Whether you are an HVAC business owner or planning to join the industry, you must know what the future holds in 2023. The industry has experienced a lot, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, which inspired more use of contactless technology that also influenced HVAC trends.
Equally important is to acknowledge the industry’s rapid growth from USD 16.54 billion in 2021 to USD 17.45 billion in 2022. According to Grand View Research, the industry market value is forecasted to reach USD 26.93 billion at a compound growth rate of 5.6%.
Most people are expected to join the industry putting pressure on current business owners. Keeping your business afloat requires keeping abreast of the new HVAC industry trends in 2023.
Environmentally Friendly HVAC
Efficiency and eco-friendliness will likely take center stage in the new year. HVAC business owners must be prepared to help homeowners get the necessary equipment, repairs, maintenance, replacement, and installation. You must prepare to give customers HVAC solutions tailored to their comfort and budget.
What’s Likely To Change?
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) raised the lowest efficiency standards for air-source heat pumps and central air conditioners in the new year.
SEER AND HSPF Rating
By January 1st, 2023, all systems on the market must meet the minimum standards. The lowest minimum Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) standard will be raised to 14 from the current 13 for those in the northern states and 15 for people in the southern states.
The minimum heating efficiency rate for air-source heat pumps is also likely to be raised. Heating Seasonal Performance Factor HSPF) which describes the efficiency of the heat pump will be raised from 8.2 to 8.8.
Fortunately, the federal government won’t require replacing the old heat pumps or air conditioners when the new minimum standards take effect. In 2023, all 13 SEER equipment won’t be on the market. All equipment will be rated 14 SEER, and the heat pump must have an HSPF rating of 8.8.
Switch to Safer Refrigerant
Manufacturers will introduce new refrigerants for use in new air conditioners. Residential cooling systems have used R-410a or hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants since 2010. It has high global warming potential and can harm the environment if it leaks.
Therefore, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will phase out its importation by 85 percent over the next 15 years. By the beginning of 2023, new cooling systems will have refrigerants with a low potential for global warming as part of HVAC industry trends.
Manufacturers will have to build heat pumps and air conditioning units compatible with R-454b. It’s more environmentally friendly and mildly flammable. Retrofitting current equipment to use the new refrigerant is not possible.
Refrigerants are hazardous when exposed to the environment. Every HVAC technician must handle refrigerants to protect the environment. Achieving this requires using appropriate equipment and training in handling refrigerants.
Using 3D Printers
Supply chain issues hit the HVAC service industry after the pandemic. These have encouraged rising prices and long wait times for supplies. Many business owners struggle to find repair supplies for boilers, furnaces, and other HVAC equipment.
This has been resulting from a lack of appropriate individual parts readily available. Increased demand has led manufacturers to explore other avenues for producing and repairing HVAC equipment. No wonder 3D printing is a leading solution today.
3D Printing of HVAC Parts
The outbreak of the pandemic led to increased demand for various forms of climatic control technology leading to a shortfall. Waiting times also skyrocketed for emergency replacements. The adoption of 3D printing is a wonderful solution for the production of HVAC equipment and parts.
Companies such as Daikin developed Fluoropolymer PFA used in powder bed fusion. It’s very effective for various products in HVAC production. The company has been using 3D printing in making parts such as spacers. This new technology allows for expanding production to various products.
PFA has exceptional heat and chemical resistance making it suitable for producing HVAC parts. It’s also useful in production parts for other industries, such as chemical plants, medical equipment, semiconductors, and oil/gas. Implementing 3D printing offers a bright future in advancing parts production in the HVAC industry.
R&D Tax Credit
Companies and startups can enjoy tax credits for the research and development of HVAC products through 3D printing. Business owners can include wages for their technical teams for creating, testing, and reviewing 3D printed prototypes as a percentage of eligible time spent on R&D.
Time spent integrating 3D printing hardware and software in your business to improve the process is eligible for the tax credit. There’s also a chance to recover the cost of filaments consumed during the development process for modeling and pre-production.
Even after managing supply chain issues, there’s great potential for 3D printing in the HVAC industry in the areas of production and repair. Manufacturers can now produce more components that were not possible previously. Every HVAC business owner must understand the prospects of using 3D printers to boost performance.
Use of Smart Thermostats
As the HVAC industry faces a lot of changes, smart thermostats are part of them, including new installations, upgrades, and maintenance. Its popularity is attributed partly to the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) for making life easier. Homeowners are looking for ways to make things easier at home while lowering their carbon footprint.
Some smart thermostats are marketed as DIY kits to lure homeowners looking to save some money. However, it’s not the best option, especially for older homes needing a wiring upgrade or older HVAC systems.
The poor installation makes the thermostat fail to work properly. Homeowners may also leave some wires bare, creating a fire hazard. Failing to work as expected defeats the purpose of investing in a smart thermostat in the first place.
HVAC business owners must take advantage of this by focusing on homeowners who need assistance with the system. It has the potential to collect data that you can turn into actionable insights which can tell most triggers for alerts and service calls.
You must prepare to set yourself up for success in the new year by having more customers adopt smart thermostats. Equally important is to begin installing units with higher Energy Star ratings. Customers are willing to pay extra to play their part in conserving the environment.
Zoning has proved very effective as homeowners are looking for better temperature control. It involves having one or more HVAC systems divided into zones with independent thermostats.
The feature may also involve having one undivided system using multiple sensors operating on averages. Some benefits of zoning to property owners include improving HVAC system efficiency, encouraging even room temperature, and lowering energy bills.
Embracing Digital Zoning
Property owners can enjoy additional benefits by embracing smart zoning. This turns each part of the home into an independently controlled zone. It allows for identifying parts in the home that aren’t in use or have temperature imbalances instead of a big group of rooms.
This allows the system to run less, saving homeowners up to 25% in energy bills. Digital zoning relies on connected devices that boost efficiency over time using over-the-air software enhancement. Smart vents vary airflow levels compared to being open and closed like most damper zones.
Digital zoning is customized to give property owners maximum control and efficiency gains. It’s high time HVAC business owners consider adding this service to their offerings. It will attract homeowners who enjoy more comfort while lowering their monthly energy bills.
Technicians have worked remotely throughout the pandemic because of advancements in connected technology and automation of HVAC systems. It’s part of the new HVAC trends that are here to stay as we enter the new year. This Is what every HVAC business owner or anyone planning to join the industry must know.
Full Remote Potential
The HVAC industry has undergone various digital transformations over the years. Remote work was among some of the new uses for connected technology unmasked by the pandemic.
Technology that supports remote work has been implemented across various environments for several years. Work-from-home and social distancing requirements in 2020 were catalysts. The industry needs to begin acknowledging the full potential of this technology to support remote working.
In the post-pandemic period, everyone has been wondering whether the trend will likely stay. Remote working in the HVAC industry has various opportunities for everyone, including paying clients, companies maintaining facilities, technicians, and the environment.
Remote Work Solutions In The HVAC Industry
The development of new agnostic technology allows organizations with legacy equipment and HVAC infrastructure to benefit from remote working solutions. It allows for reaping the benefits of connected technology without disrupting their existing infrastructure or facing costly startup costs.
Work-from-home capabilities facilitate remote fixes with more accurate diagnostics and insights into the root cause. Engineers can achieve a first-time fix by arriving at the site with the appropriate tools, parts, and expertise to handle the issue.
These newly enabled efficiencies reduce return visits and increase average daily jobs. It also improves long-term health and equipment availability as part of commercial HVAC trends.
Benefit For Facilities Management HVAC Contractors
The number of people in any given environment is closely monitored and kept to a minimum today. Organizations benefit from reduced site visits and remote control of critical assets such as HVAC systems.
A boost in engineer efficiency comes with cost incentives for HVAC system owners and facilities managers. Diagnosing faults remotely is cost-effective for customers and more profitable for HVAC business owners.
Remote diagnostics being one of the popular HVAC marketing trends, is a win-win for customers, technicians, and facilities management companies.
Lowers Industry Carbon Footprint
Managing HVAC systems remotely, where technicians use advanced capabilities to diagnose and fix faults, encourages more accurate and efficient fixes. It presents an opportunity to lower the carbon footprint in the industry with few contractor trucks on the road for service visits.
Technically known as sophisticated digitalized write-back capabilities, remote fixes exist and are likely to grow in the new year. It reduces journeys to customer locations and encourages remote fixes as part of the trends in the HVAC industry.
Analyzing data from IoT sensors, as noted earlier, optimizes system health and performance remotely. Optimization and accurate diagnostics, and efficient fixes have significant environmental benefits.
The smooth running of machines leads to limited energy consumption to support more environmentally friendly HVAC services. It also significantly benefits the customer, the technician, and the environment.
Remote working is among the consequences of the pandemic that cut across various industries. The HVAC industry has realized various digital transformations, including the widespread use of connected technology and the evolution of digital insights.
Technology-enabled engineering in the HVAC industry is hard to ignore for its operational, environmental, and financial benefits. All this proves that remote HVAC solutions are here to stay in the new year and beyond.
Using Geothermal Heat Pumps
According to the EPA, geothermal heating and cooling reduce energy consumption and corresponding emissions by over 40% compared to an air source pump. Unlike a boiler or furnace, a geothermal heat pump produces heat from the ground.
How Efficient Are Geothermal Heat Pumps?
The good thing is that the pump works even in winter conditions. Seasonal changes are experienced above the ground, but the frost line isn’t affected at 50 degrees. A geothermal pump supplies four units of heat for every unit that powers it, which is about 400% efficiency.
This is because the pump doesn’t create heat but transfers it. About one-third or one-fourth of energy from using geothermal heat pumps is from consuming electricity. However, a furnace-rated 98% efficiency loses four power units and produces energy by burning a fuel source.
Benefits of Geothermal Heat Pumps
The pumps last about 20 to 25 years, unlike an AC unit that lasts 10 to 15 years or a furnace, which is likely to last about 15 to 20 years. Geothermal pumps last long since they are protected indoors from vandalism and inclement weather.
Additionally, the absence of fire within the pump eliminates flame-related wear and tear. Property owners qualify for a federal geothermal tax credit or other state and utility incentives that may be available.
Homeowners enjoy a significant drop in their heating fuel bill with a significant reduction in their monthly energy bill. The savings from switching to a geothermal heat pump is relative to energy prices. These increase as propane, natural gas, or heating oil prices go up.
Maintaining the pump requires changing the air filters every three to six months or more frequently where there’s the presence of pests or dust material. A basic inspection is necessary after every five years.
Digital Payment Methods
Any manager of an HVAC business must prepare for the unexpected. Leveraging HVAC contractor management software unlocks productivity and streamlines operations. Digital invoicing will scale your business growth and productivity. Paper invoices slow down HVAC techs and may come with inaccurate data.
Software such as Feld Complete comes with extra perks such as scheduling, dispatching, estimation, quotes, and customer management. This allows having everything you need to manage your HVAC business at your fingertips.
Other benefits of considering Field Complete include the following:
Efficient Job Management
Enjoy quick creation, editing, and scheduling of jobs from any device without any paperwork. You will always stay informed about jobs, statuses, assigned techs, and deadlines. The software allows for creating and changing orders, converting estimates into jobs, and setting priority statuses for all jobs.
Communication With Your Techs
The app allows staying in touch with your field service team on the go. They can receive alerts when you change orders and speed up job completion with fewer chances of miscommunication. A chatbot allows for resolving frequent issues faster and offering customer support 24/7.
Collection of Payments
Using Field Service allows collecting payments in the field after invoicing is done through the same app. It eliminates wasting time creating invoices in your office and forwarding them to clients, which lengthens the payment process.
Take Your HVAC Business To The Next Level
Understanding upcoming HVAC market trends is key to taking your HVAC business to the next level. Set your business apart by presenting it as environmentally friendly through strategies such as switching to digital invoicing using Field Complete.
It’s a win-win for you, the customer, and the environment because of more profits, low energy bills, and a lower carbon footprint.