Fieldpiece Man

Personally, I have always been a Fieldpiece man.

Fieldpiece SC660

Since my youth, many years ago, I have used Fieldpiece multi-meters on service calls. The most important question - Is Bovada legal in us? Originally it was the SC76, then the SC56, and finally the SC57. In total, not counting the Fieldpiece SC660 I have owned 4 Fieldpiece meters (2 SC76s). The bottom line is I trust them. When Fieldpiece agreed to partner with WJR I was extremely excited and could not wait to get started. I received the entire Fieldpiece Joblink platform from Fieldpiece a week ago and have been slowly been getting acquainted with the new products.

The Fieldpiece SC660

One of the products I received from Fieldpiece was the new SC660 clamp multi-meter. This meter is compatible with the wireless transmitters I currently own, as well as the Joblink platform. In fact, technicians can send info to the SC660 from another 660, the SC57, the wireless transmitters, and more! This is a tremendous asset because it allows technicians to design a wireless network of tools that serves their purpose. For example, a refrigeration technician could use the wireless handle with an ASX14 super-heat accessory head to broadcast pressure and temperature from an evaporator out to the Fieldpiece SC660 at the condenser. The

ASX14

combinations are endless. Also, the meter has several functions that have never been part of my previous meters. The SC660 has dual k type temperature ports, a three phase rotation test, and a back lit selector dial. I have never had such a feature rich and versatile meter in my career of 22 years.

Whats Next?

The Joblink platform is made of much more than the Fieldpiece SC660. In my package from Fieldpiece there is also the SDP2, the SMAN 460, and the Joblink JL2. So, as any technician can see, there is so much more fun to be had. Make sure to tune into Working Joe’s Roundtable on YouTube tomorrow at 8am to see the new Fieldpiece SC660 first look video. Also, for more information and testing videos, subscribe to Town & Country Air Pro as well!

Town & Country Air Pro videos (requires paid subscription)

 

 

 

Electric Furnace Troubleshooting | Relays

Troubleshooting the Relays

Electric furnaces are intimidating to some technicians. I have seen so many over the years I have grown quite fond of working on them. In fact, my brother refers customers that have them to me. Now, they do have there down sides. The cabinets are close to the ground and usually the family dog lays right in front of them. They are often modified in dangerous ways by those who don’t quite know what they are doing. The last issue in particular is why good techs are needed to sort out the issues with these old furnaces. Yep, old. Often times they are in rental properties where the landlords keep the equipment going longer than your average homeowner. This video offers a little advise to techs about the proper relays to use on electric furnaces.

Fieldpiece Wireless Test | SC57 & ET2W

Off the Wire

My everyday service tool bag has been home to a Fieldpiece meter for the last 15 years. Originally it was the SC76. Nowadays, it is the SC57. The SC57 is a wireless clamp meter that will work with Fieldpiece’s original wireless lineup. This lineup is not affiliated with the new Joblink platform, but is still very useful.  This group of tools include the SC57, ET2W wireless transmitter, EH4W wireless handle, and the LT17AW bench meter. I like these tools because they can be used to build the kit that is perfect for the individual technician. My set includes 2 wireless transmitters, my SC57 and a number of accessory heads. The new SC660 will be compatible with these handles as well as the Joblink platform. I will be testing  the SC660 in the upcoming weeks.

The Fieldpiece Wireless  Test (Open Air)

Recently, I used the large field next to my home in NC to perform a Fieldpiece wireless test. This was an open air test that did not include any obstructions. Upcoming tests will include obstructions that will replicate real world service call conditions. I am pleased to say that the tool performed very well. In fact, it exceeded my expectations by remaining connected more than 2x farther than my hypothesis. The entire process was documented on the Town & Country Air Pro channel on YouTube.

iConnect Winner Announced!

The iConnect Goes to…….

When I started the iConnect giveaway a week ago I hoped a truly deserving party would win the tool. Because the nominations could have been made for any person it was a gamble. The winner could have been a person I hardly knew. But, at least one thing was certain. It was going to be an interesting night. The iConnect giveaway aired last night on the weekly Working Joe’s live stream. Each Wednesday night at 10 PM EST there is a live broadcast of some type on the WJR YouTube channel. Last night was particularly exiting because of the stakes.

The iConnect Winner is……

I am happy to say that Dave from Nor Cal HVAC/R was the iConnect winner. I have enjoyed Dave’s videos for the last couple years on YouTube. He always seems to be working on something unconventional. He does refrigeration and HVAC so there is a great variety of content on his channel. I know that he will give us, as viewers, a look at some of the more atypical iManifold applications.

Nor Cal on YouTube

Dave runs a great YouTube  channel as I previously stated. Viewers can see a wide variety of subject matter and will undoubtedly gain from his experience just by watching. I have often watched and thought to myself ,”Now this is a tech”. There could not of been a better winner for the iConnect gauge set. I am honored to be able to give it to him.

Catch Nor Cal on YouTube by clicking HERE

 

Fed Ex Scam

Email Scam

Over the last several days I have received several emails from Fed Ex concerning packages that were to delivered to my home. Although I do get packages at my home on a regular basis, there was something odd about these emails. I noticed that the email addresses were not from the Fed Ex domain. The domains were random and different with each email. I am glad that I noticed before I clicked on the attachment at the bottom! After searching online and found that this Fed Ex scam was widespread.  I put together a short BLOG video to warn our HVAC friends about the issue.

 

Electric Furnace Troubleshooting | Common Issues

The Heat is On

Electric furnaces have good points and bad points. The cost of running electric resistance heat is high. It is one of the least efficient methods for heating your home. The good points are that the machine itself is easy to install and the service is less costly than other types of heating systems. There is no one part in an electric furnace that is so costly that it would break the bank like a heat pump compressor or gas furnace heat exchanger. Because they are so easily and cheaply repaired they are kept in operation for long periods of time. This leads to failures that are very common. The most common failure I find is overheated electrical terminals. This can be due to loose wiring or failing components. Here is a short electric furnace troubleshooting video detailing a couple of these common failures.

iConnect Giveaway | WJR

iConnect Giveaway Begins

The time has finally come to get rid of my iConnect. I hope a deserving party ends up with this fine tool. I think that the HVAC community will make sure that it happens that way! Tune into the live broadcast below to see how to participate. The iConnect giveaway begins 12/7/16!

iConnect Giveaway | The Big One is Coming

iConnect Giveaway

Working Joe’s Roundtable on YouTube recently insinuated that they would be doing an iConnect giveaway. This is going to happen in the next few days. The  hard decision was not what to give away, but rather how to do it. Luckily, using the spirit of Christmas, we have come up with the perfect way to accomplish this task. That method will be revealed in the weekly live stream on Wednesday night at 10 PM. A link to the video will be shown at the bottom of this page. Also, I will delve into more about the future of the iConnect.

Why Get Rid of the iConnect?

The iConnect is a hub for a tremendous amount of HVAC data. Over the last couple years I have used it to commission new systems and on service calls. I can confidently say that I have a great deal of experience with the tool. People who watch Working Joe’s Roundtable and Town & Country Air Pro will know that I encourage technicians to study the foundations of HVAC before investing in expensive system analyzers. Furthermore, in the course of my experience with this tool I learned that almost all of the time I did not require the tool to accomplish my tasks. Most times my experience alone with some basic tools were plenty to get the job done. I enjoy doing calculations and can do them easily. The information I need is typically locked in my brain, just like it is for most of you reading this article.

$1700.00 Paper Weight?

Poll I set up on Google Plus a couple years ago. Question was “Why have you not bought an iConnect or iManifold?”

The conclusion of this post is not that the iConnect is useless. It is a wonderful tool. Most technicians do not share my affinity for doing calculations on the fly. Also, many technicians have more mission critical jobs that may be perfect for the iConnect. Data centers, commercial systems and any other jobs where reporting is needed would suit the iConnect well. I have small ambitions; I love working on small neighborhood HVAC systems. My life is simple and does not require a bunch of NASA caliber equipment.  But, I do not want my iConnect to go to waste. Stay tuned on Wednesday to try your hand at bringing it home! The iConnect giveaway will be our best one yet.

 

The Fate of the iManifold

End of an Era

The iManifold is a great tool. I have preached many times that a tech must be equipped with a strong foundation in HVAC. But, after achieving that experience, the iManifold can be a powerful ally on everyday service calls. Jim Bergmann IS the heart and soul of the iManifold. He IS the face of the iManifold brand and it’s biggest fan. It was HIS voice that always answered, when I asked questions about the tool. He even thought enough of me to send me a free iConnect set, intended to convince  me that it is a must have for any tech. This was after I had traded my original iConnect for a Testo 570, because I was not convinced. But, Jim believed in his product to no end. Unfortunately, Jim and his team were relieved of duty recently. No mention has been made of the reasons behind North Park Innovations, head brass’ decision.

What Happens Now?

Without Bergmann at the helm of iManifold, one thing is certain. The biggest fan of the tool has left the building. The passion that was so evident will be more than likely replaced with a generic commitment to the product. Bergmann will no doubt create the magic elsewhere. Until that time is here, the main question is: “What becomes of the iManifold?” For the last several months, I had been using it off and on, due to Bergmann’s good graces. In fact, I will admit I tried to force myself to use it as much as possible, because I was so grateful to Jim for his faith and goodwill. But, for me, like so many others that factor is gone. The reasons are a little different for each of us. I wanted to give it a chance. Other techs use the tool knowing that Jim would be there if something went wrong. They knew that the product would always push forward as long as he was at the wheel. That feeling left a few days ago. Many of the techs online have been indicating they no longer plan to purchase the tool because of this. While this may be a small sliver of possible sales, the web has shown us that new ideas and tools can die quickly if the online tides change.

A New Day

Over the next few days I will be unveiling a number of things on workingjoesroundtable.com. I don’t want to give away the plan but it will be worth subscribing to the  Working Joe’s YouTube channels. There will be at least 2 more big announcements so stick around and get ready. The show is about to start.

The YouTube Channels

Working Joe’s Roundtable

Working Joe’s BLOG (The Live Channel)

The Pro Channel (Town & Country Air Pro)

Written by Zack Psioda with Stan Akridge

 Load Calculation 3

Over the last several months Town & Country Air Pro has been touching on the subject of load calculation. HVAC load calculation is the process of determining what size heating and/or cooling system is needed to condition a particular structure. This week that series will continue with a look at the layout process. Layout for load calculation is important because it is referenced repeatedly while performing the calculation. I use a sheet of graph paper to layout a structure. Using graph paper allows  me to make sketches to scale, but also gives me room for adding notes.  A good foundation is imperative when accurate results are required.

How do I watch?

The load calculation and many other HVAC training videos are available on the Town & Country Air Pro channel on YouTube. This is a paid subscription that will offer you access to training materials,

group hangouts and many HVAC related videos. There are a few things you need to know before you subscribe. Firstly, the channel subscription must be made with your primary Google account (if you have more than one). Secondly, it will require a form of payment to

Town & Country Air Pro

be input, so have that card ready. As always, you can ask questions about the Pro channel or any other subject via email (zack@workingjoesroundtable.com) or in the group chat on the right of the page. Many of the participants in the group chat are Pro channel subscribers.

Upcoming events

There are events such as live streams and hangouts that will be taking place from time to time that may be of interest. Upcoming live streams and hangouts can be found in the HVAC video library on the main menu above. This listing also includes events from other channel producers as well. Of course, if you have knowledge of any events or channels that you don’t see in the HVAC video library, please send an email to: zack@workingjoesroundtable.com.

Links

Town & Country Air Pro

 

 

HVAC Pro Community