Planning to Remodel? Consider Upgrading Your Insulation at the Same Time.

Are you planning to remodel part, or much, of your home soon? The ideal time to consider upgrading your insulation is before you begin construction.

As you plan your improvements, schedule an assessment of your home’s efficiency. An energy audit can reveal many different adjustments you can make that could result in savings on your power bill as well as a more efficient home. Let our specialists perform a blower door test and create a custom list of modifications that you can carefully consider during your remodel.

If you are considering encapsulating your attic or conditioning your crawl space, wouldn’t you prefer to do these things as your other contractors finish their construction and rewiring? Plan ahead so you can have your old insulation safely and neatly removed, and new insulation installed before repainting and refinishing occurs.

Upgraded insulation is the perfect complement to today’s new materials and new technology. During your remodel, your contractors are likely to use other, more energy efficient appliances and products. By tightening the envelope of your home, preventing conditioned air from leaking out and contaminated, unconditioned air from seeping in, you can create a safer home environment that promotes durability and even improves the value of your property.

It’s easy to get started. Just call our professionals at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today and we’ll help you make a plan to efficiently and comfortably upgrade your insulation. We look forward to speaking with you soon!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

May is Building Safety Month

Virginia Governor, Bob McDonnell, signed a proclamation declaring May to be “Building Safety Month”. The proclamation recognizes that “critical safety issues in the building environment…affect…our citizen, regardless of age or occupation, both in everyday life and in times of natural disaster.” Part of a national campaign, led by the International Code Council, Building Safety Month activities and messages promote ensuring that all homes meet safety standards and all homeowners are aware of what they need to do in order to keep their property safe during natural disasters.

May Building Safety Month

Among the many possible modifications that are recommended to keep homes up to standard are various weatherization techniques employed by Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. Conditioning crawl spaces can actually help a home withstand the high winds associated with hurricanes, and encapsulating attics offers many benefits during dangerously hot weather, humid conditions and high wind as well.

Take a moment this month to review your home’s construction and consult with various professionals to ensure that it is up to current code, performing at maximum efficiency and providing a safe and stable home environment for you and your family.

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

 

Richmond and Virginia Beach, Virginia – Spring Allergy Capitals

Did you know that our region in Virginia includes TWO of the Spring Allergy Capitals, as ranked by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America? Richmond ranks as the 22nd worst metropolitan region for spring seasonal allergies and Virginia Beach ranks as the 20th worst out of 100! The list factors in the area’s pollen score, average medicine utilization per patient and the ratio of Board Certified Allergists per patient. Red Cedar, Hackberry, Elm, Willow and Poplar are some of the offending allergens and are responsible for a good amount of that annoying yellow/green powder covering your car day and night, and making the very air you breathe a combatant against your health.

Most people who suffer from seasonal allergies will stay home to avoid exposure, but they don’t realize that the home environment can be just as dangerous. Dust mites, animal dander and even cockroaches are all common sources of indoor allergens that can compromise the health of your family.

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. has many recommendations to help limit your exposure and make your indoor environment more comfortable and safer for your entire family. We suggest having old fiberglass insulation vacuumed out carefully by a professional who will ensure that the process doesn’t actually make your home dirtier. We recommend conditioning your crawl space to prevent moisture exchange with the outside air supply and to help eliminate the presence of pests. And we highly recommend installing an air ventilation system that will expel the “bad” air from inside your house to the outdoors while returning perfectly humidified, clean air to the house. In particular, we are fans of the EZ Breathe Ventilation System. This energy efficient unit operates effectively to improve your home environment and the health of your family.

How are seasonal allergies impacting you? If you would like to take steps to eliminate them, contact Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today for more information on all of the possible solutions to your allergy issues. We look forward to speaking with you today!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

Combating Seasonal Allergies at Home

Allergy Season is officially here and homeowners will soon begin the daily battle to keep their air clean and healthy for their families. While the onslaught of different pollens, as well as the proliferation of dust mites won’t soon end, there are steps you can take to make your home a true shelter against aggravating allergens.

Many people fail to recognize the relationship between crawl spaces and seasonal allergens. In many homes, air is drawn into the house from the crawl space, bringing with it all of the natural grime that collects there from plants and pests over time. Additionally, many homes have dusty attics which are also a source of inside air.

One recommendation you should consider is having your old insulation removed. A professional will vacuum it out and execute what is actually a very clean process. Reject any contractor who plans to bag up the insulation and drag it through your home – the transfer will only make conditions worse. Installing new, clean insulation, and replacing old fiberglass insulation with spray foam insulation creates a cleaner interior and fewer allergies!

You might also consider one of our favorite newer products, the EZ Breathe Ventilation System. This energy efficient system creates an air exchange that expels contaminants from your home and draws clean, healthy, air throughout your rooms increasing your family’s comfort and safety. Paired with clean insulation and encapsulated crawl spaces and/or attics, your home can be the perfect sanctuary against seasonal allergens! Have questions? Contact Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.

Improving the Air Quality in Your Home

If you have ever detected a stale or musty odor in the air or found excessive condensation on the interior of your windows, you have experienced the discomforts and health risks of poor ventilation. Your home’s air quality is critical to the health and safety of your family. Our research into the many available solutions to this problem led us to an exceptional product which we now install: the EZ Breathe Ventilation System.

EZ Breathe is a quiet, maintenance free and energy efficient unit that exhausts stale air, along with the contaminants and moisture that are found in it. The unit achieves whole home air exchange by exchanging stale air for fresh air. Most homes have a closed system that simply recirculates the air already in the building.

A ventilation system like EZ Breathe combats moisture, mold and mildew, allergens and asthmas triggers. It is the perfect complement to spray foam insulation which creates a tight environment that stops the wrong kind of air from permeating and causing damage.  It is superior to installing a dehumidifier when you encapsulate your crawl space and far more efficient. When installed in a basement, it removes cold, most air from the area and draws down the warm air from the rest of the home which is ideal for drying out moist spaces, making them safer, more structurally sound and more comfortable.

The advantages to installing an EZ Breathe ventilation systems, especially when insulating your home, are far too numerous to mention in one brief article. If you think you could benefit from whole home air exchange in a quiet, efficient package, contact Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today!

Spray Foam Insulation and Roof Shingles – Dispelling Myths

There is a common misconception among homeowners that having spray foam insulation installed underneath the roof causes too much heat to build up under shingles, leading to damage or invalidating the shingle warranty. The truth is that heat does build up under shingles, but the rise in temperature is negligible.

It is true that you can never install fiberglass insulation up against your roof; however the reason is that air can pass through the insulation and cause condensation to build up under the shingles. Spray foam insulation does not trap air against the shingles so the dew point is irrelevant. In the past, contractors ventilated the roof to allow moisture to escape, not heat. A misunderstanding of the process led consumers and even manufacturers to back away from spray foaming near the roof.

Today, many shingle manufacturers accept spray foam insulation and understand that it creates a superior, tight environment that makes homes more comfortable and efficient. You can now have your contractor help you choose a shingle manufacturer that will warrant its products without worrying that your choice of the best foam products will jeopardize your roof’s integrity and longevity.

If you are planning to have your home re-roofed, or are building a new home, consult with your spray foam insulation specialist today to help you formulate the very best plan for your property.

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!

The History of Building Codes

Just in time for President’s Day, we thought we’d share an interesting piece of historical trivia. While standards for new construction and remodeling, and especially energy efficiency requirements evolve constantly, there is nothing new about the concept of setting basic rules for builders. Did you know that both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson advocated for the establishment of building codes? Both were concerned with establishing basic regulations to ensure that public safety would never be compromised due to lack of established standards. Our founding fathers were as concerned as we are that homes and commercial buildings be secure places for our citizens.

Today, many standards are based on the findings and recommendations of the International Code Council, a US-based non-profit, non-governmental organization that is dedicated to building safety. The Council’s recommendations are disseminated in the form of “I-Codes” which are adopted by states and enforced by government agencies. They incorporate standards for building residential and commercial buildings, and address building safety, fire safety and energy efficiency. The codes are also used by agencies like the IRS to establish standards for tax credits, like the $2000 “25L” credit recently extended to include new homes built to certain energy standards in 2012.

The IECC or International Energy Conservation Code is established and revised by the Council and embodies many of the guidelines that we at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. follow to increase the efficiency of local homes and commercial properties. Standards are constantly evolving and we intentionally pursue new educational opportunities and maintain memberships in multiple organizations that help us keep informed about new technology and practices.

If you want to ensure that your home or commercial property is up to the most current standards of energy efficiency, contact us today and we’ll set up a consultation to help you determine your next steps. We look forward to speaking with you soon!

Source:

Wikipedia: International Code Council

What Is ENERGY STAR?

You are very likely familiar with the name ENERGY STAR, and have seen it on new appliances as well as on inserts in your power bill. However, do you know what ENERGY STAR actually is and how its programs can help you save money and energy through a variety of improvements to your home?

ENERGY STAR is a government-backed initiative to improve the comfort, efficiency and affordability of US housing. The program issues educational materials, research and recommendations to help homeowners take action to make their homes more environmentally conscious, and to teach contractors to apply best practices to help you reduce wasted energy and utility costs.

You will often find the ENERGY STAR seal on new appliances, and purchasing these highly efficient products can sometimes qualify you for rebates from your utility company or even save you money on your taxes. A simple call to your power and gas providers can help you determine which rebates are available and which products qualify, further reducing the overall cost of energy in your household.

ENERGY STAR supports and promotes the services of highly trained contractors able to perform Energy Audits using technology and observation to get a “whole home” perspective on a building’s efficiency. Certified auditors, like our staff at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc., can evaluate your home and issue a list with suggestions ranging from simple do-it-yourself improvements to larger modifications that can make a huge difference in your power bills. You may even choose to have a follow-up audit taken after you have applied the recommendations to get a more objective view of how much energy you are actually saving.

One method of improvement that ENERGY STAR strongly supports is sealing the “envelope” of a house, preventing conditioned air from escaping and unconditioned air from infiltrating your home. Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. specializes in applying spray foam insulation to achieve this in a long-lasting, highly effective way. It’s time to start saving money and increasing comfort – contact us today!

Installing Spray Foam Insulation in Historic Properties

One of our more interesting challenges at Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. is updating and upgrading insulation in properties that have historic value. In this region, there are numerous houses that trace their origin to the pre-Civil War era, and even earlier, and many more of antebellum fame. These projects require extra care on our part as we simultaneously strive to protect history and preserve it for the future.

Historic Buildings offer us the primary challenge of limited space. Spray foam is the perfect product to stop air infiltration in these notoriously drafty homes. The foam has a higher “R Value” per square inch and can be applied conservatively yet still stop air transfer. To properly insulate historic homes, you must use spray foam.

We have insulated many historic properties with spray foam and have found it well accepted by the community responsible for protecting the integrity of the homes. If you would like to explore spray foam insulation for your historic property, contact Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today and we’ll schedule a consultation to discuss your options. We look forward to meeting you!