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Call for common diagnosis protocols

acca-logoUSA: A leading US association is urging hvacr equipment manufacturers to implement common communication protocols for equipment commissioning and fault diagnosis.

ACCA, serving more than 60,000 professionals and 4,000 businesses in the indoor environmental and energy services community, is urging manufacturers to engage in the development and implementation of universal communication protocols for equipment commissioning and on-going diagnosis for the purposes of ensuring that HVAC equipment is properly installed and maintained.

Initially, the association would like to see the development of a common set of error codes and a standardised access method for data collection.

According to the ACCA, this would improve diagnosis, enabling problems to be fixed the first time increasing productivity and reducing call-backs. It also sees opportunities to provide better service/maintenance contracts through improved communications and prognostics that identify potential failure points.

“Universal communication protocols for diagnostics are something that many industries are already utilising successfully, and it’s time that our industry gets on board,” said Paul T. Stalknecht, ACCA president and ceo. “I have been involved in this situation before when I worked for the American Trucking Association. There were objections and fear about moving to this type of plug and play system for diesel engines and truck maintenance. But once the productivity and efficiency benefits were made known to truck owners and mechanics, demand peaked and it was implemented and greatly improved the industry.

“I know there are a number of concerns in the HVAC industry about adopting these types of protocols, such as encouraging DIY customers, and manufacturers losing their ability to distinguish themselves from the competition through proprietary equipment design. However, we risk losing more if we sit back and do nothing, or worse, let another entity (perhaps the federal government) develop it and be forced to accept their protocols.”

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