CertainTeed plants excel in safety, environmental management

VALLEY FORGE, Pa. - CertainTeed Corp. has announced that two of its fiberglass insulation plants have met safety milestones, while another plant has achieved environmental management standards.

CertainTeed's Chowchilla, Calif., plant has joined the Saint-Gobain Millionaires Club, having logged more than 1 million hours of operation without a lost-time accident. Saint-Gobain is CertainTeed's parent company.

The plant is the ninth CertainTeed plant to join the Millionaires Club. The honor is part of a Saint-Gobain safety initiative. The program was developed in 2004 to recognize plants achieving zero lost-time injuries and to encourage other plants to do the same.

"Maintaining a safe work environment is one of the main things we strive for at our plant," said James Vicary, manager of the Chowchilla plant. "I'm very proud of our employees for all their hard work and the daily caution they take to help keep our facility accident free."

Well on its way to joining Saint-Gobain's Millionaires Club is the CertainTeed plant in Mountaintop, Pa., which has gone 800,000 hours of operation without a lost-time accident.

"At our Mountaintop facility, keeping employees safe and injury free is one of our top priorities," said plant manager Marsha Holt. "Our employees are dedicated not only to getting the job done, but also getting it done safely."

CertainTeed is also recognizing the achievement of its fiberglass insulation plant in Athens, Ga. The plant's environmental management system complies with new international standards following a reassessment audit from system registrar QMI.

QMI auditors recently reported that the Athens, Ga., plant's environmental management system met all requirements to achieve registration to the new International Organization Standardization 14001:2004 standards.

According to CertainTeed, the environmental management system provides a company with a solid framework for meeting environmental challenges, and the ISO standard provides guidance to help organizations implement or improve those systems.

The QMI audit included four days of interviews with plant managers, plant tours and document reviews. The Athens plant is the third CertainTeed plant to achieve the ISO standard registration, following plants in Kansas City, Mo., and Chowchilla, Calif.

"In this day and age, it's very important for our companies to keep up to date on pressing environmental issues and how to deal with them," said Marilyn DeLong, manager of the Athens plant. "I believe our staff has really stepped up to the plate to show its concern for the environment. We take pride in that tradition."

Johnson Controls completes purchase of York Corp.

MILWAUKEE - Johnson Controls Inc. has officially completed its acquisition of York International Corp., one of the largest suppliers of HVAC equipment services.

The Johnson Controls board of directors elected former York CEO and President C. David Myers as vice president and corporate officer for Johnson Controls. The company also named Myers as president of its building-efficiency division.

"The complementary capabilities of the two businesses create an offering that will reshape our industry," said Myers.

Johnson Controls reports that the purchase will result in the delivery of "one-stop systems, faster installations, more efficient operations and a competitive cost structure."

Some systems-related priorities include the melding of Johnson Controls' Metasys building management system and York's ISN ConnXsys controls to ensure uninterrupted operations. In addition, each company will benefit from factory-mounted controls from Johnson Controls on select light-commercial York equipment to offer packaged rooftop units with both N2 and BacNet protocols, officials said.

"In most cases, the best solution for our customers will be an integrated Johnson Controls/York offering," said Myers. "When that's not the case, we will offer our customers flexibility and address their needs with other solutions."

Centria starts second phase of upgrades

MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. - Centria Coating Services has started phase two of its coil-coating operations in Ambridge, Pa.

The company will upgrade drives, motors, programmable logistic controls and accumulator towers, and install new coater heads.

According to the company, the project will increase its overall coil-coating capacity while supporting the growth of its coating services business.

"Completing the second phase of our Ambridge improvements will enhance our ability to meet our customers' requirements and increase our overall capacity," said Jim Dockey, director of sales and marketing for Centria's coating services.

The current upgrades are the third in a series of improvements to Centria's coating lines. The first occurred in 2004, upgrading the width and speed of the Cambridge, Ohio, coating line. Ambridge's first phase of upgrades was completed in mid-2005 with production improvements including the installation of new ovens, oxidizer, coil splicer and improved coil-handling capabilities.

Also in 2005, the facility constructed new offices and completed an overall exterior renovation.

Companies announce price increases

Carrier Corp. and Hansen Technologies Corp. are the latest manufacturers to announce price hikes for 2006.

Carrier has placed a 6 percent price increase on most residential HVAC equipment. The increase applies to Carrier, Bryant and Payne brands, and is effective immediately. The company also announced a price increase of 4 percent on commercial unitary and applied equipment. This includes Carrier and Bryant brands. The new prices went into effect Feb. 27.

Effective immediately, Hansen Technologies will implement a 3.5 percent price increase.

According to the company, it will honor pricing on existing orders and provide project protection on quotations issued before Jan. 1. Protected quotes must have been ordered by the end of January and scheduled for shipment prior to Feb. 28.

Onset data logger named top product

The Hobo FlexSmart Data Logger from Onset Computer Corp. was one of the top products of 2005, according to Buildings magazine.

Hundreds of products were reviewed by the magazine's editorial staff and facilities professionals, and evaluated based on a number of factors, including performance, characteristics, solutions applicability, uniqueness and reader interest.

The product is a modular, reconfigurable data-logging system that enables energy and facility managers to solve energy and industrial monitoring problems. Signal-conditioning modules convert signals from nearly any type of sensor.

System measurement of the data logger includes True RMS, AC current and voltage, power demand and energy consumption, differential air pressure, pulse and contact closure, gauge pressure, as well as plug-and-play sensors for measuring temperature, relative humidity and other environmental conditions.

Illinois Tool Works buys sealant business

DANVERS, Mass. - Adhesives and sealants maker Schnee-Morehead Inc. has been acquired by ITW Performance Polymers, part of Illinois Tool Works.

Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

The Irving, Texas-based Schnee-Morehead sells approximately 320 products under trademarks such as Tacky Tape, Acryl R, Permathane and Pro Installer. The company manufactures and supplies various butyl products, solution acrylics, urethanes, water-based and warm-applied adhesives, among other products.

"We are pleased to welcome the talented people of Schnee-Morehead to our team, and we are excited about the opportunities this acquisition presents," said David Parry, president of ITW Performance Polymers. "S-M management in Texas will be staying on to oversee day-to-day operations."

Rusty Goger will take over as COO for the retiring President Robert A. Schnee.

"This is a great opportunity for us," said Goger. "With Performance Polymers we'll have autonomy to run our business, but we'll also have the financial support we need to better serve our customers. This support will allow us to develop new products, improve our manufacturing efficiencies, and seek additional acquisitions to further expand our niche market positions."

Hypertherm reports successful United Way campaign

HANOVER, N.H. - Hypertherm Inc. donated over $94,000 to its United Way campaign in 2005, a 16 percent increase over last year's donations.

Contributions from individual employees, plus proceeds from raffle and bake sales were matched by the corporation.

"This year's United Way campaign was another record breaker," wrote Barbara Couch, owner and vice president of human resources in a memo to all Hypertherm and Centricut associates. "With natural disasters like the tsunami and Hurricane Katrina pulling on our resources, I am especially moved by your generosity."

Hypertherm credits the success of its 2005 United Way campaign to a range of factors. Chief among them was the dedication of a United Way campaign team including co-chairs Lindsey DeJong and Wayne Elliot, and the continued involvement of last year's chairwoman, Belinda Peavey.

A new organization, Workplace Campaign Council, initiated by the Upper Valley United Way office, allowed networking between many area workplace campaigns. The council met three times throughout the year to exchange ideas.

The mission of the campaign is to improve lives. More than 1,350 local United Way chapters across the country bring people and resources together. Total United Way donations in 2005 exceeded $3.6 billion.

Emerson celebrates 50 years of Mexico operations

Emerson Motor Technologies' operations in Monterrey, Mexico, has reached 50 years of service. Founded in 1955, the Motores U.S. de Mexico facility started with just 18 employees and now employs over 1,000 people.

"We are extremely proud of the administration, staff and employees at our Motores U.S. de Mexico plant for their tireless commitment to producing high quality U.S. motor products year after year after year," said Jim Lindemann, chairman of Emerson Motor Co. "They continue to demonstrate excellence in customer service by ensuring that our distributors, OEMs and end-user customers have a consistent, high quality supply of U.S. Motors products available to meet their needs around the globe."

Juan Antonio Salazar Vallone, plant manager since 1989, marked the company's 50th anniversary with an Oct. 15 celebration that included senior Emerson Motor Co. management. Both Lindemann and Ken Poczeka, industrial motor president, were in attendance.

U.S. Motors began making products in 1908 in a 4,000-square-foot facility in Los Angeles. The company expanded its operations to different locations and eventually went across the U.S. border in 1955.

Industry hits record AC shipments in November

ARLINGTON, Va. - In the first 11 months of 2005, the HVACR industry shipped over 8 million central air conditioners and air-source heat pumps - a record, according to ARI.

The Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute also reported that U.S. factory shipments totaled 629,583 in November, up 68 percent compared with shipments from the same month last year. Heat pump shipments of 168,960 were also up 45 percent compared with November 2004.

Factory stocks for November were up 26,291 units from October 2005, and up 20,189 units from November 2004. Distributor inventories for November were up 4,122 units from the previous month, and up 95,562 units from the same month last year.

November's distributor shipments were up 60 percent from last year, with year-to-date shipments up 15 percent.

Bryant teams up with radio personalities

INDIANAPOLIS - The Carey Brothers, famous for sharing home improvement tips on their syndicated radio program, will partner with Bryant Heating and Cooling Systems.

According to Bryant, the two will help educate consumers on the company's heating and cooling products. The Carey Brothers introduced Bryant as a sponsor during their radio show in January, and they were set to host a remote broadcast during the Bryant National Dealer Convention March 1 in Las Vegas.

James and Morris Carey are third-generation contractors in the San Francisco Bay area. Besides their radio show, the duo also writes a newspaper column and provides home improvement tips on their Web site. They have also made frequent television appearances, contributed regularly to Family Handyman magazine and authored books including Home Improvement All-In-One For Dummies, their latest.

"We are so proud to begin a relationship with Bryant Heating & Cooling Systems," said James Carey. "We seem to share the same values. Bryant dealers do whatever it takes to provide quality products and reliable services to consumers. At the same time, we do whatever it takes to provide our listeners, readers and viewers with answers to their questions on home maintenance and home improvement."

Bryant reports that it will serve as a primary heating and cooling resource for the Carey Brothers as they discuss and field questions from listeners about topics such as home comfort and indoor air quality. Bryant and the Carey Brothers will also provide listeners with industry trends through the Web site www.onthe house.com.