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!

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!

Benefits of Open-Cell Spray Foam Insulation

Homeowners concerned with energy efficiency have several options when choosing insulation products. Fiberglass insulation is common, but requires replacement as often as every 5 years. Closed Cell Foam is a premium product that costs more, but returns its value in the form of monthly utility savings and the fact that it does not need to be replaced under normal conditions – it carries a lifetime warranty.

Open Cell Foam is a good compromise for those homeowners who want the benefits of spray insulation without the initial investment for Closed Cell Foam.

Many clients choose Open Cell Foam for the cost savings. However, others select it because it allows vapor diffusion; moisture can escape the house through the foam, however it still makes the home airtight.

These photos from a White Plains retrofit of an 1840’s farmhouse demonstrate how one can encapsulate an attic with Open-Cell Foam. We can create access to even the most difficult areas, and the holes that are made in the wall are easily patched with drywall mud.

Do you have a home that you would like to operate more efficiently, lowering your bills, protecting your investment and creating an overall safe and more comfortable atmosphere? Call Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc. today and schedule an initial estimate with one of our insulation experts!

Attic Encapsulation Improves Energy Efficiency and Saves Money

Unseasonably warm weather has many home owners turning off their heaters and activating their air conditioning units much earlier in the year than expected. Many will experience sluggish performance which can lead to concern that their air handler is inadequate or needs repair.

What many of these home owners don’t realize is that their air conditioning unit is not the problem – the conditions under which it is operating are to blame. Most are located in attics at temperatures of up to 140°F! Can you imagine cooling a house effectively while drawing the source air from a virtual oven?

The solution is “Attic Encapsulation”, insulating the roof with spray foam and creating a cap that stops air leakage. Typically, attics draw air up through the house trapping heat where the air conditioning unit operates. Peak efficiency is achieved only when the air handler is positioned in a conditioned space void of warm, moist air. By encapsulating your attic with a layer of insulation, your cooling system becomes more efficient, saving you money and extending the life of your A/C equipment.

Replacing your air handler can be incredibly costly, as can months of paying for inefficient cooling during a long, hot summer. Instead of subjecting your family to the expense of maintaining poorly operating equipment in a less than ideal environment, consider Attic Encapsulation. Our team at Atlantic Spray can help address your questions and concerns and set you on a path to an energy efficient home. Contact us today!

Atlantic Spray Systems, Inc.