The Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning industry is gearing toward an upgrade when it comes to finding the right contractors to handle HVAC installations and repairs and to some, this change is long overdue.
Alex Rangel of Ravti recently demonstrated the need for this change when he addressed the admins at TechCrunch. He produced a pile of small, crumpled bits of yellow paper festooned with illegible scrawl and told everyone within earshot that those papers represented what the HVAC industry looks like even in the year 2014.
Even with the advent of technological advancements that could streamline the process of HVAC work from work orders to invoicing to inventory control – some decades old or more – that pile of crumpled papers spoke volumes about how far behind the times the industry really is.
Ravti hopes to change all that.
Alex Rangel and Chris Ginter (Ravti co-founder) believe that they can bring to market a way to make managing heating, ventilation and air conditioning units easier on property managers and owners by simply marking HVAC equipment with digital tags. These tags will allow property owners to manage every unit in their building(s) and call their preferred equipment vendors whenever the units need repairs without the need to remember an endless list of confusing unit codes.
The company has thus far tagged equipment in real estate covering a cumulative 30 million square feet and are adding to that number daily.
Ravti can be compared to Web solutions like Kayak or Expedia. Just like people can use these sites to find the best deals on travel, building owners and managers will be able to utilize Ravti to find good deals on HVAC system repairs through qualified and licensed contract professionals.
Ravti begins by taking photos of every unit. It then tags each unit with a unique digital bar code. Managers and owners can then select specific units and contact and dispatch their preferred repair vendors with a single click. Their HVAC units’ digital inventory is stored in a secure cloud-based data environment.
Getting this done is no small task. Maintenance costs average 32% of an average facilities operations budget. According to Rangel, Ravti will be able to save property owners from 18 to 40 percent on HVAC unit replacement because units can be purchased in bulk and acquired direct from equipment vendors without having to pay steep retail markups.
Ravti tags don’t only catalog units, they also give each one a score that reflects the property’s condition. Phase 2 of Ravti is set to include information about the condition of every machine in an effort to make each one more energy efficient. Ravti is United States Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED certified already and is making great strides toward maximizing energy efficiency in HVAC units.
Over the coming months, HVAC contractors and property owners should be keeping a close eye on Ravti and the progress being made. Rangel and Ginter have a long-standing personal relationship and they work well as a team.