September 2004
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On-Line HVAC Specification Tool Celebrates First Anniversary

CtrlSpecBuilder™ hits continue to climb

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ATLANTA  - This month marked the one year anniversary of CtrlSpecBuilder, the website providing HVAC engineers with a productivity tool to prepare specifications quickly and accurately. The website, www.ctrlspecbuilder.com, is a free tool that prepares non-proprietary, custom specifications and follows ASHRAE Guideline 13-2000, Specifying Direct Digital Control Systems, as well as CSI MasterFormat for section 15900. 

CtrlSpecBuilder prepares specifications in a fraction of the time previously required, and eliminates the omitted or conflicting text common to specifications created by “cut & paste.”  This tool also generates point lists and sequences of control for all HVAC equipment in the project, and can provide specifications in U.S. or metric units.   CtrlSpecBuilder makes it simple to specify new technology, like BACnet, web-based controls, and advanced energy savings options.  By reducing errors and preparing detailed specifications, the program also reduces change orders and cost overruns.

Since its launch on August 8, 2003, CtrlSpecBuilder has recorded more than 13,000 unique visits, from over 50 countries.  The site has more than 1,500 registered users and has been used to create at least 9,000 new control specifications.  Some of the more popular specification options include BACnet communications (selected for 92% of the specifications), and web-based control systems (selected for 88% of the specifications).

The site has been a great success with users freely expressing their gratitude. Over the past year the CtrlSpecBuilder site received nearly 400 feedback comments.  Most are requests to add new equipment options, change boilerplate text, etc., but some just write to say how much they like the program.  Some examples of the positive feedback received:

"I really like your control specification program.  I wondered when someone would create a user-friendly version of a controls program.”

Great Site!  Wish I had known about this before my last project.”

“I want to complement you on an excellent and useful tool.  As a designer this allows preparation of a quality spec without the typical rush to get a local vendor to cut and paste a spec together.”

 “This is the greatest thing I’ve used for spec building since the invention of the computer!”

In an effort to further enhance the user experience, in the next few months a major redevelopment of the equipment database and support tools used to develop CtrlSpecBuilder is planned.  End users will see a significant increase in the equipment control options as well as overall speed of the site.

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