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Monday, June 26, 2017
Why Indoor Air Quality Matters and How to Improve It.

Why Indoor Air Quality Matters and How to Improve It.

Did you know that the air inside your home may have the biggest impact on your health? When we think of air quality, we most often think of outdoor air. Indoor air may have an even bigger impact. One estimate indicates the average person receives 72 percent of their chemical exposure at home (via The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency/USEPA).

Many things can affect indoor air quality. This can include the materials used in furniture manufacturing, building products in your home, the items you use for home cleaning, and more. Here are some ways you can improve you home’s air quality:

Air sealing – keeping out external pollutants helps maintain your home’s indoor environment. When external pollutants are kept out, your indoor air can be properly tested and maintained. Spray foam insulation effectively seals air leaks and insulates in one step.

Choose low-emitting cleaning products – look for cleaning products, air fresheners, etc. that are made with natural ingredients or are low-emitting products. This will remove/reduce one factor that impacts indoor air quality.

Ventilate your home – After your home is air sealed, having a proper mechanical ventilation system will help remove indoor air pollutants.

Contact our office to learn about how spray foam insulation can help keep out external pollutants, help maintain your home’s indoor air quality, and help reduce your energy bills. We are happy to provide a free estimate.

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Three Reasons to Air Seal with Spray Foam

Three Reasons to Air Seal with Spray Foam

When homeowners think of saving money on energy bills, they first think of upgrading their insulation. Insulation is critical to reduce heat transfer and save money on energy bills! Did you know that sealing air leaks is as important as insulating?

Air sealing involves sealing penetration points around the exterior of the home (also known as the envelop or "shell" of the home). This includes sealing gaps and air leaks in exterior walls (around outlet covers, etc.), windows, doors, etc.

Here are just some of the benefits of air sealing:
  • Improved indoor air quality by helping to keep allergens and pests out of the home. Sealing a home’s air leaks can help improve indoor air quality by lowering the number of asthma triggers that can enter the inside of a home or building.
  • Reduced energy bills by keeping conditioned air (heated or cooled air) inside the home. Air sealing a home is one of the most cost-effective ways to reduce energy bills and make your home more comfortable. ENERGY STAR estimates a homeowner can reduce heating and cooling costs up to 20% by upgrading their insulation and sealing air leaks.
  • Reduced wear and tear on your HVAC system. By keeping conditioned air in your home, your HVAC system runs less often which reduces wear and tear on the system. This will help extend the life of your HVAC system.

Spray foam insulation is a great option to both insulate and seal air leaks in one step. In fact, one of the key benefits of spray foam is improved indoor air quality. The material provides an exceptional air seal, works as a thermal barrier (insulator), and helps control moisture issues. This improved air-tightness provides better control of indoor humidity, which reduces mold inside the home. It also dramatically reduces the number of pollutants that can enter the home (pollen, dust, etc.) and allows a home to have proper mechanical ventilation to filter the air and keep the interior air clean.

Interested in air sealing your home by adding spray foam insulation? Contact us to learn more.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2017
Want an Efficient Home? Manage Airflow.

Want an Efficient Home? Manage Airflow.

Looking to build (or own) a home that is efficient and comfortable? The key is airflow, and we have building science to thank.

Airflow is a key component of the study of building science. When a building has improper airflow, it can impact both the building and it’s residents. Improper airflow can result in a variety of problems including mold growth, energy loss, and can encourage the infiltration and spread of pollutants. When airflow is properly managed each of these can be reduced, and the home’s HVAC system can operate more efficiently.

There are two common types of building airflow. Uncontrolled airflow is the type many people are familiar with. Years ago, uncontrolled airflow was also known as having a “leaky” home. Uncontrolled airflow is when air enters and leaves the home in a random fashion. This type of airflow doesn’t work in conjunction with the HVAC system, which can impact both energy use and home comfort.

On the other type is controlled airflow. This is when airflow is managed in a way that works with the home’s HVAC system. Sealing air leaks and adding mechanical ventilation allows airflow to be controlled to create a comfortable and efficient home environment.

Have questions about your home’s ventilation and overall energy efficiency? Contact our office to speak with one of our insulation professionals.

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Energy Saving Projects for Spring

Energy Saving Projects for Spring

Spring weather is the perfect time to start saving money on energy bills. Don’t let comfortable temps fool you – the heat of summer isn’t far away and a cold winter is sure to follow. Here are five ways to help keep your energy bills in line this summer, and throughout the year.
  1. TUNE UP YOUR HVAC SYSTEM. A home’s HVAC gets a lot of use – it runs all winter to heat your home and often during the summer to combat heat and humidity. Call your local HVAC contractor and schedule a tune up.
  2. INSTALL A PROGRAMMABLE THERMOSTAT. Setting a programmable thermostat to a higher setting during the day when your family is at work or school can save roughly ten percent on annual energy bills. If your home doesn’t have a programmable thermostat, visit your local hardware store and pick one up.
  3. CHECK YOUR CEILING FANS. It’s easy to forget to reverse ceiling fans when the seasons change. During summer, reversing your ceiling fans can help properly draw cool air throughout the home and create a slight breeze to make your home comfortable.
  4. AIR SEAL. Air sealing your home keeps cooled air inside during summer and helps keep summer air pollutants like dust and pollen out of your home. Once air leaks are sealed this pays off year-round by keeping warm air inside during winter. It’s best to have air sealing done by a qualified contractor.
  5. UPGRADE ATTIC INSULATION. Most homes lack adequate insulation. As building codes change and require higher levels of energy efficiency, even newer homes can benefit from adding insulation. Blowing a fresh layer of insulation over your existing insulation is an easy and cost-effective way to reduce energy bills.
Don’t let another year of high energy bills take extra money out of your wallet. Contact our office with questions on these tips or to schedule a free insulating and air sealing estimate.

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Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Why Spray Foam?

Why Spray Foam?

If you’re not familiar with the benefits of spray foam insulation, we’re here to help! Like other insulation products such as fiberglass insulation and cellulose insulation, spray foam insulation reduces heat transfer between spaces in a home. Spray foam insulation also seals air leaks.

Why does this matter?
Air leaks exist throughout a home, whether you see them or not. Air leaks are often found around recessed lights (can lights), plumbing stacks, electrical wires, attic hatches/doors, around chimneys and more. Sealing air leaks keeps conditioned air (read: heated or cooled air) inside your home. When these are sealed conditioned air you’ve already paid for stays in your home. This results in your HVAC system working less, which keeps money in your pocket.

Sealing air leaks and adding proper mechanical ventilation to your home can increase your indoor air quality. Air leakage is not the same as ventilation. Relying on a “leaky” house for air exchange isn’t an efficient or effective way to manage indoor air quality or keep energy bills under control. Sealing these leaks and properly ventilating creates healthier indoor air, a more comfortable home and reduces energy bills.

Contact our team for a spray foam estimate on your next insulation project.

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