“Heads Up”

Quarterly Newsletter: July 2022

A quarterly newsletter from R.M. Headlee for the purpose of customer and principal communications, sharing best application methods, product features and benefits and doing what it takes to achieve complete customer satisfaction.

Latest News


Recently, RM Headlee was contacted by a major Plumbing contractor from Buffalo, NY concerning sewage and stormwater backup issues in the city. This contact actually resulted from a GBEC show we attended and had a booth at earlier in the year.

We were approached by a municipal engineering manager who saw a Tide-Flex check valve on our table and after much “Problem/Solution discussion” decided to move forward with expected installation early fall of this year.

While visiting the site we learned from the plumbing contractor of another issue concerning a large public swimming pool that could not open due to a control valve problem.

The City (not to mention all those that use the pool) was upset, but the real kicker was the original replacement control valve had a delivery lead time of over 20 weeks.

RM Headlee set up a second site visit with our TM Jesse Smith from A-T Controls who happened to be working with us that week. We quickly determined lack of name plate information, no idea of control signal or motor power requirement or if position feedback was required.

But not to worry, my little butterfly!  Solid experience shows up with a model 797 Fluke meter – all is able to be figured out. Inside of 20 minutes, RM Headlee and A-T Controls was able to ascertain all the technical need-to-know application information, and offer a complete replacement valve/actuator package quote with RM Headlee receiving the order the very next day.

The real good news is we will ship in less than one week allowing the pool to open for the kids. It’s nice when you can be part of helping the general public… especially in your own backyard!

Application Guidelines

When I first cut my teeth as an outside salesman in Cincinnati, OH, I called on an account located in Connersville, IN by the name of Dresser Roots.

“D.R.” made positive displacement Industrial blowers for many applications such as Vacuum trucks for excavating soil-cleaning carpets, pressure swing absorption for low purity Oxygen, pneumatic material handling on the positive pressure side to move plastic beads, grain-fertilizer, etc.

There was a purchasing manager by the name of Burt Jones that I became close with, with over 40 years of experience and me being new to the sales game I asked him a question: “Mr. Jones… what do you look for on those calling on you?”

He sat back in his chair and said “It’s simple. I look for and expect you to help me save money and keep me out of trouble.”

Driving home later that afternoon it occurred to me that those two comments spoke volumes. Keeping him out of trouble really meant anything that was sold to him darn well better meet the specification or application requested.

We have discussed the importance of correct application of the products we represent and solicit to our customers and between having thorough product knowledge and experience we do our best to make sure the equipment we supply functions as expected, works as advertised in a safe manner. No shortcuts or exceptions.

Consider Adding To Your Selling Skillset 


  • Provide the manufacturers product specification along with your quote.
  • Offer complete and full technical descriptions of the equipment being quoted along with clients’ requirements.
  • Put the client’s required application in the body of your quote. Assume nothing. Get everything in writing. If unsure ask the factories expert for an opinion/authorization.
  • Keep all notes-emails organized and filed for easy reference.
  • Follow-up after installation asking if performance is okay. File this correspondence as well.

Technically Speaking

RM Headlee was awarded ASC (AUMA SERVICE CENTER ) status about 15 months back. Being an ASC allows RM Headlee to better support Auma installations in our territory helping customers when problems arise, help to commission new installs, provide factory original parts fast with the ultimate goal of complete customer satisfaction.

It involves much effort with respect to  training, cost, inventory and equipment testing but once problems are identified, root cause is determined and the issue solved (which can entail re-programming, new parts, control adjustments) we then can feel good about this product offering many years of solid function helping plants-factories to operate like designed.

Last week, we completed the Advanced ASC training at the Auma factory located in Canonsburg, PA. The three-day exercise involved complete take down and re-build of both the AM and AC style units.

We learned how to re-configure the AC style using an SD card. We replaced board stacks, MWG assy’s, contactors, fuses, control boards, motors, gears, plug and socket pin checks, and how to make accurate repairs so electrical contact is assured.

The most difficult part of this three-day training took place at the South Pointe Country Club over 18 uneven, “ball roles off the green/ball is 24” above your feet/fairway bounces a well-struck drive into the woods or water” holes of golf.

My goodness, can’t wait to play there again!

Final Comments

RM Headlee is throwing an open house to celebrate 50 years in business on Thursday, Sept. 8th. (Actually, Covid got in our way so this timeline is 51 years in business)

What an incredible milestone and a tribute to Richard M Headlee, our founder and original owner!

Founded in 1971, Mr. Headlee believed in helping customers with competent application engineering with high-quality products. His most important asset was his employees who followed the TEAM company motto of: “Together Everyone Achieves More.”

Over time, customers wanted and asked for value add on the valve products, actuators and controls. This request, along with business growth, resulted in moving to a larger facility.

Gary Lauchert – with 35 plus years with RM Headlee – has been the owner for the past several years. With over a million dollars of inventory and the ability to lift and move heavy industrial equipment, we have been building complete valve & actuator packages meeting customer requirements. We have invited over 200 customers for the open house, which will begin at noon.

This September 8th date also coincides with the Buffalo Bills 1st game of the season, which is out of town against the Rams, last year’s super bowl champion. GO BILLS!

Gary Beckett, VP Business Development