Energy Audit: Save Money and the Earth

Heat LossSaving money on your utility bills could be as simple as getting a qualified company to come in and do an energy audit of your home.  If your home was built before 1985, you could stand to save a significant amount of money!  The older a home is, the more likely it is that you would benefit from an energy audit.

Before 1950, insulation was not always put into the walls of a home.  An audit would find a problem like that, as well as others.  Sometimes insulation inside of walls can settle over time, or there may not be enough of it.  Drafts felt in a home could also indicate that there’s not enough insulation, or simply that there are air leaks that need to be sealed correctly.  Certain styles of homes are more prone to energy loss in certain areas.  Cape Cods, tri-level homes and homes built with living space over the garage are examples of a few designs that are less energy efficient than others, but every home is different.  If your Energy Starenergy bills are high, it’s best to have an audit done to find out why.  Your local utility company or the federal Energy Star program may even offer discounts on the improvements that are recommended to you by the auditor!  You can get more information on the Energy Star program by clicking here.

A complete and proper energy audit should take about three hours to complete.  A qualified auditor will use tools to help with the audit to make it more accurate.  For instance, an infrared camera measures the temperature of the walls to Escaping Moneydetermine if there’s any missing insulation.  Qualified energy auditors will also have been trained in building science and have gotten certified by the Building Performance Institute (BPI) or RESNET, the Residential Energy Services Network.  Banker Insulation has many qualified technicians who can perform energy audits.  For more information or to make an appointment to have an audit done on your home, call Banker Insulation at (602) 273-1261.

 

If you would like to read the original article that inspired this blog post, click here.

Insulate Your Garage Before Summer Heats Up

Your garage can be one cause of higher than normal energy bills during the hot summer months.  Cooled air can leak out of your garage door allowing hot air to build up in the garage, which will then warm up your home and cause your air conditioning system to work harder.  There are a few things you can do to help keep your garage cooler, which will help keep your energy bills down.

Spray Foam Application

One of the easiest ways that you can save money on your energy bill is to have your garage door insulated.  This should be done by qualified insulation professionals such as the ones at Banker Insulation.  The extra weight of the insulation can cause the garage door opener to malfunction if it is not installed properly.  Another way to keep your energy bills lower is by insulating the walls and ceiling of your garage.

One more way to help keep your garage cool is to have a ventilated garage door installed.  This will help keep air flowing through your garage to prevent hot air from building up inside.  You can also install a ventilation fan that will help keep the air moving as well.

Garages Choose a light colored garage door, or paint your existing door a lighter color such as beige or white.  Dark colored doors absorb the heat from the sun and heat them up which causes the garage to heat up!  Before painting your garage door you can caulk any visible gaps between the garage door and the garage frame with silicone caulk.  When you do this, be careful not to apply the caulk to any of the door’s moving parts!  Also, Banker Insulation can install weather stripping along the bottom of the door to keep the heat out and your garage cool.   If you have any questions about ways you can improve your garage’s insulation and lower your energy bills give Banker Insulation a call at (602) 273-1261 or visit them on the web, here.

Advantages of Cellulose Insulation

NewspapersCellulose is one of the oldest types of insulating material in use today. Some examples of cellulose based insulators are, cotton, straw, corncob and newspaper. There are four major types of cellulose insulation. They are, dry cellulose, spray cellulose, stabilized cellulose and low dust cellulose. Each type has its own specific uses.  Dry cellulose is mainly used in older homes and is blown into the walls through holes drilled into the walls.  Spray cellulose is used in new construction and is wet when it is applied.  Stabilized cellulose is mainly used in attics and roofs. Low-dust cellulose is used in places where the dust made during installation would cause a problem. It is specially treated to keep the amount of dust to a minimum. There are numerous advantages to using a cellulose based insulation product in your home or building and some of them are listed below:

1. The cellulose insulation used today is made from recycled Think Greennewspapers with a fire retardant added to them.  Because of its recycled newspaper content, cellulose insulation is a green product.

2. Because of the density of cellulose insulation, buildings that are insulated with it are better protected from fire damage.

Cellulose Insulation3. Cellulose insulation makes buildings more energy efficient.  It fills in cracks and spaces where air could pass through, around objects like pipes and wiring, so it will save you money on heating and cooling costs.

4. Cellulose insulation has some soundproofing qualities. It reduces the amount of noise that travels from room to room.

5. There is an additive in cellulose insulation that greatly inhibits the growth of mold.

If you have any questions about cellulose insulation give Banker Insulation a call at

(602) 273-1261, or visit our website by clicking here.

Remedies for Drafty Windows

Old Window

Drafty windows can account for more than 30 percent of an average home’s heating losses no matter how old or new they are!   Sealing air leaks, repairing broken windows and also investing in better insulation can be some solutions you might want to try to fix this problem.

Weatherstripping InstallationAnother possible solution, if your current windows are in good shape, or if you’re renting your home, is installing some storm windows.  “Low-e” or low emissivity windows can increase energy efficiency and indoor comfort at about twenty five percent of the cost of replacing the whole window.   A storm window that is not low-e can still help you save energy and money, but using low-e windows is much more cost effective.  They pay for themselves in an average of two to four years.  They can save you 12-33 percent on your energy bills over the course of a year.  Utility companies may even offer incentives to install them in your home!

The best overall, long term solution to the problem of drafty windows is to install energy Caulking  a Windowefficient replacement windows.  If the cost of this option is too prohibitive for you, don’t fear, there are a few other less costly options you can try.  Caulking and weatherstripping are two of the more inexpensive methods of correcting drafty windows.  Thermal draperies can also be used, but keep in mind that if your windows are drafty, draperies will not correct that issue.

Insulating window panels are one more option.  These are made of anWindow Film insulating material that is encased in a wood or metal frame that attaches to the interior side of the window frame with magnets or Velcro.  These types of panels completely obstruct the view from the windows that they cover.  Another effective option to consider is window film.  While window film does not obstruct your view, it does prohibit you from opening the window until you remove the film.

If you have any questions about how to correct drafty windows in your home, call Banker Insulation at (877) 708-7815, or visit them on the web by clicking here.

 

Sources:

Old Window Photo: (http://bit.ly/1g3CWc4)

Window Film Photo: (http://bit.ly/1aRXzbf)

Weatherstripping Photo: (http://bit.ly/1bSHBMo)

Caulking Photo: (http://bit.ly/1fXcq1G)

Benefits of Spray Foam Insulation

There are many advantages to insulating with spray foam! Some of them are:

• health benefitsSpray Foam Application
• structural benefits
• financial benefits

Spray foam insulation helps eliminate air leaks, which can account for 30% of a home’s annual heating and cooling expenses. This also helps control the growth of mildew and mold, which can cause a multitude of serious health issues, by reducing the amount of water vapor that gets in through air leakage. It improves indoor air quality in much the same way. Less air leakage means less dust and pollen can get in, which is great for people with allergies.

Commercial Spray FoamSpray foam can also add significant structural strength to walls during high winds. It adds resistance to high wind uplift and blow-off in the roof due to its lack of fasteners like nails and screws, and the lack of joints or edges.

Another great benefit of spray foam is noise reduction! It can help reduce airborne noise, which is made by stereos, talking, game systems and televisions. It does this by sealing every crack and crevice that would allow these noises to travel. It also reduces flanking noise, which is when sound travels through spaces along plumbing pipes, electrical outlets, recessed light fixtures and framing connections.

Of course spray foam insulation will also save you money! It allows heating and cooling systems to be much more energy efficient by sealing all of the places where air can travel into or out of buildings. Spray foam insulation can help homeowners qualify for grants and tax credits too!  Take a look at this video that talks about spray foam insulation’s benefits:

If you have any questions contact Banker Insulation at (877) 708-7815 or visit our website for more information!

 

Air Infiltration Solutions In Action

Air infiltration is widely regarded as one of the largest sources of energy loss in residential constructions. The 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) requires much reduced air infiltration rate compared to previous versions. How to choose a wall or building assembly with minimum air infiltration plays a vital role for a particular home to meet IECC, achieve ENERGY STAR Version 3 program requirements, or other energy efficiency programs. This photo illustrates just one of the ways Banker Insulation addresses the air infiltration issue during new construction. For more information please call your Banker Insulation representative. 877.708.7815

Banker Insulation

Owens Corning Advances In Residential Insulation

EnergyComplete SealantOwens Corning leads the market in the advancement of residential insulation with contemporary technological advancements since it became commercialized approximately 75  years ago. The latest residential insulation product to take the stage, the energy-efficient EnergyComplete® Sealant which prolongs their success rate by winning Design Journal’s 2013 ADEX Platinum Award for Design Excellence. This impressive sealant contributes to preserving energy in the home.

The Owens Corning Building Science team conducted a study that identified individual exterior joints where air most likely enters and escapes from homes via vulnerable cracks, seams and gaps which contribute up to 40% of the energy utilized for heating and cooling. This new knowledge is what inspired the design of the formula and equipment used in  residential insulation EnergyComplete® Sealant.

Roofing Insulation – Phoenix, Arizona

Roofing InsulationWhen thinking about a new roof in Phoenix, Az, it’s important to pay special attention to your roofing insulation. Roofing insulation is key in keeping the effects of the elements out and the heating and cooling in. Every roof should be insulated, however there are still plenty of homes that are not, and in turn are costing residents expensive utility bills. In order to keep heating and cooling costs down as well as maintaining a climate resistant home, it’s important to research a variety of roofing insulation options and which is best suited for your home.

Utilizing the appropriate ‘R-value’ insulation is important. R-value is the measure of thermal resistance. For example, a home that is located in an area that remains generally stable most of the year will do fine with a lower r-value insulation. In areas that get excessively hot and sunny, like Phoenix, AZ, roofing insulation with a high r-value is best.

Phoenix Insulation & Summertime

Everyone struggles to find a way to keep cool during the scorching hot summer months in Phoenix, it’s a well known fact for those of us who live here. Believe it or not, just turning down the AC is not the most efficient way to accomplish your goals to stay cool. Here is a simple thing you can do in order to keep your home cooler.

Inspect Your Phoenix Insulation

Phoenix insulation is a key component in keeping cool air from escaping as well as heat from entering into the home. Phoenix insulation is composed of several layers of protection to ensure that the temperature with in your home remains consistent. Inspecting your Phoenix insulation or having a professional to inspect it for you is a pertinent way to prepare your home for the Phoenix heat.

Phoenix Insulation

Phoenix Home Insulation | Insulating Your Attic

When people generally think about Phoenix home insulation, they tend to believe that insulation is designed to keep your home warm rather than keep it cool. In Phoenix, Arizona, where the extreme hot climate is notorious for reaching record breaking temperatures every summer, keeping your home warm is the last thing one thinks of. So many Phoenix, Arizona residents do not realize that properly insulating an attic can and will keep your home cooler.

Phoenix Home InsulationInsulation is designed to prevent air flowing through it. So in warm climates it works by trapping the cool air inside the home. Whereas in cooler climates it traps the warm air inside. It’s important to note that air rises which in turn reveals that insulating an attic is more important in warmer climates. As the cool air circulates within your home and rises to the attic, proper attic insulation will trap the cool air from escaping. This lowers the demand on your air conditioning unit and even lowers the cost of your energy bills.

Having enough Phoenix home insulation in your attic is important as well. Take a look around inside your attic and see if the insulation levels are even or perhaps below the floor joists. If they are, then this is a good indication that you may need more. Banker Insulation has professionals that will come out and make a proper assessment on whether or not you require more insulation in order to save on your energy bill. Call today! 877.708.7815