK LY NE WS M AG A ZI NE S I NCE 1926 MAY 23, 2011 ■ $5.00 ■ VISIT US ONLINE AT WWW.ACHRNEWS.COM ■ fyi Contractors ■ ■ INDUSTRY BRIEFS Is the Next Generation Refrigerant Here? By Peter Powell of The NE WS Staff American Residential Services LLC (ARS), a national provider of emergency services for heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing and energy efficiency systems and equipment, has completed two acquisitions to increase its penetration in the Charlotte, N.C., and Columbus, Ohio, metropolitan markets. Alpine Mechancial Services LLC (New Britain, Pa.) is expanding its services to custom-ers in the Jacksonville, Fla., region, and has opened a satellite office in Stuart, Fla. Manufacturers ■ ■ Mi-T-M Corp. (Peosta, Iowa) has ap-pointed Essex Silver Line Sales West as its new rental rep group in the Northwest, covering the states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. ABB (Zurich, Switzerland) has purchased a controlling interest in U.S.-based Validus DC Systems , a provider of dc power infra-structure equipment for energy-intensive data centers, and it has agreed to acquire Mincom to broaden its software portfolio and establish the group as a leader in enterprise asset management (EAM) software and services. f there is to be a next generation of refrigerants in stationary equipment beyond hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), it appears they will be Hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs). And if that transition is to take place in the United States, it could be because of regulations or better energy efficiencies — or both. Three red flags on this topic include: • The beginning of production of automo-tive air conditioning in Europe using HFO-1234yf rather than HFC-134a. • An announcement from the United States Environmental Protection Agency that it has given “final approval for a new refriger-ant (HFO-1234yf) to be used in motor vehicle air conditioning.” • And the ongoing research by refrigerant I ■ See NEXT GENERATION page 26 Heat Pumps Gain in Popularity Industry Gives Business Advice, Offers Trend Predictions By Angela D. Harris Of The NE WS Staff Distributors ■ ■ WHY ASK WHY? Simple math reveals the increasing popularity of air-source heat pumps in comparison to 2010. AHRI tabulated a 17 percent increase in the year-to-date ship-ment numbers of air-source heat pumps for the first quarter of 2011. In January, the total air-source heat pump shipment num-bers were up 8 percent, totaling 126,611. The organization reported February’s numbers up 40 percent, as compared to the same month last year, totaling 147,522 units. March’s newly released numbers increased 9 percent to 177,934 as compared to March of 2010. Comfort Supply (Nashville, Tenn.) has opened its fifth location, in a 14,000-square-foot facility in Knoxville, Tenn. Lafayette Winair Co. (Lafayette, La.) has opened and is located at 125 Scott Street. Financial Reports ■ Ferguson’s (Newport News, Va.) like-for-like revenue growth for the first six months of fiscal year 2011 was 9 percent, with a further 4 percent of growth due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar. — compiled by Cherie Preville eat pump sales are on the rise, and the numbers for the first quarter of 2011 are showing a pattern for increased growth as 2011 progresses. Supported by the numbers recently released by the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), this growth could pres-ent HVACR contractors with new oppor-tunities to make money and provide more energy-efficient options to their custom-ers. How can this be accomplished? H Overall, the shipment of air-source heat pump equipment rose in what some would argue was a significant manner, especially in the climate regions where heat pump installations make the most sense. Debate as to why these numbers are increasing range from economic recovery to R-22 phaseout, but one of the more pop-ular contractor responses is that tax cred-its and utility rebates for choosing certain types of equipment are helping push that market sector’s numbers. Another prime consideration is the increasing cost of gas and electricity. ■ See HEAT PUMPS page 22 NOMINATIONS NOW ACCEPTED FOR THE NEXT: DIGITAL EDITION THIS ISSUE SPONSORED BY: Best in Class 2011 2 0 1 1 B Best est I Instructor nstruct or C Contest ont est Nomination deadline: June 3, 2011. ls. Go to www.achrnews.com/instructor for details.