Archives for 2012

Are You Losing Money Through the Roof?

Welcome winter weather! All over Virginia, homeowners are starting to turn on heater systems and preparing for cold days ahead. No matter how old or new your home is, if your attic is not properly insulated, you are quite literally losing money through your roof!

Fiberglass insulation provides a minimum standard of protection from heat loss and air transfer. It has a limited lifespan and should be replaced approximately every ten years. It does not conform to the spaces where it is installed, leaving gaps and spaces where air can creep in (and out).

Electricity prices are at a premium these days and most homeowners would prefer to avoid sending their precious heat out into the world. An expert application of spray foam insulation seals attic spaces and carries a lifetime warranty. The result is lower heating bills and more comfortable living spaces.

If the idea of spending less for better results is appealing to you, contact Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today to schedule a visual check of your attic and crawl spaces. We’ll be happy to give you a general estimate and address all of your insulation and weatherization concerns. Call us today!

Avoid Frozen Pipes – Weatherization Advice from Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

One of the most common concerns when winter arrives is freezing pipes – no one wants to experience the inconvenience and damage that can occur when the weather turns. There are measures you can take that will dramatically improve your chances of avoiding frozen pipes and give you peace of mind year-round.

If you experience freezing temperatures, even applying insulation to your pipes directly won’t help in the coldest weather. The only way to ensure that your pipes function regardless of temperature is to condition your crawl space. An application of spray foam on the walls paired with heavy plastic along the perimeter will encapsulate the space and prevent heat loss and the intrusion of cold air. Spray foam insulation is the most reliable solution in cold weather. And, as extra benefits, it can prevent cold floors and help maintain more reasonable temperatures in hard-to-heat rooms.

Spray foam comes at a higher initial cost than other methods of insulation, although it also acts to increase the energy efficiency of your home, reduce heating and cooling bills and comes with a lifetime warranty. Additionally, it allows more efficient and inexpensive heating of water throughout the colder months. When heat is dissipated in the crawl space from the pipes, it stays in the conditioned space without escaping the seal of the house.

Still, some homeowners may want or need to consider insulating their pipes with tube foam and duct tape as a more affordable alternative. Insulating with this method is definitely better than leaving your pipes exposed, and Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. can still help. We would be happy to help you evaluate your options and choose the one that is best for your home and budget. Contact us today – we look forward to speaking with you!

Cold Floors in the Morning? Weatherization Tips from Atlantic Spray

It’s “that” time of year again. Mornings are crisp and sweaters are emerging from the depths of every closet. A common morning complaint can be heard once again – “our floors are so cold!” Thankfully, there is a solution that can not only alleviate this uncomfortable situation, but also improve the overall energy efficiency of your home.

Cold floors in a home are the result of under-insulated crawl spaces. Where fiberglass insulation exists instead of spray foam, air infiltration occurs letting your valuable heat escape and frigid air to creep in. If your floors are uncomfortably cold throughout the winter you should seriously consider conditioning your crawl space with spray foam insulation.

Unlike fiberglass, spray foam conforms to the space in which it is applied, including the cracks and gaps that are common in crawl spaces. By eliminating these openings, you seal the envelope of the space. As a bonus, conditioned crawl spaces help keep pests out of your home too!

If cold floors and rooms that seem impossible to heat are your concern, call us today and schedule an assessment of your property. Let us help you find ways to make your home a true shelter from the coming cold weather and the perfect cozy spot to spend your winter mornings. Find us at www.atlanticspray.com.

James City County Attic Encapsulation Project

We recently completed a spray foam attic encapsulation project at James City County’s Development and Planning building.

A blower door test revealed that the envelope of the building was extremely leaky and the air conditioning systems could not keep up enough to keep the occupants of the building comfortable. A leaky envelope costs more than just comfort – it costs real dollars as users overtax their HVAC system in hopes of creating a suitable work or home environment.

We encapsulated the attic of the building with spray foam which will take the latent load off of the air conditioning resulting in a much cooler and more energy efficient building! Taxpayers and employees alike benefit from the encapsulation.

If your HVAC system “should” be sufficient to keep your home or business comfortable, but you find that it is underperforming, the first thing you should do is schedule an “Energy Audit” or blower-door test. We will evaluate the current envelope and give you lots of practical advice for improving the energy efficiency of your property. Just like James City County, you too could find yourself saving money and energy while enjoying maximum comfort in your space. Call Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today!

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Have Your Crawl Conditioned by the Pros

In a recent article, we warned you about the drawbacks of contracting someone unqualified to install insulation. The industry, like many, is getting very competitive, and there are so-called “professionals” out there giving really bad advice. One of our clients recently encountered a confusing situation, and thankfully called on us to determine what the facts and best plan were, thereby saving her money and frustration.

In this case, a termite company came in and advised the homeowner that she needed to have a rotted wood joist replaced in a crawl space that we had already conditioned. She was confused because it didn’t seem logical that the joist would have rotted after conditioning. Knowing that we back our product with guarantees and great service, she called to express her concern. We scheduled an appointment, and on seeing the “repair” we were able to explain to her that the company had simply sistered a new piece of wood up against another joist. On inspection it was clear to us that there was nothing wrong with the existing joist. There was no sign of moisture problems – which made sense since they had the space conditioned!

Obviously the termite company felt that they had to find something in order to make their inspection profitable. Yet, it was the client who suffered the extra work and fees.

Conditioning crawl spaces takes away the environment that termites, rodents, mice and snakes really desire. Termite companies are threatened by this, and have, as a result, entered the insulation business. If you are looking in to conditioning your crawl space, we highly recommend contacting us at Atlantic Spray today.

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

Atlantic Spray Recognized for Excellent Service

Congratulations to the entire team at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. on receiving the “CMUS Talk of the Town Customer Satisfaction Award” based on positive feedback and reviews from our star customers.

Choose the Right Contractor to Install Your Insulation

One of the more disturbing trends in home insulation is the rise of different contractors expanding into the field with no additional training or specialization. Examples include roofing and HVAC contractors, among others, who want to increase their profit margins by incorporating other services into their own repertoire. Consumers need to beware that these contractors are often more concerned with money than they are with the sanctity of your home. Their lack of experience and training mean that they are less familiar with current standards of installation, current best practices and may not have access to the best products and equipment.

Contractors who don’t keep up with trends and standards are more likely to make mistakes that could become very costly problems for you down the line. You want the latest equipment and the best materials for your home insulation. During your search for the right professionals, please make sure that you get a quote directly from someone who specializes in home insulations. One good practice is to look for someone who is BPI Certified. BPI (Building Performance Institute, Inc.)is the organization that sets the standards for all insulation installation, based on previous performance, new information and statistical data. They offer support for customers who use their certified analysts and technicians, so you can rest assured that your repairs will be handled skillfully with professionalism.

Don’t fall victim to a company that has spread themselves and their skills too thin. Choose the pros at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. to protect your home today!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

Owner of Older Home Surprised by Utility Savings

Our BPI Certified Building Analyst and Production Manager, Bart Bonnano, recently audited an older home that was super leaky. The homeowner actually considered her utility bills reasonable, but we were able to make modifications that brought the home down from 17000 CFMs to around 4200. She will now recognize amazing savings on her monthly utilities and will also be contributing to a healthier environment.

While the blower door was running in the home, we sealed up several areas including the back sides of the kneewalls with rigid foam, which resulted in significant reductions in air leakage. There were cam lights and other penetrations through the attic that were foamed, and the HVAC system had several leakages in the distributor. The ductwork was sealed up with Mastic. After the repairs, the homeowner actually noticed more air coming out of the HVAC register creating a much more comfortable room (no more wasted air unnecessarily cooling the attic!).

Many people think that having a cool attic is the sign of a good home, when in truth, most are wasting energy cooling the space with their HVAC system when they could be more effectively cooling their homes. Energy Auditing with Blower Door Testing is an affordable and effective way to assess your home’s efficiency and potentially save you money and energy. Contact our BPI-Certified Analyst at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today to set up your Home Energy Audit!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

Recovery through Retrofit Loan Program – James City County

You may not realize it, but low-to-medium income home owners in James City County have access to funds that can enable them to increase their home’s energy efficiency and decrease their monthly utility bills. Qualifying borrowers can take advantage of maximum 5-year term, currently 0%, home improvement loans through the “Recovery Through Retrofit Loan Program”.

There is an application required of each interested home owner. Loan recipients must agree to have an “Energy Audit” performed by a BPSI-certified technician to evaluate possible energy improvements, as well as an exit audit to prove that modifications resulted in at least a 20% energy savings. The application is available online and must be accompanied by a $20 processing fee. The loans are made possible by a grant received by James City County in 2010 as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. $210,000 in funds have been earmarked to help home owners make these vital and community-enhancing improvements.

Loan recipients may include the costs of their pre- and post-renovation audits in their loans. Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. is a program-approved provider of Energy Audits and is certified by BPSI to perform the required Blower Door tests and additional evaluations. You can (and are encouraged to) seek pre-approval before ordering the initial test to ensure you qualify.

Loans amounts range from $500 to $10,000, and are currently offered at 0% interest (the agencies responsible for administering the funds may need to increase that at some point, so apply now). Once the loan is approved and closed the interest rate cannot change.

If you have additional questions about the loan process, we encourage you to seek out all of the applicable information on the James City County website dedicated to the loan program. When you are ready to request your energy audit and find out what kinds of repairs can turn your home into an efficient, comfortable and safer environment, contact us and our experts will explain the entire process and schedule an assessment at your convenience!