2023 Dealer Design Awards: HVAC Residential Equipment
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2023 Dealer Design Awards: HVAC Residential Equipment

Jan 22, 2024

FLOW AND GO: Beckett Corp.’s BK221UL is used to automatically collect, move, and direct the flow of HVAC condensate when gravity drainage is not possible or practical. (Courtesy of Beckett Corp.)

The Gold award in the HVAC Residential Equipment category goes to Beckett Corp.’s Beckett BK221UL Condensate Pump.

The BK221UL is a medium condensate pump used primarily in HVAC applications. The pump is designed to automatically collect, move, and direct the flow of HVAC condensate when gravity drainage is not possible or practical.

The pump was designed to be easy to install. Features include a bull’s-eye level located on the pump’s lid, which serves as a visual mounting reference; stainless steel mounting tabs with a versatile multi-slot design for maximum mounting flexibility; and a snap-off lid assembly that can be quickly rotated 180° to relocate the pump’s discharge check valve from one side to the other.

These features help contractors minimize installation and test times while avoiding unprofitable callbacks.

“Time is money for all HVAC contractors, and callbacks hurt profitability,” said Sean Kubal, HVAC national sales manager, Beckett Corp. “The BK221UL pump gives contractors confidence by using a proven and reliable product for years of trouble-free operation. Beckett condensate pumps are based on decades of HVAC industry experience and are designed for easy installation, years of reliable and quiet operation, and easy/quick maintenance.”

The pump also offers features designed to make maintenance quick and easy, such as an external lift-to-test tab that allows techs to check pump operation without removing the motor cover or adding water and quickly empty the reservoir for servicing. A quarter-turn, ⅜-inch check valve, requiring no tools to remove, allows techs to check for debris and re-install.

The unit operates quietly, thanks to an improved design on the motor cooling fan and vents, an improved pump impeller design, and vibration-absorbing rubber feet on the reservoir tank.

George Soto, lead technician, Precision Refrigeration, said the BK221UL is his go-to choice anytime gravity cannot be relied upon to do the job.

“I’ve used them on typical HVAC systems, condensing furnaces and boilers, and even in a few refrigeration applications,” said Soto. “These units saved me time — which is money — with the bull’s-eye level, multi-slotted mounting tabs, ¼-inch twist lock, and ⅜-inch check valve. These features make for a much faster and accurate installation.

“I would recommend the BK221UL to my colleagues and customers as either an upgrade from existing or on new installations, especially when the pump is visible, sound might be an issue, or I just want something that will work right for a very long time,” continued Soto. “I’ve used them for a lot of oddball things, and they always get the job done.”

HOT AND COLD: Allied Air Enterprises’ 4HP17L Concord is a single-stage heat pump designed for residential cooling and heating applications requiring 1.5- to 5-ton capacities. (Courtesy of Allied Air Enterprises)

Allied Air Enterprises’ Concord earned the Silver award in the HVAC Residential Equipment category. The 4HP17L Concord is a single-stage heat pump designed for residential cooling and heating applications requiring 1.5- to 5-ton capacities. Although designed for residential applications, it’s versatile enough to also be compatible with commercial, single-phase applications.

Allied Air Enterprises’ approach was simple: reduce as much complexity as possible for its customers.

“The new entry-level heat pump is based on Concord’s existing single-stage heat pump platform, where the focus is on providing installation ease and a reliable product that won’t have callbacks,” said Cameron Prince, senior manager, product marketing, Allied Air Enterprises. “We started with a proven platform and ensured we kept design elements the field loves, like corner-mounted line set connections with plenty of clearance to help make brazing and charging easier.”

The Concord delivers Air-Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) system matches with the company’s existing line of indoor coils, furnaces, and air handlers and offers a formidable option for those pursuing electrification solutions.

“This product has simplified a complex transition to higher efficiency products under new testing standards by utilizing our existing indoor equipment and cutting the number of models being phased out by the 2023 regulations by more than half,” said Prince. “This has allowed both distributors and dealers to have an easier time stocking the right equipment and allows people to focus on running their businesses rather than gaps in their inventory and unavailable AHRI system matches.”

The unit was created with simplicity in mind and requires no special steps during setup or installation.

Features include Quiet Shift technology, which reduces operating sounds when the unit goes into defrost mode to remove frost and ice buildup, ensuring better performance with minimal noise and less maintenance. A corner-mounted lineset provides ample clearance for easy access. The 4HP17L uses mechanical high- and low-pressure connections to allow for easy replacement without having to pump down the system and recharge. Additionally, all Concord models come with the Omniguard all-aluminum tube and fin coil design while maintaining brass-to-copper lineset connections.

Moving toward 2025 and the transition to lower-GWP refrigerants, Allied Air Enterprises intends to continue to use the current heat pump platform and is already well into formal product development projects.

“Years of testing have been conducted on various refrigerant types, and we’re confident this proven platform is a good fit for new refrigerants and will continue to provide consistency and familiarity with dealers and their technicians — allowing them to spend more of their time adjusting to working with new refrigerants on a day-to-day basis,” said Prince.

One DDA judge said the unit pairs well with recently introduced tax credits.

“Having a heat pump that qualifies for the single-stage tax credit is a nice touch,” said the judge. “This allows customers to receive the incentive without having to purchase a more expensive, dual-stage model.”