The Internet is changing the way many of us live, work and gather information. And if you needed more proof, the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recently announced that notices of public review standards drafts will appear exclusively on-line and not in the ASHRAE Journal.

"We believe this will move the public review process along faster and allow more opportunity for public comment," said George Jackins, chairman of the ASHRAE committee that recommended the changes. Public review notices of ASHRAE standards and guidelines will appear two times a month at pubrevdft.htm.

ASHRAE is also implementing a system that will allow comments on standards drafts to be posted electronically and is considering reducing the public review periods from 60 to 45 days. Many of the changes were first proposed at the group's 2000 annual meeting in Minneapolis last June.

"Our goal is to streamline our standards process as much as possible while also making it easier for members and others in the industry to comment on our proposed standards," Jackins said. "We feel that with these changes we can accomplish both and continue to meet American National Standards Institute requirements."

More on e-commerce:

  • The latest editions of the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI) Unitary and Applied Directories are now available on-line ( as well as in print and on CD-ROM. The ARI directories are used by manufacturers, wholesalers, contractors, architects, engineers and others to find specifications and product performance ratings. The Unitary Directory contains information on air conditioners, air source heat pumps and sound-rated outdoor unitary equipment. The Applied Directory gives performance ratings for 13 products, including air cooling and heating coils, centrifugal and rotary screw water chilling machines, packaged terminal heat pumps and more.

    Updates are posted daily in the ARI's searchable PrimeNet database. "PrimeNet includes all of the product performance information that is in both of these directories," said Mark Menzer, ARI's vice president of marketing and research.

  • Through a partnership with the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), will be making its site available to more than 9,000 ACCA members for information on technical education, jobs and more.

    "By aligning with HVAConline, we'll be able to offer ACCA members inroads to utilizing the Internet, which will not only help maintain quality everyday business activity, but also provide knowledge and assistance in Web-hosting and support," said Roger Jask, chief executive officer for the ACCA.

    HVAConline operates using BuildNet Inc. software, a leading provider of management software to contractors and distributors in the construction industry. The company operates and the hvac career search site "We're excited about this partnership because we should be able to help ACCA members use the Internet daily to help make their jobs easier and ultimately enhance their businesses."

  • Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp. has started an on-line "club" for contractors, builders and other professionals for whom power tools are part of their daily lives. At, members can get tips on new products or how to get the most out of their old reliables. A discussion group will help members to make more informed tool-buying decisions when it's time to replace that power saw or screwdriver.

    The site is divided into sections including Tool Tips, Heavy Duty Club News, Tool and Accessory Spotlights, Tool Testimonials, magazine articles, surveys and more. Membership is free. Simply sign up when you visit the web site. As an added incentive, members are eligible to receive special discounts on certain Milwaukee products.

  • Spectronics Corp. has updated its web site to allow visitors to find distributors of the company's "Spectroline" fluorescent leak detection products. At, visitors simply click on the "Distributors" icon and then point their mouse to "HVAC/R & Industrial." Click on the U.S. Distributors listing, enter your Zip code and the radius you want to search within and you're all set.

    The name, address, phone and fax numbers of Spectronics distributors in the area will be listed. A street map, driving directions and a list other nearby restaurants and businesses is also available. The web site also gives information on other company products and developments.

Improving profits is an issue of concern for every business owner and the price squeeze in recent years has especially been felt by those in the hvac industry. The ACT Group, the people behind are dedicated to helping everyone involved in the heating and cooling industry, from contractors to distributors, improve their bottom line.

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