Long Wharf Theatre Project Wins Award for “Excellence In Construction”

photoThe Long Wharf Theater Main Stage project has been recognized for an “Excellence In Construction Award” by Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.
The Long Wharf Theater received over $24,000 in utility incentives from CL&P for being more efficient than required by code. Controlled Air, Inc. provided them with economical solution through custom design build, saving them well over $1mil from their original budget. Seven roof top units were installed: Three AAON single VAV variable speed units and four efficient Johnson Controls units. The RTU’s were connected to a CO2 detection system that allows them to limit the outside air intake to only what is necessary, saving money and energy. Noise was also a concern for our customer and as such, we worked directly with acoustical engineers to ensure that the air distribution system and equipment ran with the lowest level of noise possible.
Controlled Air, Inc. will be part of the team presented with the “Excellence In Construction Award” at a ceremony held on January 30, 2014.

Rebates & Incentives

Don’t forget that there are multiple rebates and incentives available to help pay for energy efficient upgrades.

  • CPACE – Low Interest loans paid back through the property tax bill. We have many customers who are finding this a great way to help finance upgrades!
  • CHP - The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA) seeks proposals for grants, loans, loan enhancements or power purchase incentives to help finance the cost of combined heat and power equipment for energy-generating projects.
  • LREC/ZREC - This LREC/ZREC program is a bidding process for projects to compete to obtain a 15-year revenue stream from the sale of RECs (Renewable Generation Credit) to the electric utilities.

New Deadly Trend Among Teens

R22_RefrigerantThere is a new trend among teens with deadly consequence, freon huffing. Huffing is the inhalation of chemicals, paint or gasoline through the nose or mouth. It is also referred to as sniffing, dusting or bagging. Freon huffing rapidly destroys brain cells and can lead to heart-failure, brain damage or death. It gives teens the feeling of being intensely drunk but quickly dissipates making detection difficult. Some teens even place a plastic bag over their head with the freon inside which can lead to suffocation.

Here are some statistics about huffing:

  • The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that one in five American teens have used Inhalants to get high.
  • According to Stephen J. Pasierb, President and CEO of The Partnership for Drug-Free America, 22% of 6th and 8th graders admitted abusing inhalants and only 3% of parents think their child has ever abused inhalants.
  • An analysis of 144 Texas death certificates by the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse involving misuse of inhalants found that the most frequently mentioned inhalant (35%) was Freon (51 deaths).  Of the Freon deaths, 42 percent were students or youth with a mean age of 16.4 years.
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse’s ‘Monitoring the Future’ study reveals that inhalant abuse among 8th graders is up 7.7% since 2002.
  • 55% of deaths linked to inhalant abuse are caused by “Sudden Sniffing Death Syndrome.”  SSDS can occur on the first use or any use.  The Inhalant causes the heart to beat rapidly and erratically, resulting in cardiac arrest.
  • 22% of inhalant abusers who died of SSDS had no history of previous inhalant abuse. In other words, they were first-time user.
  • “Huffing,” or inhaling volatile substances is becoming increasingly popular among children, especially among 12- to 14-year-olds (Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 1998;152(8):781–786).

To be proactive make sure to secure refrigerant, installing locking caps on an A/C unit is one possibility. There is a provision for securing refrigerant access ports on new construction  codified by the International Code Council (ICC) in the 2009 International Mechanical Code (IMC) and the 2009 International Residential Code (IRC) and has been accepted by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) for inclusion in the 2012 Uniform Mechanical Code (UMC), but these codes are not adopted by all jurisdictions.

Please be aware and take precautions about this tragic new trend with teens. It is important for us all to educate preteens and teens about the dangers of huffing. For more information visit UPROARORG.ORG or INHALANT ABUSE PREVENTION

CEFIA Releases RFP for Cogeneration (CHP) Pilot Program

Tecogen Cogeneration

Tecogen Cogeneration

CEFIA is charged with administering a three-year $6 million dollar pilot program. The total funding remaining in the program for all selected projects under this competitive solicitation is $5 million dollars. This program will offer support for projects that are below five megawatts.

However, funding will not exceed the equivalent of $450 per kilowatt of nameplate rated capacity. Financial support is intended to help you achieve a fair and reasonable payback and return on investment during the life of the project compared to purchasing the equivalent amount of power, fuel oil and/or gas from your utility. If you are interesting in installing cogeneration, this funding will offer incentives that will help pay for the installation.

The Children’s Community School

funny cartoon builderControlled Air, Inc. partnered with Alexion Pharmaceuticals, through their community outreach program, to install a security system at the Children’s Community School in Waterbury. The school was concerned with safety of their students, they had an on-going struggle with security issues happening both during and after school hours.

We installed a Johnson Controls card access system in conjunction with 16 cameras, DVR, and internet and phone access.

The system has already helped to apprehend individuals speeding through the school parking lot during school hours narrowly missing students. It has also helped to identify those involved in disagreements amongst groups of students.

During the installation process a kindergartner noticed our service technician, Rich Messner, up on the roof working. The student asked his teacher if Rich was Bob the Builder.  The teacher replied, “Maybe you should ask.”  The student waited patiently until Rich came down from the roof then shyly approached him and asked, “Are you Bob the Builder?”  Rich replied, “Yes, I am.” The student was very excited to have met one of his idols in person.

More than 20% of the project cost was donated by us at Controlled Air, Inc.

Gas Conversions

Governor Malloy’s $7 bil expansion of natural gas has made converting to natural gas a possibility for many homes and businesses. Currently there are no incentives to make the conversion, BUT there are incentives and rebates available for the equipment that will run on natural gas. Depending on your current oil or propane usage payback can be as little as 2 years.

  • Most natural gas furnaces and boilers are up to 96 percent efficient.
  • Natural gas produces fewer emissions of sulfur, carbon, and nitrogen than oil, and it leaves almost no ash particles after burning.
  • Natural gas costs less than heating oil and requires less maintenance.

Interested in finding out about converting? Contact us today 203-481-3531

Update on R-22 Refrigerant

R22_RefrigerantThe EPA has finally signed the 2012-2014 (yes a little late since it is already 2013) allocation rule for R-22, which dictates how much can be imported and produced.

Here are the figures:
2012  55 mil lbs, 38% reduction
2013  63 mil lbs, 21% reduction
2014  50 mil lbs, 18% reduction

The amounts allocated are higher then originally dictated in 2009, but the price for R-22 continues to rise. One of our suppliers for refrigerant told us there is no shortage of R-22, only that people are holding on to it to drive up the price! Unfortunately as it gets closer to 2020 when R-22 is to be phased out the price will continue to climb.

The EPA will will now begin drafting the 2015-2019 allocations from 50 millions pounds to 0 pounds in 2020.

If you are running old or outdated equipment it is a good time to start planning to replace the equipment with new energy efficient models that use refrigerant other than R-22. With the rebates and incentives available and the money saved on energy it will help make the new equipment more afforable.

Energy Efficiency Funding

This is just a quick summary of some funding available in energy efficiency for both large scale and small scale projects:


Connecticut Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) is an innovative program that is helping commercial, industrial and multi-family property owners access affordable, long-term financing for smart energy upgrades to their buildings.

C-PACE allows building owners to finance qualifying energy efficiency and clean energy improvements through placing a voluntary assessment on their property tax bill. Property owners pay for the improvements over time through this additional charge on their property tax bill and the repayment obligation transfers automatically to the next owner if the property is sold. Similar to a sewer tax assessment, capital provided under the C-PACE program is secured by a lien on the property, so low-interest capital can be raised from the private sector with no government financing required.
Read More: http://www.c-pace.com/

Commercial Solar Hot Water RFP, Incentives and Financing

The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority offers incentives, through designated participating contractors, to any customer of Connecticut Light & Power or The United Illuminating Company who wishes to install solar hot water systems. Click here for the incentive process guidelines.

CEFIA is providing incentives and financing to support Commercial Solar Hot Water projects through a competitive Request for Proposal (RFP) process. This is the fifth round and final round of solicitations under the current program launched in April 2012.  The “funds available” (below) reflect changes in project awards from previous rounds.
Read More About Solar Thermal Incentives

Federal Tax Relief

Extension of renewable energy incentives, the R&E tax credit and other business incentives: The agreement extends tax relief for businesses through the end of next year. This means extending the Production Tax Credit, a key incentive for renewable energy , as well as the Research & Experimentation tax credit. In addition, the agreement extends 50 percent bonus depreciation, a cost-effective temporary measure to support investment and growth. All of these would be extended through the end of 2013.

SunShot Incubator Program (Round 8)

Funding: Up to $12M Total
Close Date: 04/30/2013
Funding Organization: SunShot Initiative
Funding Number: DE-FOA-0000838


The SunShot Incubator Program is an aggressive pay for performance program focused on helping solar startups rapidly refine and commercialize promising, proven technologies and ideas. The program seeks to accelerate the commercialization of solar energy products and solutions that dramatically lower the cost of solar power.

This round of the SunShot Incubator Program is for both hardware and non-hardware solutions that reduce the cost of systems that convert solar energy into electric potential.

The SunShot Incubator program consists of five (5) tiers (divided between hardware and non-hardware) to which applications may be submitted.

Read More on the SunShot Site

Rebates, Incentives, and Tax Relief programs are always changing. Check back to stay on top of the most updated information. Any questions? Want to know if your business energy project qualifies for rebates, incentives or tax breaks? Contact us 203-481-3531

Security & HVAC

lock-128Security and HVAC may not be one of the first associations that comes to mind, but it is something that we often consider. There are many instances where security is important during installation or repair of a HVAC systems.

  • Ductwork - Ductwork leaves openings to both the outside and throughout a building. These openings have been used in break-ins and jail break attempts. Usually ductwork openings are small and there is nothing to worry about, but if it is a government, corrections, FBI, Marshalls or commercial building contain highly confidential information it is important to make sure strict security measures are followed. In these buildings where the ductwork is greater then 96 square inches wide, bars are required. Burglar bars are installed into the structure of a building with concrete or welded in place to make them extremely difficult to remove.

U.S.Marshals Service Areas. The U.S.Marshals Service area HVAC system shall be designed for continuous operation and shall be independently controlled and zoned. All ductwork and air circulation openings penetrating the secure area envelope, including prisoner circulation areas, shall be provided with security bars. GSA Requirements

  • Building Controls – Building Controls can be linked with security controls to allow for complete control over any building. This is a special energy management system that ties everything into one location allowing facility managers to monitor both security and the building environment. Building controls combines the ability to see, identify, and act upon critical systems information and possible problems almost as quickly as they occur. Rather than having each part of your HVAC system as a separate entity, controls combines the ability to monitor and operate all of your systems from one place. A Security controls system can include access control, video surveillance & monitoring, digital video recording, control readers, door swipes, and control cards. When the two are combined your energy management system becomes a true building management system with access security and controls for your entire building.
  • copper-theftCopper Theft – Copper theft is on the rise since the downturn in the economy and the increase in the value of copper. Often during the night thieves rip open condensing units and cut the copper lines. It is not always noticed right away, often times only being discovered once the unit is needed. Sometimes theft can be deterred just by moving the unit onto the roof, other times fencing or security is necessary.

Want more information about HVAC and Security? Give us a call 203-481-3531.




Special Rebates & Incentives Available until 12/31/2012

Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that $3 million in additional energy efficiency incentives are now available for residents and businesses replacing furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and refrigerators as a result of damage from Super Storm Sandy. These incentives are only available until December 31st. The incentives will apply for replacement of equipment with more energy efficient models between October 29 and December 31. Anyone seeking information about the various energy efficiency incentives or financing options available for replacing or repairing equipment should call the Connecticut Energy Information Line at 1-877-WISE-USE.

In addition to these incentives, Governor Malloy also announced that special funding is available, in the form of low-cost financing for eligible equipment with optional on-utility-bill repayment for customers who make energy efficiency upgrades in equipment or insulation and air sealing while renovating or reconstructing their residence or business as a result of storm damage.