I maintain my HVAC (heating, venting, and air conditioning) equipment in as good an operating condition as I possibly can, but that doesn't stop thermo-wars: people sitting next to each other where one is wrapped in a sweater and the other person is fanning himself because of the heat. I use a laser thermometer in these thermo-wars. Actually, my main weapon is education and the laser thermometer is a tool in the education process.
The laser thermometer looks like a small gun that shoots a laser beam. Within a few seconds after pulling the trigger, the device displays the temperature of what the beam. The closer the laser thermometer is to the target, the more accurate the reading because longer "throws" allow for more dispersal of the feedback to the sensor. I use this device in several ways:
- When staff or members tell me something is wrong, I get a laser thermometer reading and show it to the person.
- If the temp is off, I thank the person and begin working on the problem. That lets the person know I'm not ignoring them. That makes for good public relations with parishioners.
- If the temp is fine, I show the screen to the person. Sometimes people trust technology more than other people and the laser thermometer can help convince them that the temperature is "normal."
- I've also bought several laser thermometers for various staff persons. This empowers them to check the temp themselves. Then they can decide whether or not to call me. Giving laser thermometers to others has cut down on the number of "false alarm" calls to me.
- When I do call my HVAC company to report a problem, I can tell them what the real temp is rather than give a vague response about what the temp is. It helps me to have better communications with the HVAC technician and so my relationship with him is improved.
As I said, it is a neat "toy" but it really does help members see what the real temp is and helps me respond to the members and to the HVAC company. The laser thermometer helps members know the real temp; but the real savings is in controlling the temperature in the building.