January 11, 2013
East Longmeadow, Mass., January 2013 ---- hilmor™, manufacturer of one of the most extensively researched new lines of HVAC/R tools and equipment, is providing 2013 AHR attendees with a first look at tools that are being described by insiders as “game-changing.”
The full menu of hilmor products launching at AHR features 150 separate items across multiple categories. The new range of hilmor manifolds, gauges and electronics are easier to use with push-button simplicity and backlit dial faces. The new hand tools encompass everything from flaring tools to nut drivers, and hold more securely and ensure better alignment.
“This exciting product launch is backed by one of the largest HVAC/R research projects in the history of the industry,” says Rich Mathews, Senior Vice President, Marketing, hilmor. “We wanted to ensure our tools were the best in their class, so we started by identifying the challenges HVAC technicians faced in the field. We rode along with technicians, visited jobsites and talked with distributors. We traveled coast-to-coast, investing millions of dollars in the research behind this line of tools,” Mathews adds.
What the hilmor research confirmed, repeatedly, was a great lag in HVAC/R tool innovation. To address that lag, a team of design engineers set out to help move the HVAC/R tool market to the same level of sophistication and innovation already present in the HVAC/R industry. Based on the initial research, product concepts were tested and finessed, with the end result being a line of tools set to revolutionize the everyday work of technicians.
Mark Leichthammer, Director of Global Consumer Insights, hilmor, says the tools will increase technicians’ productivity by making it easier for them to do their jobs. With hilmor tools, technicians will no longer have to hold tools between their legs, use nickels as measuring devices and put flashlights in their mouths. “Technicians face a lot of challenges in the field – the environments they work in are demanding and physically challenging. The hilmor line of tools is specifically designed to help them be more effective and efficient,” Leichthammer says.
While the entire new line has been met with excitement by technicians participating in focus groups, there are six premier products set to give technicians the ability to retool and conquer the next job. They include:
Dual Readout Thermometer with Thermocouple Clamps – This thermometer is the only one in the industry that provides two digital readings to help simplify the calculation of superheat and subcool. It can be used with any manifold or as a stand-alone device.
Electronic Gauge with Vacuum Sensor – The industry’s first hybrid gauge offers both analog and digital displays for twice the confidence. Built-in features include pressure/temperature data for 39 refrigerants and color-coding so technicians know right away if they’re working with the correct refrigerant. Aluminum Manifold (4-Valve and 2-Valve) – Built to last, this manifold comes in two-and four-valve combinations and features a forged aluminum body and high-impact gauge boots. Other features include replaceable stainless steel valve seats and front-mounted hose positions.
Compact Bender – HVAC/R technicians work in tight spaces and need tools designed to access every nook and cranny. The Compact Bender fits where other tools can’t, allowing for tube-bending up to 90 degrees with ease. Additional features include a universal crossbar with color-coded mandrels, a quick-release button to free tubes without damage and a spring-loaded ratcheting lever.
Swage Tool – With the ability to be operated single-handedly, the hilmor Compact Swage Tool is ideal. Pistol-shaped, it can handle tight spaces, and with its hydraulic mechanism, it takes minimal effort to operate. The handle is spring-loaded to control pressure on swages from 5/16” all the way to 1-5/8”.
Quick-Engage Flare and Swage – A tool that can both flare and swage, this hilmor premiere tool also features a clothespin-like clamp to secure tubing, ball detents to easily align the yolk and a comfort grip. The flare height gauge makes using a nickel a thing of the past.