Kele Blog

Federal Funding Available for K-12 School Air Quality Projects: Part II

Part 2 of a 2-Part Series
Read Part 1 here

Do your customers know that they have a deadline to meet when it comes to spending the federal funding they’ve received regarding COVID-19? Well, the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act has funds available through September 30, 2023. This is your friendly reminder that such funding will come to an end in a little over a year, so now is the time to spend those funds on critical needs within schools.

Just how much funding is coming out of such acts? In the state of Tennessee alone, public schools will receive over $4.5 billion in federal funding through such relief acts as Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief and others. These funds can and will be used between spring 2020 and fall 2023. This funding is meant to support K-12 schools in various ways, from purchasing supplies to clean and sanitize facilities to facility repairs and maintenance that have to do with HVAC/BAS.

Here are two examples of acts that are ready to help and support schools—the American Rescue Plan (ARP) and the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER). Both have similar if not the same regulations and funding rules such as:

  • Available through September 30, 2023
  • Supports purchases made to clean and sanitize facilities
  • Supports repairs and improvements made to facilities that result in safer in-person instruction and reduce the risk of virus transmissions
  • Supports funding for repair, replacement, inspection, testing, maintenance, and upgrades that trend towards improvement in indoor air quality (IAQ) including but not limited to air purification, air filtering, ventilation systems, air sterilization, and fans

Now the ARP, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “…provides critical and unprecedented support to children, families, and communities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic downturn, which has been exacerbated by historic racial injustices. As one of the largest stimulus packages in U.S. history, ARP endowed ACF with $47.5 billion in supplemental funding to further our mission and meet the needs of the children, families, and communities we serve now, as well as build a strong foundation for the next generation.”

Similarly for the GEER, according to the Office of Elementary & Secondary Education, “Congress set aside approximately $3 billion of the $30.75 billion allotted to the Education Stabilization Fund through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act for the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER) Fund (in 2020). The Department awarded these grants ¬to States (Governor’s offices) based on a formula stipulated in the legislation: (1) 60% on the basis of the State’s relative population of individuals aged 5 through 24. (2) 40% on the basis of the State’s relative number of children counted under section 1124(c) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA).”

Don’t let your customer forget about the money already in their budget. These funds help make their life (and yours!) easier when it comes to allocating costs for projects.

Kele is here to help in any way that we can. From start to finish, we will help you maximize your customer’s funds to get you what you need for success on the job. Whether it’s a large project or a small break/fix, we’re here to help you get that win for your customer. Shop now on kele.com or call today —Kele’s got you covered.

Doing an interesting project or break/fix with these funds? Drop a line in the comment box below to tell us how your customers are spending their federal funding!

The HVAC/BAS world is getting smarter

As costs continue to skyrocket across the U.S., more and more industries are looking for ways to do business smarter. From trying to cut costs to the implementation of smart technologies, there is no corner of the business world that has been left undisturbed when it comes to this. Even the HVAC/BAS industry has been affected!

For the HVAC/BAS customer, they are wanting more control and insight when it comes to their systems, how their systems are affecting their buildings, and the people who are spending time in them. And in this day and age? That’s completely understandable. So how exactly is our industry changing to accommodate the current and coming trends?

Current trends coming in hot!

Here are a few things that the HVAC/BAS industry is beginning to invest in:

  • Software automation implementation
  • Better connectivity through data analysis to improve controls
  • Eco-friendly systems
  • Smarter automation technologies

What do the experts say?

According to Global Market Insights, “Smart HVAC Controls Market size was over USD 7 billion in 2017, growing at a CAGR of 19% from 2018 – 2024. The global shipments are expected to surpass 250 million units by 2024. Energy management initiatives by governments in light of environmental degradation are expected to propel the smart HVAC controls market growth. In several countries, regulations have been put in place to ensure that buildings have smart heating & cooling systems to improve their energy efficiency.”

Kele is committed to helping our customers (that’s you!) win no matter what. So if your customer is looking for a quick break/fix or a smart thermostat for better management and control in their building—Kele’s got you covered so that YOU can win with your customer.

Shop now on kele.com or call today!

Summer Project: Boiler Edition

Whew—temps and humidity have hit the U.S. hard these past two weeks. If you’re not feeling it—that means that your HVAC/BAS systems are working as intended! (Cue happy dance!)

If your customer is one of the “cool” ones, then it’s a great time to talk about starting the boiler install or retrofit they are due for.

Now, which boiler is best?

For an install, it all comes down to what type of building and need your customer has. Commercial boilers are some of the most diverse that are offered. Ideally, they work best in universities, schools, hospitals, office buildings, and more. They typically work off natural gas, propane, non-fueled electric, or light-oil which provides hot water/steam.

If your customer needs high efficiency, condensing boilers are where it’s at. These units have an efficiency of 98-99% and are fueled by oil or gas. Need quiet, compact, and clean? Then electric boilers are what they’re looking for. Other types to keep in mind are firetube boilers, watertube boilers, industrial watertube boilers, non-condensing boilers, or electrode types of boilers.

Retrofits can save the day!

If your customer can’t afford a new boiler or if their system just needs a fix or upgrade, a boiler retrofit is a perfect option. The number one goal in every retrofit scenario is to increase the overall efficiency of the system. These retrofits will give your customer energy savings and cost savings.

Whether your customer is going for a completely new system or a budget-friendly retrofit, Kele is here to help. Visit kele.com now or call today to get exactly what you need.

School Jobs Are Officially in Session

School projects have been bid on and jobs have officially been won. Now that school is over for the summer and buildings are empty, it’s time to get your projects started!

Wait…what do you mean your parts haven’t shown up yet????

The company you sourced from hasn’t given you a delivery date? I’m beginning to think that they didn’t actually end up getting those parts in.

It sounds to me like you didn’t source your parts with Kele. Oh, you didn’t? Interesting … let me tell you how we can help you turn this around!

With that start date on your school project inching closer and closer, you need parts now. We all know that the supply chain has been wreaking havoc on job schedules and it will continue to do so. That’s why Kele has worked tirelessly to provide over 3 million in-stock parts for you to choose from. The part you need is out-of-stock? No worries, we’ve got those hard-to-find direct alternatives in stock, so you’re covered no matter what.

We’ll also work with you to tailor your order specifically to you and your jobsite needs. We can get your order staged to ship when you want it or break it up into multiple shipments so that your jobsite isn’t overflowing with boxes. And we’re betting that you don’t want to sort through those boxes for hours looking for specific parts once they get to you. That’s why we’re more than happy to get your order tagged and therefore eliminate any and all confusion on what goes where.

Kele is here to help you with your project from start to finish and keep you covered on anything that happens in between. Call us today or visit kele.com now to make sure you’re prepared to go back to school. We’ll help you get the supplies you need to succeed!

Keep HVAC Systems Cool All Summer Long

It’s time to stay cool and leave hot temps behind

It’s official—hot weather is here ahead of schedule. Summer won’t truly start until the Solstice on June 21st, but the high temps we’re currently experiencing don’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon. According to The Farmers’ Almanac 2022 summer prediction, “…This summer weather will be remembered as a hot one nationwide. Only in New England and around the Great Lakes will the overall average temperatures tilt toward ‘seasonably warm,’ but that’s based on a wave of unseasonably cool air that arrives in September.” These summer conditions are the perfect storm for cooling systems to experience system issues or failures.

The worst thing that can possibly occur to your customer’s building in the summer months is a system or part failure that results in a lack of AC. It is necessary for every aspect of your customer’s HVAC and BAS systems to be in tip-top shape, so this doesn’t happen. (Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with a break/fix job for a cranky and hot customer!)

Common cooling system issues are typical byproducts of:

Out of all those common issues, let’s take a moment to take a deeper dive into chillers. A chiller’s main purpose is to move heat from one location to another so that it can cool/chill it. It is imperative that each mechanism of this system be in good working condition for the process to work as intended. The main components that go into the chilling process are:

If even one of these components malfunctions, the chilling system can be rendered useless or inoperable.

Don’t let your customers ignore warning signs of an overheated system(s). By doing regular maintenance work and having your customer monitor their systems, you’ll be able to catch small problems before they turn into system-ending ones.

Let Kele help you keep your customers cool all summer long. Shop now on kele.com or call today and take advantage of the coolest parts and prices around. Kele’s got you (and your customer) covered!

It’s time to stay cool and leave hot temps behind

It’s official—hot weather is here ahead of schedule. Summer won’t truly start until the Solstice on June 21st, but the high temps we’re currently experiencing don’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon. According to The Farmers’ Almanac 2022 summer prediction, “…This summer weather will be remembered as a hot one nationwide. Only in New England and around the Great Lakes will the overall average temperatures tilt toward ‘seasonably warm,’ but that’s based on a wave of unseasonably cool air that arrives in September.” These summer conditions are the perfect storm for cooling systems to experience system issues or failures.

The worst thing that can possibly occur to your customer’s building in the summer months is a system or part failure that results in a lack of AC. It is necessary for every aspect of your customer’s HVAC and BAS systems to be in tip-top shape, so this doesn’t happen. (Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with a break/fix job for a cranky and hot customer!)

Common cooling system issues are typical byproducts of:

Out of all those common issues, let’s take a moment to take a deeper dive into chillers. A chiller’s main purpose is to move heat from one location to another so that it can cool/chill it. It is imperative that each mechanism of this system be in good working condition for the process to work as intended. The main components that go into the chilling process are:

If even one of these components malfunctions, the chilling system can be rendered useless or inoperable.

Don’t let your customers ignore warning signs of an overheated system(s). By doing regular maintenance work and having your customer monitor their systems, you’ll be able to catch small problems before they turn into system-ending ones.

Let CCI help you keep your customers cool all summer long. Shop now on kele.com or call today and take advantage of the coolest parts and prices around. CCI’s got you (and your customer) covered!

Basic Maintenance to Beat the Summer Heat

Are your customers’ HVAC/BAS systems ready to beat the heat?

It’s that time of year again. Spring is hanging on for dear life but summer temperatures are ramping up. That means that those systems are about to be pushed to the limit.

Here are some basic maintenance reminders to ensure that high temps don’t do your customers’ systems and buildings in:

  • Make sure dampers are opening/closing correctly
  • Clean coils and drain/drip pans
  • Ensure ducts are clean and free from any obstructions
  • Make sure that all sides of the unit are clean and free from any debris that may have accumulated around it
  • Check occupancy levels and adjust thermostats as necessary to accommodate said levels
  • Ensure all vents are clear and clean
  • Check lines and wiring

Basic maintenance is a must! Don’t let your customers wait until their systems are in disrepair to have you work on them. Seasonal checks will be their best friend when it comes to basic maintenance. (And yours as well so you won’t be overwhelmed by the amount of work they want you to do in what will end up being a very small timeframe.)

Don’t let your customers’ systems get beat by the heat! Call us or shop with us on kele.com now to get all the parts you need to help keep your customers’ systems cool.

Highlights from Niagara Summit 2022

In case you missed it, CCI is here to give you an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at this year’s recent Niagara Summit. Built around the powerful forces driving the controls community, you’d be hard-pressed to find such an incredible mix of master systems integrators, building engineers, application developers, building owners, and facility managers anywhere else.

So what exactly did we encounter at the Niagara Summit 2022?

Our very own Michael Youngs, President and General Manager of CCI, led a panel on IAQ

Tenants and employees are returning to their commercial and industrial settings, and the next big question on everyone’s mind is how we approach indoor air quality (IAQ). Customers want to know if it’s safe to be back in buildings and what actions have been taken by the employer and/or building owner to ensure their safety.

Sick building syndrome (SBS) is a condition affecting workers and inhabitants of buildings alike. And it’s the last thing your customers want to deal with! At the end of the day, if you have poor IAQ, you’re going to have a sick building. IAQ index scores and dashboards are important to maintain your building(s) and ensure it and its occupants stay healthy.  There are many products targeted for healthy buildings such as IAQ monitors, UV disinfection systems, and negative pressure solutions.

What’s next? Building Management Systems are moving to the CLOUD

We all see it happening. Over the last decade, systems and parts have started the move to a secure, digital framework as technology advances. There are convenience and connectivity benefits that come with the Cloud. Being able to complete and access is one of those benefits. Another benefit of the Cloud is real-time data. This is a positive effect on maintaining healthy efficient buildings. With BACnet products and powerful dashboards like Niagara Reflow controls and BAS professionals everywhere are enhancing their workflow and maintenance.

Here comes NEW Products: Jace – 9000 and Niagara Edge 10.

The Niagara journey continues to evolve with each iteration of the Niagara Framework. As we progress to more digital-based services and products, the top priority becomes SECURITY.  We are excited to learn about the latest JACE model – JACE 9000 which has built-in secure, remote access, as well as the Niagara Edge 10 Field Controller.

The JACE – 9000 controller leverages all the features of Niagara 4 and up. It adds to the enhanced user experience, maximizing Niagara’s advantages in delivering HTML5 views, charting, and other aspects of data visualization, as well as its robust security and improved device management capabilities.

The Niagara Edge 10 is an IP-based field equipment controller powered by the Niagara Framework®. The Edge 10 drives applications such as zone temperature control, fan coil unit operation, single-stage air handling units, water-source heat pumps, and more.

The controller runs the full Niagara stack, with 10 points of on-board IO and remote expansion capability.

We can’t wait to add this to our product line stack! Want to be the first on the list to order? Contact us at 781-335-8353 or email us at info@controlconsultantsinc.com.

Behind the Scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on projects & break/fix

Play the Kele slot machine and win every time

Part Three of a multi-part series

We all know that Vegas is the capital of go big or go home. And these days, you need the same attitude to tackle your workload. Because lately? Trying to get everything you need for your upcoming HVAC/BAS job is the equivalent of putting on a show at the Bellagio or The Venetian.

You’re trying to stay on schedule, under budget, and all that jazz (all whilst keeping all the glitz and glam of HVAC/BAS alive). Add in some blinking neon lights to spotlight your stress levels and you’ve got a show that encompasses the issues everyone in the industry is currently facing. And after attending the 2022 ASHRAE Winter Conference and experiencing what we did, we know that everyone in the audience would be able to relate to your very realistic show.

Raw materials such as aluminum, copper, steel, and plastic are in short supply, creating a bottleneck within the industry from a manufacturing standpoint. Most suppliers can’t get you parts because they just haven’t been made yet. Or they’re missing the microchips needed to function (i.e. thermostats, furnaces, etc.,). Supply chain issues seem to be never-ending and it’s a problem that will persist throughout the rest of 2022 and into 2023.

The Wall Street Journal recently ran an article on how contractors and HVAC/BAS professionals alike are navigating the current economic climate while simultaneously inventing workarounds for suppliers who can no longer deliver on in-demand parts. And if that wasn’t enough of an issue, staffing and labor shortages are causing those projects and break/fix jobs to pile up even more. Everything seems to be working against you industry-wide; it’s as though every time you bet on red it turns up black. But Kele is committed to getting you back to winning every time you play.

We know that your workload continues to grow; cashing in your chips on a completed job is only getting harder. We’re working overtime (like an Elvis impersonator officiating elopements) to make sure that your “marriage” to your supplier, aka us, is the relationship of a lifetime. From keeping 3 million+ parts in stock to offering staging and tagging for your orders, we’re in it for the long run. We’re committed to getting you what you need, when you need it and being there for you every step of the way.

It’s been said that going to Vegas means saying goodbye to your money. Going to Kele though? It means saying goodbye to your project and break/fix problems and saying hello to the parts you need.

In case you missed the first two articles in our ASHRAE series, click the links below to catch up on what you missed. Get ready to hit the jackpot and win when you shop with Kele! Thanks for catching up with us about everything we experienced at the 2022 ASHRAE Winter Conference.

Part Two: Behind the scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on the supply chain

Part One: Behind the scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on the education

Behind the scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on the supply chain

Are you ready for a full house?

Part Two of a three-part series

 

Ladies and gentlemen, prepare to place your bets. On what you ask?

  1. On when you’ll be able to find the parts you need.
  2. On when they’ll be shipped to you.
  3. Or, on if you’ll ever actually see them after paying for them.

It almost feels like most of you are playing a game of roulette and hoping that you end up being lucky when it comes to sourcing parts these days. See, just like you never forget your first time in Vegas (or better yet your first ASHRAE conference), you don’t tend to forget when an industry partner fails to get you what you need. But what’s the holdup? The supply chain.

Talk of how to navigate the supply chain and its many issues was a hot topic at the 2022 ASHRAE Winter Conference this year. Overcoming it was an even hotter topic. It’s what’s captivating not only the industry but the world right now. A recent New York Times article predicted that the supply chain chaos is likely to persist through 2022 (and possibly beyond!).

But how exactly does an industry partner, like Kele, go about overcoming something that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon? We’re glad you asked!

It all comes down to two words: Stocking. Distributor. As supply chain problems persist, Kele has been striving to overcome them by building resiliency within the industry via our stocking position. We’ve grown from being a stocking distributor of 1.8 million in-stock parts to 3 million in-stock parts. And doubling our in-stock inventory was just the beginning. The hard-to-find parts that no one has? Our purchasing and product teams have been taking and placing bets to ensure that we’re stocking direct and functional alternatives. This way none of the parts you need have the chance to pull a Houdini.

And since we’ve been in the game forever, we decided to go back to basics. The whole reason Kele was founded, was to simplify the supply chain; getting you what you need, when you need it. Focusing on our roots led us to invest in infrastructure. The best way to safeguard against industry (and the world) disruptions was to get as close to our customers as possible. Now we’re not talking creepy security guy at a poker tournament close. More like strategically placing our distribution centers across the country so that 74% of the U.S. can get parts in two days or less close.

Instead of letting the chips just fall where they may, Kele is here to make sure you hit the jackpot time after time; whether it’s focusing on getting you what you need or helping you navigate the current inflationary environment we find ourselves in. Vegas is said to be a place for everyone. Kele knows we’re the HVAC/BAS equivalent to that. Who said that a jackpot doesn’t come in a Kele package? The best-kept secret in the business is that you and I both know it does.

Get ready to place more bets and stay tuned for more behind-the-scenes from the 2022 ASHRAE Winter Conference about break/fix and projects.

RELATED BLOGS:

Part One: Behind the scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on education

Part Three: Behind the scenes with Kele at ASHRAE: Focus on projects & break/fix

Finish getting ready for Back to School

It’s almost summer which means that school jobs are right around the corner. It’s time to get back to school ready and get project bids priced now. Break/fix jobs are bound to happen but you’re about to be inundated with retrofits and projects galore. Are you ready to get an A+ on each one?

To do just that you’ll want to stay up to date on state and federal guidelines for schools and universities as well as industry standards.  ASHRAE standard 62.1-1999 is the perfect example of standards you want to be up to date on. It recommends that each person in a classroom receive 15 cu. ft. per minute (cfm) of fresh air and a classroom with 30 people requires a ventilation rate of about 450 cfm.

Between zone requirements and the challenges that HVAC/BAS systems can present in a school and university setting, it almost feels like you’re being set up to fail on your assignment. Don’t wait till the last minute to get your bids in; planning for school projects and retrofits is about to be coming to an end. Hurry!

Plan ahead and let Kele help you stay on schedule and under budget so that you get that A+ on your final project.

Check out our other school bidding blogs here.