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Electronic Manufacturing Services Provider

Home Comfort Zones Finds Ideal Manufacturing Partner in ControlTek


In 2004, Home Comfort Zones (HCZ) approached ControlTek with an exciting challenge. HCZ had designed MyTemp, a completely unique HVAC temperature control product, and needed a manufacturing partner with extensive capabilities. MyTemp has three core systems that work together to regulate building temperature room-by-room. When looking for manufacturing expertise, HCZ found many vendors with single capabilities like Printed Circuit Board Assembly (PCBA), box build, or cabling. Few had all the capabilities required to manufacture all three core MyTemp systems. MyTemp customers expect a high quality product with a very low return rate. A demanding customer base like this required a manufacturing partner with extensive in-house test capabilities. Most of all, HCZ needed help turning a pioneering design into a successful product while addressing the design, manufacturing, supply chain, and quality challenges that accompany a completely original product idea. After HCZ selected ControlTek to manufacture the MyTemp, ControlTek brought to bear multiple in-house disciplines to solve the projects particular challenges.

Background

Founded in 2002 in Oregon, Home Comfort Zones (HCZ) is a pioneering energy management company that creates premium temperature control and energysaving systems. HCZs MyTemp and Emme products dramatically increase comfort and significantly reduce energy cost for homes and businesses. The MyTemp and Emme products both presented significant design, manufacturing, and supply chain challenges. By working with ControlTek, HCZ was able to bring these products to market with less lead-time and upfront investment than alternatives.

Design Expertise and Integrated Manufacturing


ControlTek worked with HCZ to optimize the MyTemp product design, improving manufacturability and reducing cost. By providing design, PCBA, box build, cabling, and test services under one roof, ControlTek created an integrated manufacturing process that lowered overall cost and simplified HCZs management role.

HCZs MyTemp Increases Comfort and Reduces Energy Costs Up to 40%


HCZs MyTemp helps homeowners and businesses reduce heating and cooling costs by up to 40% and dramatically increase comfort levels in every room, even with existing HVAC systems. MyTemp uses wireless sensors, easily installed pneumatic dampers, and a central touch interface computer control to precisely regulate the temperature of every room in a house. Because MyTemp independently controls the temperature for individual rooms, energy can be used more efficiently to condition occupied rooms, and minimize energy spent on unoccupied rooms. MyTemp users report significant increases in comfort; drastically reduced hot spots, cold spots, and temperature fluctuations between levels, and reduced energy expenditures.

Supply Chain Design


ControlTek used their deep supply chain management experience to source and maintain quality on multiple custom parts required for MyTemp, including overseas suppliers. Experienced ControlTek program managers work directly with both customers and suppliers, enabling more agile supply chain management. By combining overseas on-site QA liaisons and long-term supplier relationships, ControlTek provides a compelling combination of quality, flexibility, and price to customers like HCZ.

The Results

Working with ControlTek allowed HCZ to focus on product concept, sales, and marketing in a way they couldnt have otherwise done. This partnership, combined with ControlTeks ability to execute an integrated manufacturing plan, resulted in: HCZ thriving in a very difficult market 50% lower product cost Faster time to market Extremely high customer satisfaction

Rigorous Testing
After consulting with HCZ to design a testing program that balanced quality and cost, ControlTek provided wireless functionality testing, burn-in testing, and PCB testing for MyTemp. This rigorous testing provided both manufacturing process improvement feedback and product quality assurance. The close relationship between ControlTek and HCZ is a partnership that allows HCZ to stay ahead of the competition by focusing on product R&D, sales, and distribution issues. According to David Alles, CEO of HCZ, the most important thing about our relationship with ControlTek is the ability to work with them as a partner in our manufacturing process. Alles said, ControlTek used their understanding of design for manufacturability to help us optimize our product design, which helped us reduce the product cost by over 50%. In addition, ControlTeks agile supply-chain management enabled HCZ to bring a new product to market despite potential disruptions like custom part quality issues and supplier turnover.

Ongoing Partnership and Expanded Product Lines


Partnering with ControlTek has enabled HCZ to expand its product line. The MyTemp product has been successful in a challenging market. In fact, HCZ has expanded their offering with the Energy and Environmental Management System (Emme), which combines advanced environmental controls and detailed energy monitoring into a single product. As Alles puts it, Weve been so pleased with how ControlTek handled the MyTemp project that were using even more of their design capabilities for the Emme product.

www.homecomfortzones.com

Home Comfort Zones

3905 NE 112th Avenue Vancouver, Washington 98682 TF: (866) 818 - 9855 | Vancouver: (360) 896 - 9375 | Portland: (503) 242 - 3526 www.controltek.com