Drain Pans - A New Market?
Until now, most HVACR (and water heater) secondary drain pans have been items that were purchased from sheet-metal contractors, who fabricated them from scratch. And although some supply houses have tried to stock them in the past, they are usually bulky items with a slow turnover rate, so most do not and would rather not stock this type of product.
However, with the recent developments and improvements in the field of plastics, some new types of secondary drain pans have become available; so I urge you to take another look. If you are thinking about increasing your sales by expanding your product lines, you might consider carrying some of these products that are made from the new super-strong and flexible DexElar plastic. Why?
1. Because they fit together tightly in stacks (but can be easily separated), so they take up much less of your floor space.
2. They are FLEXIBLE.
3. They don’t rust.
4. They last much longer and hold their shape better than sheet-metal drain pans.
5. They don’t cost any more than metal pans.
So why would contractors prefer to stop buying the metal pans and start buying the DexElar types from your company? Because these secondary drain pans can be folded without cracking or deforming the plastic. As a result, contractors can get them through tight spaces, such as small attic accesses!
I know you’ve probably tried selling some of the old plastic secondary drain pans in the past without much success because they couldn’t be folded or stepped on without cracking them. However, the new plastics are much better, and self-extinguishing (less flammable).
Consider the fact that on any residential HVAC retrofit job, the old, rusting metal pans are often left in place, simply because contractors can’t get the new ones in (but they would like to). And what is nice about the plastic pans is that some come with molded-in water-sensing switches, so they can never be installed wrong - and no time is wasted installing them.
One of the misconceptions some people might have regarding plastic drain pans is thinking that they are flimsy. I saw some of these DexElar plastic pans being demonstrated at last year’s AHR Expo (a big guy was jumping up and down on them to prove their durability) and I was impressed.
But what HVACR supply house managers and owners really need to consider is that they sell many condensate-water sensors every year (look at your sales sheets), and almost each one should have been purchased along with a new secondary drain pan. These are currently being bought from someone else, so you are missing valuable sales.
Of course, just stocking secondary drain pans isn’t going to sell them. You’ll have to reserve a little extra space on the floor of your store for a while, to show your customers that something better is now available. And after everyone has considered and tried them out, they will become another item that your customers simply come in and ask for.