AHR Expo Releases its 2023 Trend Report
By HPAC MagazineGreen Technology HPAC General automation decarbonization HVAC/R industry supply chain trends
Industry representatives from associations, manufacturers and contractors in the field share their views on the current state of the industry and predictions heading into 2023.
The organizers of the AHR Expo (taking place February 6-8, 2032 in Atlanta) have released their 2023 Trend Report which includes information compiled from HVAC/R industry associations, a few manufacturers and from some contractors working in the field.
Following a similar pattern from previous years, the industry representatives share their views on the current state of the industry, opportunities, threats and market predictions heading into 2023.
The full report includes comprehensive answers; below is a sample of common themes found in the full report.
- Regulations remain a driving force towards a cleaner future: key words and phrases we’ll continue to hear in 2023 will include decarbonization, green transition, new standards will drive new technology to market faster, and refrigerant updates will also lead to new tech.
- The built environment is evolving: property owners are expressing new demands for efficiency, smarter technology that operates with building IT systems and the connected consumer, system automation, and greater awareness/acceptance of the longterm benefits of higher performing systems.
- Supply Chain Recovery: this recovery is leading to new practices in distribution adapted out of necessity, greater foresight and future planning from contractors and distributors, supply chain is still not back to normal.
- Inflation and Recession: trend towards more efforts on forecasting and planning, adjusting for client expectations and the new role of HVAC/R in the building owner budget.
- Workforce and training: more emphasis being placed on the continued need for a strong and skilled workforce, more insight into the projected increasing demands for the industry, improved flow of information/training across the chain: IAQ, changing regulations, application updates.
- Cybersecurity: greater emphasis on building control safety, increased awareness of threat considerations and continued planning for a “smart” connected future.
- Expansion, growth and meeting demand: greater awareness of how to manage multiple areas of growth within the industry (demand for electrification), educating the HVAC/R workforce first and secondly the end user, and then managing and meeting expectations – the consumer is more involved and getting more educated than ever before.
Representing ASHRAE, the current president, Farooq Mehboob, notes that jurisdictions globally are confronting climate change and recognizing that building decarbonization is an important component in their efforts.
ASHRAE’s position is that decarbonization of buildings and its systems must be based on a holistic analysis including healthy, safe, and comfortable environments, energy efficiency, environmental impacts, sustainability, operational security and economics.
ASHRAE sees a necessity for the HVAC/R industry to play a greater role in expanding its voice to educate the public and policy makers, and the association is committed to moving beyond existing industry silos and reaching a more mainstream audience using layman’s terms to highlight the positive contributions of the HVAC/R industry.
Interesting comments from contractors include:
“It’s a supply and demand world right now. Today’s price isn’t yesterday’s price, you have to stay sharp. Planning projects is risky, profit margins can be lost on material costs,” Dave Elliott (@hoosier_hvacr).
“The company I work for is buried in work. We haven’t slowed down at all. Business in general is fantastic … supply is a huge issue. Customers are looking to have systems fixed or replaced and parts and equipment are in short supply,” Mike Mayberry (@hvac_refer_guy)
“Customers being more interested in shopping around for repairs with various service providers seem to be more prevalent than in past years … [most pressing issues facing HVAC/R industry] lack of equipment availability and significant pricing increases. In our area we’ve seen at least a 30% increase in equipment cost across the board,” Brent Ridley (@toolpros)
The entire 32-page 2023 Trend Report is available to download for free.