Over the years, my dad had set up lots of different businesses.
Unlike other owners, he liked being hands-on.
He’d work side by side with the staff to learn more about various issues at the establishments. His best success was supermarkets. He had 6 in different parts of the country. Being hands-on meant he traveled a lot to check out the operations, and I went with him. At one of the stores, he had lots of work done on the air conditioning unit. It was the largest and needed a robust central HVAC to keep it cool during summer and warm in winter. Unlike other ACs, a supermarket heating and cooling unit had distinct features. At the door, we needed to set up the air curtains system. It would deliver a blast of air to all customers entering on a hot summer day. In winter, the same unit would provide warm air. The air curtain had a blower fan inside driven by a small electric motor. Next was the supermarket’s central air ventilation unit that served the whole setup. It was more extensive and required ample time to install and do all the ductwork. My dad preferred to use the rooftop units that had everything the central AC needed. These rooftop units had a large fan that would drag fresh air from the surrounding into the supermarket. Once the air reached the HVAC system, it went through the air filter. Here all the dirt and dust would remain behind while clean air goes into the building. The next part is heating the air using a heat pump or pushing it through a cooling unit. The HVAC operator had to determine the proper action depending on the season. That was crucial information because I wanted to study HVAC systems in college and set up an AC company afterward.