What is the RPA doing for YOU?

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Greetings to my fellow hydronicians. Mark Eatherton here, the Executive Director of the Radiant Professionals Alliance, better known as the RPA. We (the IAPMO family) have been working hard behind the scenes in our efforts to provide you—our contractors, manufacturers, wholesalers and manufacturers representative members—with an opportunity to “Grow Radiant and Hydronics.” I have been with the organization for almost 10 months now, and have been hard at work on the following initiatives.

To date, we have initiated and advanced our 2015 Uniform Solar Energy and Hydronics Code, are contributing to the 2015 Uniform Mechanical Code provisions for adoption. Unfortunately, these things take time to get together, and once completed must be adopted by authorities having jurisdiction before they become enforceable, but we are on the move. We are in the process of developing a “Best Practices” guide, to be developed by our member contractors to give other members the opportunity to see how others are performing their installations. It will also serve as our Instructive Training Manual, which is a companion to the actual code to provide clarification for the verbiage being presented.

We are debuting our first Heat Spring educational offering, Fundamentals of Radiant Design, a six-week intense course taught by noted contractor, Dave Yates. This courses first run will be on January 13, and will run 6 weeks from that date. Having the opportunity to pick Dave Yates brain is more than worth the price of admission, and once completed, Dave’s students will have a much better understanding of the options available for delivering high grade, high efficiency radiant comfort. We are so much more than just radiant floors, and Dave will show you all of the options available, and explain how to use them. For more information, go to http://rpa.cammpus.com/

We have begun the formal ANSI process for developing a “Certified” Hydronic and Radiant Installers and Designers certificate. This is a very tight process, and we have some very regulated rules of development that must be followed in order to receive the final ANS certification. We need the input of contractors and designers to develop the pre qualification standards for this process.

We have decided to increase the levels of entry as it pertains to our annual Systems Design Showcase Awards program, to include smaller residential and commercial applications below 200 square feet, as well as unique control algorithms, unique alternative radiant heating methodologies, and unique alternative energy/renewable energy resources.

We have 8 standing committees that include Education, Codes and Standards, Technical, Hydronics Industry Alliance, Membership, Certification, Government Relations, Nominating committee, and one sub committee for commercial hydronics to the HIA committee. We are continuously in need of members on all of our committees. You can’t have too many people on a volunteer committee.

We cosponsor three different magazines promoting radiant and hydronics, as well as contribute monthly to some of the most popular trade magazines on the market. We are attending numerous trade shows this year providing educational seminars to organizations with a potential vested interest in utilizing the resources we have to offer. We offer a once a month free internet based educational opportunity for our members on various topics of interest to our members

We have welcomed an adhoc commercial hydronics group (R-718 Group) into our organization, and are formulating a marketing plan to get hydronics the respect it deserves due to its extremely high efficiency and comfort factors. Hydronics has lost a lot of territory over the years to new and emerging technologies, like indirect gas fired roof top units, Variable Refrigerant Flow systems, PTACS and the like, and this group is dedicated to developing a direct marketing plan to gain the attention of the people who are developing new commercial/industrial/institutional buildings and let them know about our inherent, proven efficiencies and comfort compared to the competition.

Our HIA group is in the initial stages of developing a marketing program to attract residential radiant work similar to the Beautiful Heat campaign that has been developed and instituted in Canada, only better… And the future looks bright and profitable for all of our members.

As you can see, we have been extremely busy behind the scenes, and we are now prepared to receive new and returning members into our organization. This is crucial, because we need YOUR input to help develop YOUR association. We need experienced members from all walks of life to participate in an upcoming “focus group”, where we will be asking questions about the future direction of this organization, as well as needing input and guidance for the certification program, development of the best practices manuals, and the Instructional Training Manual.

We are continually looking for ways to further the promotion and use of hydronic heating, cooling and radiant cooling systems in our efforts to fulfill our mission and purpose statement which is as follows:

The Radiant Professionals Alliance is established for the purpose of providing superior leadership and fostering the awareness of innovative technology through comprehensive educational activities, products, codes and standards, and public awareness initiatives.

In addition, it is RPA’s mission to serve as a clearinghouse of experience, ideas, and information to further the objectives and sustain interest on behalf of the RPA membership.

RPA accepts responsibility to:

• Identify critical issues of importance based on identified member needs and based on driving forces affecting the industries represented by the RPA

• Pursue and advance the common interests of person engaged in the radiant and hydronic heating and cooling industries

• Encourage the voluntary interchange among members of experience, ideas, and information with regard to the radiant and hydronic heating and cooling industry

• Promote the interests of the Radiant Professionals Alliance Members

What’s missing from this whole picture is YOU. We need YOU to join our organizations and get behind us and help push this organization forward.

Thank you for your attention, and thank you for your membership.

And a special thank you to Eric Aune and John Mesenbrink of Mechanical Hub for giving me the space to provide this information. Here’s to a fantastic and productive 2014 and beyond. Join us, won’t you!

Mark Eatherton

Executive Director, Radiant Professionals Alliance


Phone:  877-427-6601  extension 3001

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