AHR’s must-read 2024 Trend Report on the future of the HVACR industry cites associations, manufacturers, engineers and others

By Eileen McMorrow, editor-in-chief at The McMorrow Reports & FMLink — January 9, 2024 — AHR Expo has created the 2024 Trend Report to provide a connection point for industry professionals from many different sectors and career disciplines. Considering the segments, AHR wanted to identify the state of the industry ahead of the AHR Expo with viewpoints from the industry associations, from manufacturers on the show floor, and from the field of attendees of the show.

AHR 2024 Trend Report

AHR Expo’s endorsing associations contribute a thorough representation of the varying roles that make up the full industry. The report includes summary takeaways and common industry themes:

  • Regulations remain a driving force towards a cleaner future: Decarbonization • Green transition • New standards with quicker onboarding • Global refrigerant transition
  • The built environment is evolving:  IoT, AI and controls • Automation • Data analytics • Cybersecurity and BA systems
  • Supply Chain: Supply Chain has rebounded to stable health • A2Ls and the effect on distribution • Consolidation across the industry
  • Workforce and training: The need for a strong and skilled workforce • Streamline the flow of communication across the chain • Training evolution
  • Product Adoption: Heat pumps • Building automation systems
  • Expansion, growth and meeting demand: Managing multiple areas of growth within the industry • Educating first the workforce, and secondly the end user • Cutting-edge technology and environmental responsibility.

Points of view are provided from the following industry associations:

  • AHRI * ASHRAE * ASHB * BACnet International * HARDI * HVAC Excellence * IAPMO/RPA * PHCC * RSES.

“The global refrigerant transition, led by the United States, is well underway, and will prove to be a seamless transition when all is said and done. Decarbonization has highlighted our industry as a solution to emission and energy use reductions,” says Stephen Yurek, president and CEO, AHRI, in regard to manufacturing trends.

Looking at the current state of HVACR, Ginger Scoggins, president, ASHRAE, says, “As the urgency of building decarbonization and the impact of climate change continue to drive change, the HVACR industry stands at the forefront of efforts to develop efficient, sustainable built environment solutions.”

Scoggins predicts major industry shifts: The HVACR industry has undergone transformative shifts, marked by a departure from conventional practices towards a future defined by innovation and sustainability. One of the most significant shifts is the industry’s pivot towards energy-efficient solutions in response to the escalating climate crisis. Another notable change is the growing emphasis on IAQ and occupant well-being, highlighting a broader recognition of the critical link between HVACR systems and human health.

On the same front, “Building Automation Control Systems are driving increased functionality, efficiency and cybersecurity in the industry. They are no longer something that can be deferred, because to ‘Future Proof’ a building it must first be ‘Now Proof’,” quips Andy McMillan, president and managing director, BACnet.

To review the perspectives of all industry associations, download the AHR 2024 Trend Report.