Spring 2019 Supply Chain Newsletter
A look at current and upcoming promotions, research findings, market intel and program news.
NEW RESOURCE: TRAINING CENTER DATABASE

We've compiled a search tool for hands-on ductless heat pump training centers   in the  Northwest to help you quickly find trainings of interest and that align with the manufacturers whose products you install.
 
Of note: A new Johnstone Supply-Sadler training center has recently opened in Lacey, WA. See the location on the new training centers page »
PROACTIVE SALES STRATEGIES

We are offering a training seminar for contractors titled Proven Sales & Marketing Strategies for Ductless Heat Pumps. Selling a new technology requires different lead generation techniques and in-home sales skills. While the sales tactics taught in this seminar focus on ductless heat pumps, all heat pump sales can benefit from these skills.

The seminar is offered through several HVAC distributors across the Northwest. View times and locations at GoingDuctless.com/Partners/Training-Events .
MARKET RESEARCH AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Late in 2018, we released the 7th Market Progress Evaluation Report (MPER) - download it here. Here are some high-level takeaways, along with our recommendations:
  • In homes where a displacement ductless heat pump is installed, almost 1/3 of homeowners do not currently use their newly installed ductless systems as their primary heating source.

    Recommendation: Help homeowners configure their system's controls and backup heat settings. Help them understand the benefits of using their ductless heat pump as their primary heat to maintain comfort, save energy, and lower electric bills.
  • Over half of surveyed Northwest consumers who did not purchase a ductless heat pump after an initial bid cited price as a reason for not following through.

    Recommendation: Go beyond the price tag. Consider offering good-better-best options with corresponding benefits, features, and prices.Use the kitchen table conversation as an opportunity to discuss the value proposition associated with each package.
  • Word-of-mouth continues to be the most common way homeowners learn about ductless heat pumps, and their number one reason for making the recommendation is energy/electric bill savings.

    Recommendation: Sell the combination of comfort and energy savings.Make sure your proposal reflects the most efficient opportunities, optimal savings, and ability to deliver comfort by focusing on:
    • Sizing the system properly so it handles 45%-70% of the home's heating load. Oversizing or undersizing can reduce homeowner savings, comfort and system lifespan.
    • Helping the homeowner understand efficient system operations and how to perform regular maintenance
Manufacturers and distributors: Please reach out to your Northwest Ductless Heat Pump Project contacts to learn how we can help you engage with your dealers/installers to bring this content to life.
PROMOTIONS

Our promotions page is updated regularly, and right now you'll find promotions from Fujitsu, Daikin, and Mitsubishi.

Take advantage while these last and check back regularly for new listings!
IT'S TIME TO CHECK IN WITH YOUR
CUSTOMERS

Spring is a great opportunity to reach out to past customers and help them prepare for the shoulder season by reminding them to perform routine maintenance on their ductless heat pumps. Suggestions include:
  • Cleaning the filter after the heating season
  • Checking the condensate line for staining around joints or black buildup at the end, possibly indicating leaks or blockage
  • A reminder to change the operation mode from HEAT to COOL when the temperatures climb. Remind them not to use AUTO mode during the shoulder seasons, as it doesn't provide efficient or comfortable results in the Northwest
  • For installs more than three years old, offer a maintenance/equipment health inspection (or contract)
  • Checking for debris, clearance, and animal interference with outdoor compressors and line sets (particularly looking for line set insulation damage)
 
Here's a list of user tips you can share with your customers.

DO YOU HAVE A QUALITY ASSURANCE CHECKLIST?

Quality assurance (QA) issues can result in installations failing to qualify for utility incentives, not meeting local codes, or reducing the longevity and performance of the installations.
 
Our utility partners have shared with us with some prevalent QA issues - be sure these are on your installation checklist to save time and money by passing inspections the first time:
  • Always pull necessary permits. Be aware of special requirements in jurisdictions that address seismic concerns or electrical codes
  • Complete and correct paperwork. Paperwork is still one of the most frequent QA issues for utilities. Get signatures from homeowners and provide the installer signature wherever it's required
  • Tidy up. Spray foam around line set penetrations in walls should not be visible. For both appearances and protection from degradation due to sunlight and moisture, these penetrations should be sealed and then covered with a weather protection, such as line set hide or UV tape/sealant
Each of these items is covered in our online courses , including our Installer Orientation course and our Master Installer Designation course.
MASTER INSTALLER NETWORK

Congratulations to Anctil Heating & Cooling of Portland, OR, for their recent achievement of becoming a Master Installer! Anctil has been a participating installer since 2008 and their team works with PGE and Pacific Power and as an Energy Trust Trade Ally to assist customers in getting the most from available utility rebates.  
 
Master Installers can use our Master Installer logo in their marketing and on their website, plus they are listed as a Master Installer on our website. Master Installers also have access to our marketing images and ready-to-use digital and print advertising. Learn more about our certification program »
 
Reminder: It is Master Installer certification renewal season. Check your email for the invitation to log on to our new online system where you can update your credentials. If you haven't received the email, reach out to us at info@goingductless.com or 503-467-2159 and we'll be happy to assist you.
ARE YOU PTCS CERTIFIED?

Performance Tested Comfort Systems (PTCS) is a certification program for residential ducted heat pumps and duct systems sponsored by the Bonneville Power Administration. PTCS-certified technicians are trained to install heat pumps that operate to their highest level of performance or to confirm that air is efficiently delivered through duct systems.
 
Learn more about PTCS training at their website , and ch eck with your local utility to see if it participates in the regionwide PTCS program offering financial incentives.
The NW Ductless Heat Pump Project is an initiative of the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA). NEEA is an alliance of more than 140 Northwest utilities and energy efficiency organizations working to accelerate the innovation and adoption of energy-efficient products, services and  practices  in the Northwest.