In a sector that is evolving technologically as rapidly as the renewable heating field, it’s vital that plumbers and installers train up on the latest products to stay ahead of the curve, says Floortherm’s new General Manager, Niall Duffy.
Taking over the reins at the start of June 2021, Niall immediately focused the company’s efforts on developing a range of free installation training courses on the Daikin Altherma heat pump product range, the Vent Axia mechanical ventilation heat recovery systems along with all other product pillars supplied by Floortherm.
Previously a member of Floortherm’s design team before leaving to join Daikin Ireland, Niall returned to the Newry-based firm armed with hands on understanding of the importance of training from the installer point of view.
“Our training courses aim to provide mechanical contractors and installers with the knowledge and skill base to enable them to resolve issues on site without having to rely on our engineering team,” explained Niall. “They will understand the systems, how to commission and service the units as well as learn basic fault- finding tips.
“Also, they’ll be able to provide the home owner with system demos and show them the key components during system handover. The home-owner will then have a better understanding about the operating system and how to make it run as efficiently as possible.”
Floortherm is one of the largest distributors of underfloor heating and renewable systems to the market in Ireland and is committed to delivering fully designed, energy-efficient products and systems to installers, merchants, contractors and self-builders.
Their main product ranges include Daikin Altherma heat pumps, Vent Axia mechanical ventilation heat recovery systems along with bespoke Floortherm- branded underfloor heating solutions.
“We also provide the full range of M&E schematics for every installation that leaves our Sustainable Home Centre,” said Niall. “Our design team caters for underfloor heating design for domestic, residential or commercial projects – all designed to the latest European regulations. On the ground, our engineering team looks after all our on site training and commissioning assistance to all installers.”
Floortherm’s Sustainable Home Centre training facilities will host the company’s free installer courses, delivered at three levels: basic, advanced and service partner. “If you’ve never installed a heat pump before or if you have a long list of installations under your belt, this market is constantly developing, so there is much to learn at all levels of proficiencies,” said Niall.
“Manufacturers regularly launch new products along with efficiency and design upgrades for existing models of heat pumps and heat recovery units. If you are in the installation business, it is essential to keep on top of everything that is coming out, and to have the knowledge to keep customers advised on what is available.
“If an installer wants to come and just get product knowledge or get into the servicing side of the business, we have the training facilities to provide that service for them. We see this as an opportunity to train and empower the installers so they are in complete control of their installation.”
Floortherm’s training facilities include two working Daikin heat pump units as well as a range of demo units, so installers get hands- on experience working with the products.
“We also have working models of Vent Axia heat recovery units to provide training on balancing and commissioning of the heat recovery system,” added Niall. “Technology advances in this sector all the time; and by providing these courses, Floortherm can train and give installers the tools to stay on top of industry changes.”
Floortherm is growing from strength to strength, performing strongly even during the Covid-19 lockdowns. “We are lucky that our product range allows us to expand into both the new build and retrofit market,” explained Niall. “For example, the new Daikin’s Altherma HHT unit can work with existing piping and radiators and entirely replace an existing oil boiler.
“Renewable heating is an exciting industry to be in,” concluded Niall. “We’ve come through the Covid-19 in a strong position, thankfully, and we hope that it continues to go that way.”
Installer Training Courses
The courses will run monthly, beginning in August and will target three skill levels:
Basic Installer: Basic installer course, examines the new Daikin and Vent Axi products as they emerge and the advantages of each product.
Advanced installer: Covers system set up for commissioning, fault finding and servicing.
Service partner: Examines major fault errors and training installers up to work alongside Floortherm engineers to help cover warranty claims across the range.
Course numbers: Limited to 10 due to Covid-19 restrictions. Extra course dates will be organised to accommodate high demands.