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Energy Solutions Center Inc.

400 N. Capitol St., NW 4th Floor
Washington, DC 20001

Voice 202-824-7152
E-mail dweiss@escenter.org

 

News

An interview with Manny Jimenez with NAVIEN

  • Manny, what are the primary markets for your gas-fired condensing wall-hung tankless water heating, boilers and combination boilers (we call them “combi-boilers”) technology?

    • Thanks for asking about our product markets -- our markets are new build and retrofit residential and commercial projects. Restaurants, Hotels, Multi-family, Schools, and Medical Facilities are also strong markets.

  • Tell us about your existing product offering NPE, NCB, NHB:

    • Size ranges 150,000 to 199,900 btu/h on water heaters, 80,000/150,000 to 120,000/199,900 btu/h on “combi-boilers,” 55,000 to 150,000btu/h on boilers;

    • Efficiencies up to 0.99EF of water heaters, 95.0% AFUE rating on boilers and “combi-boilers;”

    • Best market applications: New build and retrofit residential and commercial projects. Restaurants, Hotels, Multi-family and medical facilities.

  • What are the competitive advantages of your product compared to other technologies?

    • For the NPE Series: Dual stainless steel heat exchangers resist scale build up, negative pressure gas valve allows use of ½” gas line in most cases, highest efficiency on the market of up to 0.99EF, best heat exchanger warranty (15yr residential or 8 yr commercial), and 2” PVC venting up to 60’. ComfortFlow® recirculation,  which is a Navien exclusive technology integrating a recirculation pump and buffer tank inside the tankless water heater allows Navien’s NPE-A series to have an industry leading 0 GPM activation rate, something no other tankless water heater features.

    • For the NCB Series Combi-Boiler: The same dual stainless steel heat exchangers for heating the home with an additional dedicated flat-plate heat exchanger for domestic hot water. When a call for DHW is detected a valve diverts fluids from the space heating loop into one side of the DHW flat plate heat exchanger so that potable water never mixes with your heating loop fluids. A single NCB240 can provide space heating up to 120,000BTU/H and 199,900BTU/H of DHW, freeing up valuable floor space previously given to a floor standing boiler and indirect tank. Energy Star has even given the NCB Series; the most efficient for 2015 rating with an AFUE of 95.0%.

    • The NHB Series Boiler: same dual stainless steel heat exchangers, a turn down ratio of up to 15:1, integrated controls and the same 2” PVC venting and ½” gas line benefits as the NPE and NCB. Energy Star has also given the NHB Series its Most Efficient for 2015 rating with an AFUE of 95.0%.

      *NPE, NCB and NHB Series product can all be easily field converted from natural gas to propane with included parts and instructions.

  • Tell us about your new/newer products you are bringing to the market this year?

    We are introducing the NHB Series Boilers.

    • What are the key benefits of these new products? Dual stainless steel heat exchangers, a turn down ratio of up to 15:1, integrated controls and the same 2” PVC venting and ½” gas line benefits as the NPE and NCB. Energy Star has also given the NHB Series its Most Efficient for 2015 rating with an AFUE of 95.0%.

    • Any specific target market you plan to pursue with these new products? New build and retrofit residential and commercial projects. Restaurants, Hotels, Multi-family, and medical facilities.

  • Can your product(s) reduce impacts on the environment and, if so, how?

    • Ultra low Nox emissions and high efficiency, which means less wasted energy.

  • What misconceptions do you deal with when talking to potential customers about your product?

    • The biggest misconception is that tankless water heaters cannot adequately supply all hot water needs as compared to a tank or boiler. Also, that all tankless water heaters are the same. Only condensing tankless can utilize the maximum amount of btu’s without wasting energy. For instance, our NPE210-S takes in 180,000btu/h and due to its 0.99EF has an output of ~178,000 btu/h. A similar sized non-condensing tankless on the market that takes in 199,900 btu/h but has only a 0.82 EF would have an output of only ~163,000 btu/h. As you can see, less energy is consumed but higher output is achieved with Navien. Regarding our combi-boiler, it is often a challenge to convince customers that it can handle the heating and domestic hot water needs of the whole home in the same unit.

  • Who is your direct customer?

    • A property/homeowner, a contractor or a distributor. We sell exclusively through wholesale distribution channels.

  • What are your corporate strategies to communicate with and educate potential customers about your products?

    • East and West coast state-of-the-art training facilities with live-fire product. Our west coast facility is undergoing a huge renovation and will be re-opening soon! We also have field trainers that travel throughout the US and Canada providing training from lunch-n-learns to full 1-2 day training for contractors, engineers and architects (specifiers). We also have regularly scheduled webinars available.

  • What are the market barriers to greater deployment of your product?

    • Education of consumers, contractors as it pertains to Navien’s technological advantages, and total installed price compared to other tank and tankless manufacturers

 

  • What could gas utilities do to promote the deployment and acceptance of your products?

    • Utilities should give rebates to consumers that award the most money based on the highest efficiency ratings.