It is that time of year again where the weather starts to turn warmer and homeowners start making plans to make improvements to their homes & landscapes. Many homeowners are DIYers but a large number are not and will call on you to help them with their projects. These weekend warrior wannabes don’t know a hammer from a nail and need all the help they can get from a prepared contractor like you.
Service Partners carries a variety of tools to help you on roofing jobs to building decks. Your tools will likely take a beating over time but don’t worry; Service Partners’ branches keep extras on hand for when you need a replacement. We carry extension cords, hammer staplers, safety & fall protection, flexed knifes and many other accessories you’ll need on the job.
Be prepared for your customers and give your nearest Service Partners location a call to help you gather all the accessories you need for a busy summer.
Interested in learning about Service Partners? Watch out company video or read below to see learn what our employees, and our customers have to say about us.
30 years ago all you needed to be an insulation contractor was a staple gun in a ladder. Today’s installers need the latest insulation products and installation and safety accessories, and they need it delivered fast. Service Partners is the leading nationwide distributor of quality insulation from brands like CertainTeed, JohnsManville, Knopf, Owens Corning, BASF, and Dow.
We have 75 locations nationwide and we work hard to deliver next day service. Because when we do our job fast you can get your job done faster.
We asked our team to give us their perspective on the company culture and mission of Service Partners and how that impacts the relationships we share with our customers. Here are some of the highlights.
“We are a bunch of strategically placed little businesses all over the country. So at the end of the day we you know we want to be the one stop shop for insulation contractors.” – Tim Bichlmeier, Sales Manager
“We cover everything from below grade foundation products, waterproofing products, all the way up to the roofline.” – Debra Constance, District Sales Manager.
“The other products may vary from accessories to insulation ceiling tile, roofing, gutters. I think the product mix is what makes us very successful.” – Roy Machado, Sales Manager
“It’s a people company. Yes we sell products, yes we move things around warehouses, but in the end it’s about relationships and it has been from the get-go.“ – Corey Doise, Controller
“I take what the relationships say that Service Partners has with its vendors. I take those relationships out to my customer base and potential customers. – Ken Martin, Outside Sales Rep
“I really think what you develop on a relationship basis is what brings people back to you.” – Leslie Ray, Inside Sales
“Relationships are real important for me because we help them grow and when they grow we grow. That’s what it’s about”. – Debra Constance, District Sales Manager.
“We have a lot of long-term, even 20-year relationships with some customers. We share what’s going on with their families, we share what’s going on with their business, and how we can help them grow their business.” – Wendy Kessler, Customer Care
“Whether our people are in the field or whether it’s a customer who calls in, we’re to offer the best service toward them. I just like being a smiling face there. I enjoy going to work every day.” Lisa Shipman, Telecom Administrator
“We’re the real deal. We don’t just say we service our customers, we do it every day.” – Roy Machado, Sales Manager
“Every morning at seven o’clock when that truck opens its doors Service Partners comes through for us, and they have exactly what you ordered. The name says it all – service. They’re there when they say they’re going be there. Good quality products, good people.” – Robert Vance, Customer
“You know it’s just at work that we both need each other and they’re there to back me up. That means a lot.” – Mike Layman, Customer
“Good people doing business with good people. That just seems to be my mantra and I believe that’s Service Partners’ mantra.” – Debra Constance, District Sales Manager.
“This is not just a job for me. I’m able to go out and bond with people that are really special and I appreciate that every day when I come to work.” – Roy Machado, Sales Manager
“We’re not just here just to make money, but we’re also here to be a help to our community, and to do what we can to make things better for someone else.“ -Lisa Shipman, Telecom Administrator
“I can’t wait to see what Service Partners has to offer in the future – for the company, the employees the customer.” – Leslie Ray, Inside Sales
“Pretty amazing how much friendships you have throughout the company and until you sit down and think about it your like – wow that’s pretty cool.” – Tim Bichlmeier, Sales Manager
“Are you honest in how you deal on a day-to-day basis individually and professionally? Yes. Do I see that at Service Partners all the time? Yes. It’s when you can go home at night and smile about the day, smile about the interactions you’ve had with a customer or a supplier that’s good.” Simon Kavanagh – Senior Vice President
This home energy audit infographic is courtesy of the United States Department of Energy.
Energy Saver 101
What is a home energy audit?
A home energy audit is the first step to improving your home’s energy efficiency. A home energy audit helps you pinpoint where your house is losing energy and what you can do to save money. Home energy auditors will also assess health and safety issues that might exist in your home. The audit involves two parts: The home assessment and analysis using computer software.
Did you know? You could save 5 to 30 percent on your energy bill by making an efficiency upgrades identified in your home energy audit.
The Auditor’s Toolbox
Below are some of the tools energy auditors used to inspect homes energy use.
Telescoping ladder: To reach into an attic or up high.
Screwdrivers, pliers and adjustable wrench: To remove outlet plate and inspect appliances.
25 foot tape measure: For making a footprint sketch of the house.
Flashlight and batteries: To help see behind appliances.
Digital cameras: To help seeing to hard to reach places and document elements of the house.
Pen and paper: For taking notes.
Infrared camera: To help determine the air leakage and insulation.
Combustion analyzer: Tool designed to sample flue gases in vented combustion appliances and measure flue gas temperature, leaks and carbon monoxide.
Blower door: A large fan that depressurizes the home by sucking air out. This test simulates the effect of a 20 mph wind to allow the auditor to find air leaks.
Manometer: A gauge that measures the difference in pressure in a home in point air leakage and test exhaust devices for proper operation.
Smoke generating device: Produces a thin stream of smoke or non-toxic fog to help find air leakage and duct leakage.
Watt meter: Measures the electrical energy use by various devices throughout the home.
Soap bubbles: Used to confirm fuel leaks in combustion appliances.
Digital probe thermometer: For testing temperature rise and heating equipment and operating temperatures.
Inspection mirror: To see into constricted spaces.
Draft gauge: To test for chimney drafts.
Moisture meter: Measures moisture level and wood in other materials.
The Home Energy Audit Checklist:
Certified Home energy auditors should go through the following steps in a home energy audit.
Analyze past years fuel bills to determine base energy consumption.
Interviewed the homeowner to learn about problems and how the home operates.
Explain the audit process.
Conduct exterior inspection.
Health and safety inspection.
Interior visual inspection.
Assess electrical system for safety concerns.
Combustion appliance inspection.
Blower door test.
Analyzing findings and create a comprehensive home energy report.
Home Energy Audit: What to Look For
Note the number and location of air registers.
Inspect windows and doors and check for access window condensation.
Note and test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
Inspect lighting fixtures and recessed lights.
Check for air leaks around the outlets, fixtures, doors and windows.
Inspect the fireplace.
Note thermostat type and setting.
Check for wall insulation and framing type.
Look for indoor air quality problems and lead-based paint.
In the Attic
Check for major air leakage issues in places like chimney bypasses, recessed lighting and HVAC ducks.
Note to any signs of water leakage.
Inspect wiring for safety issues.
In the Basement and Utility Room
Furnace: test for fuel leaks, change the furnace filter, clean furnace blower.
Water heater: Note thermostat setting and installation on tank and piping; test draft hood.
Perform combustion appliances owned testing on all combustible fuel fired appliances.
Inspect duct system and dryer venting.
In the Kitchen/Bathroom
Look for electrical or other hazards.
Assess electrical appliance energy use with a watt meter or manufacturer nameplate.
Check for moisture and excess water vapor.
Assess vent fans for flow rate.
What is the blower door test?
A blower door test locates air leaks by using a special fan to depressurize a house. Blower tests are conducted before and after air sealing to measure the effectiveness of the work.
Did you know? The average home has enough air leakage to add up to a two-foot-square hole. That’s like leaving a medium-sized window open 24 hours a day!
Mythbusting Infrared Imaging
Infrared cannot see through objects or air. It can only see temperatures with cold objects appearing darker in warm objects appearing lighter.
Infrared doesn’t see color. The color is computer-generated to make a difference in temperature easier to see to the untrained eye.
Infrared imaging should not mean the only tool an energy auditor uses. When used during the blower door test infrared imaging is a powerful tool for determining air leaks.
Are your thermal imaging services in high demand or hopefully headed that way? You might be using your camera several times a week. Maybe even daily in your building inspection energy auditing restoration or roofing business. If that’s the case, FLIR T-series B cameras are definitely going to help take the load off.
Available in four models and with resolution up to 640 by 480, these are the most ergonomic thermal imagers you’re going to find out there. One of the primary features that distinguish t-series from all other thermal cameras is its rotating optical block. It lets you point the lens up or down 120 degrees and still keep the display right and easy view. This makes it much more comfortable for inspecting high low and other tough angles.
Optional interchangeable lenses are another t-series advantage, and there’s a great selection of them to help fit the view you need – including excellent wide angle and telephoto optics for scanning large spaces and roofs. Auto focus is another way T series makes thermal inspections more efficient. Focus makes a dramatic difference when it comes to accurately measuring temperature and just a touch of this button is the fast way to get there, but you always have full control if you need it with the fine adjustment on the t420 and 440 or the focus ring on the t620 and 640.
Another FLIR innovation that brings out even more detail is the MSX or multispectral dynamic imaging. This is a whole new mode beyond picture-in-picture and thermal fusion. MSX enhances thermal images with visible spectrum definition captured by the built-in digital camera. It virtually etches those details into the thermal pictures in real time so you clearly see numbers labels and other identifiable things to help you locate where problems are.
Every t-series camera comes equipped with Wi-Fi communication to let you stream live video to your smartphone or to your tablet using our FLIR tools mobile app. It also gives you a remote control of camera functions like focus, level, and span, color palette choices and temperature measurement tools – pretty handy if you or someone else wants to monitor from a distance. You can import and analyze stored JPEGs with the app too while you’re still on the job site quickly create a professional report and share it by email to get a faster response for repairs. T-series also has Bluetooth that talks to Extech meter link tools. This is a very simple way to embed moisture level data right into your thermal images when you need to measure more than just temperature.
T-series bx cameras offer the broadest temperature ranges and sensitivity increases as you move up through the line of camera models. Extra sensitivity helps you see subtler temperature differences more clearly – important when you’re looking for traces of moisture and small air leaks for example. The touch screen on t-series cameras puts measurement and imaging tools right at your fingertips, and on the t440 and 640 you can even use it to sketch quick notes and drawings on IR and visual images. The t640 also has a viewfinder to help you see clearly even in the brightest outdoor conditions.
There are a lot of great features here to help you out – especially when you have a slate full of customers to take care of. If you’re looking for the highest image detail to put in reports that contractors insurance companies and your customers can rely on, and the most ergonomic way to capture those images, then you’ll find it in t-series cameras.
We highlighted the importance of submitting your business to Google Places. The landscape is changing on the web and it is vital to have a Google+ profile to help boost your local listing to the top of the search results. Google is putting more of a focus on promoting its own social network Google+. Having a Google+ profile for your business can only help your local listings as well your business’ presence on the web.
Google will walk you through the Google+ Setup process here. If you haven’t yet signed up for Google+ yet, you should do so soon. The web is changing and you want to be ahead of the curve instead of chasing the pack.
Building trustworthy relationships with your customers is a vital part of expanding your business. A sure fire way to help build trust between you and your customers is to be up to date on current events in your industry. This will give you an advantage over competition by showcasing your knowledge.
A great way to keep up with current information is to frequently read blog posts by top sources. One source we recommend is the New York Times. The New York Times has a variety of blogs that keep you up to date on many of the most relevant topics in the industry. The blog “Green” from the New York Times is an outstanding resource to obtain the latest information on energy and the environment. The next time you are with your customer, you will be able to spark up conversation and hopefully it will lead to future business.
Service Partners is the largest insulation distributor in the United States. Currently, Service Partners has over 75 branch locations that provide building materials such as fiberglass insulation, shingles, fireplaces, spray foam and accessories to all 50 states.
In today’s economical climate it is advantageous for your business to have a website. If your business doesn’t have a website, you should at least start a blog. You can start a blog for free at http://wordpress.com/. This site will walk you through every step to starting your blog.
Why a blog?
A blog is a great start to helping build your brand as an expert and trustworthy source in the industry. It will allow you to publish relevant content about your industry, business and own expertise on the web. Writing valuable and informative content is a great way to connect with your customers and promote your business. It will also help launch the start of your web presence to attract and retain more customers.
Marketing Tip: Content is King on the web. The more unique and original content you can put on your blog, the better chance you have of being found on search engine sites such as Google and Bing.
Service Partners is the nation’s largest insulation distributor with over 75 branch locations across the United States. We supply fiberglass insulation, spray foam, gutters and metal building insulation to businesses and contractors.
Welcome to the Service Partners Contractors Club. Your loyalty has earned you membership in this value-added, customer-focused club. We are excited about this new program it will bring you, our customer, more value to your business, while recognizing your commitment to Service Partners as your trusted supplier. From our informational webinars on industry related subjects that provide you with the latest information, to our training programs that help you maintain a competitive edge in the marketplace, every aspect of the Service Partners Contractors Club has been built with your success in line. For example, our solid vendor relationships are a key factor to your business development and we have numerous relationships with successful vendors to help grow your bottom line.
These programs work with discounts exclusively for you as a club member. Here are a few of those current relationships. Allpro Technology is a preferred partner of our Contractors Club. Allpro Insulator Software is a premium operational software that manages all aspects of your business software issues. Electric Gas Industry Association, or ECGI, is a national leading organization that provides business training and financing to help small businesses throughout the country. HomeAdvisor, formerly ServiceMagic, is a market leader in generating qualified leads for service businesses across the country based on location and specifically help you in the retrofit marketplace. Energy Circle Pro is a complete website and marketing platform designed for independent energy efficiency professionals. They offer professional website designed with numerous package options and extensive CMS platform training is always included.
In addition to marketing service providers, we’ve developed tried-and-true marketing tools for our club members, Tools that continue to pull in results. Custom door hangers, postcards, and leave behind cost effective methods that are used to great effect without breaking the bank.
Now a bit about our training programs: The Service Partners Contractors Club has developed a building science and Home Performance training program available to members at a substantial cost savings. BPI is the nation’s premier standards development and credentialing organization, or residential energy efficiency retrofit work. Your club membership offers training by BPI standards in both the analyst professional and envelope professional designations. As an authorized BPI test we also administer the certification exams for analysts and envelope professional certifications.
Be on the lookout for a new training project that is under way inside the Contractors Club. We are working with Advanced Energy out of Raleigh North Carolina to develop online training modules for best practices in fiberglass
batt insulation, blown fiberglass insulation, and air sealing. These trainings will be available in both English and Spanish versions and available directly on your office computer. They will include a certification exam after each session. These trainings will be available to all your staff at a minimal cost.
Many contractors today don’t have a website but that doesn’t mean that their business can’t be found on the World Wide Web. There are a variety of business submission websites out there that can help promote your business for FREE. One of the biggest and most effective ways to promote your business is to submit it to Google Local. You don’t have to have a website to submit your business to Google. This will allow your business location, address & phone number to show up on Google when users are looking for your products or services.
If you have a website, be sure to add the url to the Google Local listing as well. Also, there will be a place specifically for you to list your products or services such as insulation installer, home remodeling, home building & repair, etc.
Google will share this information with other websites across the internet allowing your marketing reach to expand far beyond Google. If your organization is not already on Google Places sign up today and increase your company’s visibility online.