At a Glance
Heating and air-conditioning
It isn’t every day that a company finds the opportunity to use its specific expertise to help out an individual member of its community. But when Extreme Makeover: Home Edition came knocking with the story of Carl Hall—a former All-American baseball player with no insurance who’d become a paraplegic after a terrible car accident—Fenix Heating & Cooling of Wichita, Kansas, stepped up to the plate. Co-owner Jeff Becker and his partners were moved by Hall’s plight, and they knew they had to help out.
“It was a very well-deserving family,” Becker says. “The whole area here in Wichita really stepped up and supported him. We donated over half of the labor. Our employees donated their time on the weekend, and we donated their time during the weekdays. Several of our former employees, who had not worked for us for many years, volunteered to help out as well.”
Top 5 HVAC Products Used by Fenix
1. Lennox Model XC17 high-efficiency air-conditioners are the most efficient—and the quietest—single-stage units on the market.
2. Lennox L-Series rooftop air-conditioners are the most reliable and “easiest to work on” rooftop units out there. They are particularly popular with business- and commercial-property owners.
3. Lennox i-Comfort thermostats, introduced this year, offer a user-friendly system that communicates with Lennox’s high-end HVAC systems, providing self-diagnostics and troubleshooting.
4. Mitsubishi ductless air-conditioners are the quietest and most reliable ductless units in the United States.
5. The Lennox PureAire home-filtration system provides more than just particulate filtration; it also removes gasses, odors, and chemicals from the air.
Fenix Heating & Cooling managed all of the heating and air for the new house after Lennox and Mitsubishi donated the necessary HVAC equipment and Wichita Sheet Metal donated sheet metal. During the process, Becker discovered that his daughter was a close friend of Hall’s son, which made the project hit even closer to home. And when all was said and done and the television program was set to air nationally, the company decided to sponsor a one-hour special about the project to air locally before the show’s debut.
This sense of hometown loyalty is one of the core values of Fenix Heating & Cooling. The company was formed 23 years ago, with Becker joining on as a service manager after working for his father and uncle in another Lennox dealership for many years. The company grew from a small start-up to become the region’s leading HVAC supplier, providing and installing heating, air-conditioning, indoor-air-quality systems, fireplaces, and stoves to residential and commercial property owners within a 60-mile radius of Wichita. Two years ago, Becker and colleagues Cory Curl and Luke Parthemer bought out two of the original three owners. They’re now partners with Bob Prigmore, the last of the company’s founders.
“Our company is built on the principles of quality and customer service, and that’s what we’re known for,” Becker says. “Whatever you can do to help a customer is what you need to do. We go the extra step to make sure the customer is taken care of.”
Becker and his partners have a policy of open communication with their customers and employees to attract and maintain business. “We try to be informative to the consumers so we can understand their needs and they can understand how we can fulfill those needs,” he says, adding that the firm’s best advertising comes from word of mouth in the community. “The reputation we’ve been building seems to pay off.”
The company currently has more than 800 service-plan customers that it works with, including Family Video Buildings, who contacted Fenix several years ago to install and provide service for heating and air-conditioning at 10 new locations around Wichita. As business continues to grow, Fenix hopes to remain the area’s top contractor. “We actually strive to be one of the top contractors in the whole Midwest,” Becker says, adding that he also wants to be the top Lennox dealer in the region. Meeting these goals shouldn’t take more than staying on the course he and his partners have already established. ABQ