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20 Questions with Scott & Maureen Harders

Originally published: 09.01.06 by Terry Tanker

Publisher Terry Tanker recently sat down with hvacr customers Scott and Maureen Harders to discuss a new addition that doubled the size of their home, renovation challenges, hvacr contractors, and hvacr concerns associated with the project. The Harders live in the Northeast United States.


1. Where did you two meet?

We met in college at the University of Notre Dame.

2. You both joined the Navy after college. How was the experience?
It was an honor and a privilege. Scott flew in the E2 Hawkeye and was stationed in San Diego but was at sea much of the time aboard the USS Constellation and USS Independence. I was part of a surgical team and spent time in Okinawa aboard the USS Kittyhawk.

3. So, when ND plays Navy, what side of the stadium are you on?
Notre Dame.

4. Maureen you’re an anesthesiologist?
Yes, and Scott is an attorney.

5. You recently doubled the size of your home with an addition. What was that process like?
It was difficult because of scope of the project, and we lived in the house from start to finish. We love the

neighborhood and didn’t want to move. We have four boys, and we needed more room.

6. How did you find the hvacr contractor?
We didn’t. Our general contractor hired the hvacr contractor.

7. Did you know what kind of system you wanted?
Initially, we considered a radiant floor system, but like most construction projects, we went way over budget. That’s when our general contractor gave us other options that he thought would make us just as comfortable but that worked within our budget.

8. Did they?
No. We never really sat down to discuss the system itself, and what we needed and expected the system to provide. It was always part of a larger discussion for work being performed that week or that month. If we had to do it over again, we would have dealt with the hvacr contractor on a one-to-one basis.

9. How was the new system performing?
Not very well. There were some noticeable temperature differences within the house.

10. What did your contractors say was causing the problem?
This was just one of many challenges we had with the overall project. We don’t want to say it was the project from hell, so let’s just say it was a learning experience.

11. How have you resolved the hvacr problems?
We hired another hvacr contractor.

12. How many did you interview?
We interviewed three. The first we never heard from again, the second we didn’t trust, and the last one got the job. They were responsive, asked us lots of questions, and gave us some options to pick from.

13. For example?
We recently found out one of our boys has asthma. We needed to eliminate as much dust and mold in the house as possible. They showed us electronic air filters that do a great job improving the indoor air quality.

14. What else?
They suggested cleaning the ductwork. Half of the house is 60 years old, and the other half is new but was subjected to dust during the construction process.

15. What was the largest problem?
Getting the system to maintain a comfortable temperature on both the main floor and the sleeping floor upstairs.

16. What was recommended?
Zoning and programmable controls.

17. How is the temperature differential now?
Much better. Only when outside temperatures are extreme do we notice a slight difference.

18. Do you have a maintenance agreement?
Yes. Our new contractor recommended it to us, and we thought it made a lot of sense.

19. Is the construction process complete?
We’re having a large deck added to the back of the house, and then we’re done, I hope.

20. Go Irish?
Go Irish!!!

We would like to hear from you. Send your comments or questions to us atletters@hvacrbusiness.com.

Terry has over 23 years of experience in the advertising and publishing industries. He began his career with a business-to-business advertising agency. Prior to forming Hutchinson Tanker Ltd. and HVACR Business in January 2006, he spent 20 years with large national publishing and media firm where he was the publisher of several titles in the mechanical systems marketplace. 

In addition to his experience in advertising and publishing, Terry has worked closely with numerous industry-related associations over the years including AHRI, AMCA, and ABMA. He has also served on the Board of Directors for the American Boiler Manufactures Association (ABMA) and as chairman, for both the Associates Committee and the Marketing Communications Committee of ABMA.


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