This week, we asked Tod to discuss any trending technology topics that are going on in the HVAC-R field at the moment. Read on to see what’s trending!
The HVAC-R field has been forever changed by technology
From thermostats that you can set and adjust instantly on your smartphone, to furnaces that heat your home in specified zones the industry is changing. Ultraviolet systems can eliminate bacteria in your home air, and air handlers can manage the amount of humidity in your home.
Technology, yup…we got that!
On my first day of class last fall, my instructor pulled out his smartphone and projected his app onto a TV monitor. The screen read: temperature 75 F, Humidity 41%. “Wow,” I thought, “Instant access to your home HVAC through your phone!” Nowadays, building managers can control every piece of their HVAC equipment from their phone or iPad without ever venturing onto a roof.
New construction has zoning system options for homes. These zone systems control each room through smart circuits, sensors and electronic dampers in the ductwork. Now, you can heat your living room when using it, and then shut it down to save energy as you turn up the bedroom temperature before you head off to sleep.
Motion sensors are being integrated to detect movement in individual rooms and turn on HVAC systems when people are detected in a room. It will also turn that same equipment off when it detects no movement in the room.
Variable refrigerant flow or VRF technology for short, allows the HVAC system to control multiple zones with specific heating and cooling operations. In fact, you can cool down (air condition) the kitchen, while you warm up (heat) the bedroom at the same time! This gives the homeowner complete control over every zone in the home.
Zone systems also reduce energy costs by only conditioning the zones required at the time instead of conditioning the entire home.
So, what’s around the corner?
Well, how about a Wi-Fi controlled board in your HVAC system that communicates directly to your local HVAC service company? When your system has an issue, the service company will call you and schedule an appointment to service your heating and cooling system, and will already know what needs to be repaired! With this advancement, there’s no wasted time diagnosing the issue, and they will have the correct part with them when they arrive!
Follow along with our students’ progress here.
Learn more about the Generation T movement here.