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Calling Eugene

   Hey Eugene hope all is well with you and your family. I respect you and your comments very highly.. You and John Williams Jr of the Carrier Co. are one of the very very few folks that I consider my equal n the ac industries. I might not be the best boss or businessman's in the world, but if nothing else i know air and ref flow!!!

   I have noticed that many of the so called techs are so less skilled and inexperienced than that of 20 years ago. What is really scary is that are trade is dwindling very rapidly. I recently gave an exam to a group of techs just to see what they knew. How to change out a 3 ton burnt out compressor, the procedures from start to end. It was scary the results over 85 % failed or even close to pass the simple 5 minute test.The average Joe blow doesn't know basic refrigeration.

   Most owners don't encourage reclaiming old ref much less own a recovery unit. Most techs out there don't carry a micron gauge, dry-nitrogen, or even a sling psychrcometor. 410a is a very very unfriendly blend and charging is so critical. I have read so many questions that have come in and just shake my head. They go buy a set of gauges and a EPA certification from a local parts house and bam their are in ac business ( lmao rotff smfp ).

   Then after 2 or maybe 3 years they decide that thy are a commercial expert technician. Now Eugene I got to share this one with you. A very close friend went out to check on a job, a local contractor did the working blaming the manufacturer company. The contractor mad now at my friend because he shows the contractor that the water piping was piped backwards. A very simple 50 ton water cooled chiller with a remote water tower. Now how stupid can you get. Back to simply charging, why is it so hard. If its in the cooling mode with a cap tube or fixed orifice use super heat dummies. Now it has a tx valve use sub cooling dummies. It does not matter if its 410a or r-22 or even 421a.

   Guys just wanting to help, and please take time to clean both coils and pull the blower wheel. Also if it is a furnace with a secondary heat-exchanger clean it to.



kicking back in kudzo corner, dont get me started on electrical or diys 

all comments welcomed just respects Dan's Wall


  • Eugene SilbersteinEugene Silberstein Member Posts: 349
    Back to Basics

    I have three things to say in response to your post, David. (1) We need to properly train our technicians. (2) We need to properly train our technicians. And, most importantly (3) We need to properly train our technicians.

    In our industry, many of our service personnel were trained in the trenches by others, who themselves, learned the industry from others in the field, and so on and so on and so on.

    The business of HVAC/R is changing at an alarming rate and we all need to keep up with the changes. This is not always easy to do.

    I can only hope that our technicians are getting educated and reading the directions when encountering unfamiliar or new equipment. Guessing is not an option.

    A very wise friend of mine gave me this little anecdote. A field technician encountered an unfamiliar system and need to replace a part on it, The new part came with installation instructions but, since the customer was standing over the technician, he opted to install the part, incorrectly, without referring to the paperwork. Pride and ego often get in the way of doing things the right way. There is absolutely nothing wrong with "reading the book". If a customer chimes in with a statement such as, "You need to look at the instructions?", the technician can easily respond by saying, "Would you rather I put the part in without reading them?". Another response could easily be, "The manufacturers are constantly updating their products and I want to make certain that I am following their recommendations to a tee".

    Since I train a lot of field technicians that have a number of years in the field, I have also encountered another interesting scenario. Some technicians are very reluctant to admit what they don't know. This can be a result of ego, but can also be a very different situation. Imagine a technician approaches his supervisor and asks about the operation of a thermostatic expansion valve. The response to the technician can make all the difference in the world. Here are a couple of possibilities:

    (1) Glad you asked John. The TXV is responsible for maintaining a constant evaporator superheat in the evaporator coil. The valve is controlled by three pressures; the bulb pressure, the spring pressure and the evaporator pressure. The thermal bulb...

    (2) What?! I'm paying you X-amount of money and you don't know that? Maybe I'm paying you too much!

    In my opinion, I would rather have a technician that is forthcoming, to the best of his/her ability, in identifying areas of uncertainty so that the technician can learn and become a better tech. This benefits both the technician and the company.

    For the most part, I have encountered technicians who are eager to learn and very enthusiastic about the trade. Although there are some who are not as experienced as we would like, I would like to think that the majority of those in our industry are getting trained, doing the right thing, and helping to show our industry in the best light.
  • TechmanTechman Member Posts: 2,144
    Morning Gents!

    I find that it comes down to "people". I can teach and show almost anyone how to properly clean a 7/8" wrot ell. What they hand me is something else. Some do good some do not. As a "people" ,I installed a multi position res AC airhandler, upside down.To this day ,I still convince myself that "going thru a divorce" had something to do with my stupid install. Many people simply don't want to work, let alone work hard.I have lots of literature onboard my truck ,and I proudly show that manual,I HAVE IT! .Not knowing is one thing, Not doing after knowing is a whole different matter.I think most professions have the same conditions, because people are people! As a boss I'm looking  for ANYONE who likes any kind of work, and who will gladly follow all of those "rules" in all of those books,manuals,binders, as they learn them. Just like I do!
  • earl burnermannearl burnermann Member Posts: 126
    Service quality and knowlege

    Hi David,

    I’m one of Eugene’s students and am in my last semester. Last week Eugene asked the class how many where working now, and it looked like just about the entire class had been hired by those they where interning with. So there aren’t a whole bunch of SCCC students looking for a job after school.

    One problem I came across was that some employers are using methods that would make you shiver. After my first semester, and very green, I was hired by one of the local companies. What was the ambient temperature? NYC temp minus ten degrees. How do you properly charge a system? By using default high and low pressures as per the company. Any concern about subcooling or superheat? What’s that?

    The first company I worked for just dumped refrigerant from units. When I asked them for a recovery machine to protect my EPA standing I was told they were working on it. They came to a solution the next week. I was laid off.

    Right now I’m working for an employer that has a senior refrigeration tech that uses a lot of old school techniques. The difference here is that when I voice my opinion and concerns they listen and take action.

    So the problems I see in my limited time working in HVAC are that there are just not enough qualified techs coming into the trade. My first AC class had well over twenty students but my last class has barely ten left. The second problem is that those not being properly trained in the theory of HVAC are being shown some terrible practices. The last problem is when someone tries to correct these practices they loose their value to their employer.
    If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy!
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