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Weil-McLain’s AquaBalance wall-mount line of combination and heat-only boilers now have an energy-saving AFUE rating of 95% on the Series 2 version. The combi units feature advanced condensing technology to deliver efficient space heat and hot water in a compact design. AquaBalance Series 2 boilers received the 2018 Energy Star Most Efficient designation. These boilers are ideal for retrofits or new construction in single-family homes, apartments, or condos, per the company.
2. Johnson Controls
Johnson Controls released the YORK Affinity Series YZT Two-stage Heat Pump. Homeowners can save up to 47% on energy use due to the unit’s 19 SEER, 10.0 HSPF efficiency. When installed with the Alexa-compatible, Wi-Fi-enabled Affinity Hx3 smart thermostat, even more efficiency can be attained. The warranty-backed units meet AHRI Standard 210/240 and 340/360 at AHRI conditions and relevant ASHRAE 90.1; and Energy Star and EPAct 2005 standards.
The new MLZ Series One-Way Ceiling Cassette from Mitsubishi offers adjustable airflow and fits between standard 16-inch joists. It can be easily installed in existing homes and new construction projects.
The MLZ is effective regardless of ceiling height due to its adjustable airflow, and its auto-vane control can adjust air direction. Servicing can be done from directly below the unit without requiring an access panel, so remodelers don’t
need to modify the surfacing area.
4. Geberit North America
Geberit North America announced its newest Cast Iron Waste Fitting option for its line of in-wall systems. Model 367.072.18.1 aims to make it easier and faster to install the company’s in-wall systems for multiple water-closet configurations. It can be used in above-the-floor or through-the-floor waste installations. This 90-degree elbow has a 2” NPTF heel outlet for venting, and 3” inlet and 3” outlet with universal connections.
5. Noon Home
Noon Home’s modular smart switch brings a number of firsts to the product type. One is bulb detection: The system can identify virtually any residential bulb and can discern between dimmable and non-dimmable. For those that are dimmable, the system automatically downloads and applies the right dim curve, according to a company rep. The curves control voltage to account both for light output and how the human eye percieves light, so the dimming effect is smoother. The switch interfaces with most existing systems, including Amazon Alexa and Google Home—which adds the benefit of voice control. It is housed in a dimming base, from which it’s easily removed and put into another, making it easier to upgrade the hardware.
The Flo water monitoring and shut-off system debuted in January, bringing water monitoring into the smart-home-tech mix. It consists of one 6-inch-long, WiFi-enabled device, installed on the home’s main water line to measure the pressure, flow, and temperature of the home’s water in real time. Any problematic changes are reported to the homeowner via text, phone call, or email. The homeowner can then choose a course of action, including shutting off the water entirely, with the tap of a button. If a catastrophic situation is detected and the homeowner cannot be reached, Flo will automatically shut off the water. Flo can detect water leaks as small as one drop per minute, according to the company, allowing for repairs to take place before the problem worsens.
7. Hubbell TayMac
Hubbell TayMac announced its new outdoor recessed wall outlet enclosure. The Extra Duty–rated MR 420 is a space saver, featuring a flat profile for use in wet locations; the ability to mount horizontally (shown) or vertically; and compatibility with duplex, GFCI, or round receptacles. It measures 4.56-by-6.15-by-4.98-inch (W x H x D) and works for all common siding types such as brick/block, wood, vinyl, and stucco.
8. Overhead Door
Overhead Door released the Legacy door, its answer to customer desire for smart tech is every aspect of the home. Users can set rules for the door (e.g. “If the garage door is open past midnight, shut it.”) and can control the door and check whether its open or closed via either the door’s smart opener or a smartphone. Owners can also assign user access to 19 individuals (20, including themselves); and, in a pinch, assign virtual keys to friends, family, neighbors, or whoever may need immediate access. A tracking feature allows monitoring of how often the door is opened and closed, and when. Setup takes about 10 minutes, with the app walking installers through the process.
The WhisperFit EZ ceiling mount fan from Panasonic features a built-in Pick-A-Flow speed selector, allowing homeowners to select required airflow (80 or 110 CFM). Ideal for residential remodeling, hotel new construction, or renovation, the quiet and energy-efficient fan is easily installed with the Flex-Z Fast installation bracket and detachable installation adapter, according to the company. Its low profile 5-5/8" housing depth fits 2x6 construction, and the fan can be used to bring a project up to the latest codes and standards.
10. SharkBite Plumbing Solutions
The new EvoPEX Plumbing System from SharkBite Plumbing Solutions is a total end-to-end solution for rough-plumbing a home and includes outlet boxes, valves, and other accessories. It uses proven push-to-connect fitting technology but with a new twist: the EvoPEX fittings include a visual indicator to confirm a proper connection. The ease of making connections makes the system ideal for working in tight spaces on remodel or re-pipe jobs.
11. Madison Electric Products
The Smart Box Shark Tooth is an electrical fixture box from Madison Electric Products that solves two common problems at once: maintaining alignment and getting the perfect fit. Most boxes will come with a template, according to a company rep, and you have to find a centerpoint and finagle the template to try and keep it centered. But the Shark Tooth itself is a drill bit/hole saw, and so maintaining the centerpoint alignment is as easy drilling a hole in the wall. Because it’s its own saw, as it’s making the hole, the box is being installed. The box supports fixtures up to 6 lbs., and the company rep says that it’s particularly suited to fire alarms, smoke detectors, wall sconces, and other things of similar size.