Note: pme presents its annual top products, literature and software based on reader response to the twice-monthly pme eNewsletter (to sign up, visit Once again, this year’s list has a distinct green feel to it.


2012 Top Product Winner
Mechanical Engineering Formulas Pocket Guide
This portable find-it-now reference contains thousands of indispensable formulas mechanical engineers need for day-to-day practice. It's all here in one compact resource, everything from HVAC to stress and vibration equations, measuring fatigue, bearings, gear design, simple mechanics and more.

No. 2 Plumbing Quick Check: Extreme Duty Edition 
Take the mystery out of the mathematical calculations that are so critical for a successful career in plumbing with this one-of-a-kind resource for anyone working in the plumbing industry. “DeWALT Plumbing Quick Check: Extreme Duty Edition” gathers the most commonly used mathematical formulas, simplifies them and compiles them in this sturdy, durable, easy-to-reference guide.

No. 3 Installation diagram
This guide to heating system success now includes more labor-saving products. The Webstone reference diagram depicts proper plumbing of systems and illustrates how to avoid nearly 160 leak paths and save nearly 24 hours off the installation of any complete hydronic installation.
Webstone Valves.

No. 4 Geothermal hydronics book
Caleffi's 9th edition of “idronics: Geo-Hydronic Systems” explains the basics of heat pump operation and describes several types of heat pumps. The discussion then turns to the use of modern hydronics to enhance the efficiency and comfort provided by these heat pumps. Other discussion topics include: system configurations ranging from simple single-zone/heating-only systems to large multi-heat pump heating and cooling systems. Also provided is specific information on sizing components such as buffer tanks, expansion tanks and circulators.

No. 5 Heat Pump Manual
The Esco Institute’s “Heat Pumps: Operation-Installation-Service” is a manual to provide a thorough understanding of heat pump theory, installation procedures, service techniques and troubleshooting methods.Topics covered include: basic principles of heat pump operation; system components; air flow; defrost methods; balance point; secondary heat; electrical control wiring; refrigerant piping; system installation; refrigerant evacuation and charging; preventive maintenance; troubleshooting; dual fuel systems; and geothermal systems.

No. 6 Preassembled radiant system
Uponor's Radiant Ready 30E from Uponor is a complete radiant mechanical room designed in a compact, preassembled, easy-to-install panel. The system includes a 30,000 Btu/hr. electric boiler, an Uponor engineered plastic heating manifold, a pump, expansion tank, pressure-relief valve, isolation valves, thermostat and air vent - all preassembled and prewired into the unit. The Radiant Ready 30E covers up to 2,000 sq.-ft. of radiant floor heating and comes standard with a five-loop manifold.

No. 7 Tankless water heater
Navien’s new NPE Series premium gas condensing tankless water heater features advanced technology that revolutionizes installation and helps increase profitability. The new NPE Series greatly reduces time and labor for a typical tankless retrofit by utilizing existing gas lines and existing flue chases. Features of the NPE series include: 2” PVC venting up to 60’; 1/2” gas lines up to 24’; ComfortFlow technology; buffer tank and recirculation pump included; field convertibility from natural gas to liquid propane gas; cascading-capable; dual stainless-steel heat exchangers; ultra-condensing efficiency; and ultra-low NOx emissions.

No. 8 Water piping system
Aquatherm Lilac, developed exclusively for applications such as toilet/drain water, rainwater collection, laundry/cleaning, irrigation and similar uses, serves up a durable and corrosion-resistant polypropylene material that is extremely easy to design and install. This fully recyclable, environmentally friendly alternative to plastic and metal piping is installed without the use of any toxic materials, glues and resins, or open flames. Lilac uses a simple heat fusion connection to create seamless connections that when properly executed last a lifetime, while eliminating worries about cost (and theft) of copper and other metals.

No. 9 Hand sink-compatible water heater
Advance Tabco’s instant hot water heater is compatible with its full line of hand sinks. The 7-PS-92 heater runs on 120v power (220-240v via special order) and boosts cold water up to 42° F. This allows hand sinks to install in remote areas with just a cold water supply and available 30-amp electrical power. There is no delay or wasted water while waiting for hot water to reach the faucet.
Advance Tabco.

No. 10 Pump selection program
Bell & Gossett’s updated ESP-PLUS online pump selection program features a more comprehensive, user-friendly Web-based selection tool and improved visuals. Targeted to engineers, consultants, designers and end users, the ESP-PLUS features include: accurate three-curve algorithms; new icons with tool tips to help users navigate the program; flow, head, pump seed and pump-type calculations; Metric (SI) and English units of measure; multiple motor selection methods; series pump selection and graphing; links to 2D and 3D CAD drawings, including Revit format; variable-speed operation calculations; pump accessory sizing for Triple Duty valves and suction diffusers; and system modeling with life-cycle costing.
Bell & Gossett.

No. 11 Indirect-fired water heater
Weil-McLain’s AHRI-certified Aqua Plus indirect-fired water heater is easy to install and operate, saving time and money with standard features that include thermostat connections already installed for quick and easy wiring, and temperature and pressure-relief valves. Other features include a stainless-steel tank and coil design, superior first-hour ratings and a magnesium anode rod for protection against corrosive water conditions. Available in five sizes to suit any application, the water heater comes with a lifetime limited warranty.

No. 12 Geothermal heat pumps
ClimateMaster announces its efficiency breakthrough in the Trilogy 40 series, which is the first series of geothermal heat pumps certified by AHRI to exceed 40 EER at ground-loop conditions. The Trilogy 40 utilizes variable-speed technology to provide an extremely wide range of heating and cooling capacities with the ability to perfectly match loads to as low as 30% of maximum.