Bundle Up on Energy Saving Tips!December 17, 2014
Renewal by Andersen of Northeast Pennsylvania was in the news again when our own Lynann Everett was interviewed and quoted in this recent Morning Call article:
Fight the energy monster
Vendors at the 12th annual Eastern Pennsylvania Home Show in Allentown feature ways to bring down home heating costs.
By Jack Romig
Special to The Morning Call
Colder weather finds the energy monster stalking once more around your house, robbing you of heat and trying to empty your bank account. Taking the icy wind out of his sails will be one of the main focuses of the 12th annual Eastern Pennsylvania Home Show Saturday and next Sunday in Ag Hall at the Allentown Fairgrounds.
Plus, a good “monster” — a huge, plasma-screened display that digitally remodels a whole home’s exterior — will be sure to captivate visitors.
“Naturally, a fall show is concerned with heat conservation as we head into winter,” says Charmagne Harris, show coordinator for Connecticut-based Jenks Productions, which runs the event. “As you’d expect, the vendors will spend a lot of their energy on energy.”
Pocono Home Exteriors is a good example of one vendor eager to show off an energy-saving product. The Blakeslee, Monroe County, company is an all-around provider of home improvements, among them siding, roofing and whole-house remodels.
Owner Don Verge says his firm will be working closely with one of the show’s most visible vendors, Mastic Home Exteriors. This manufacturer hopes to wow attendees with a 60-foot trailer that, with its plasma screens, takes up one whole row on the show floor.
Verge says this venue can show prospective buyers what their remodeling ideas will look like on their own houses. “We go out on a consult, and we take a digital picture of a house,” he says. The image is fed into a computer equipped with display software, and the customer then can see what a range of improvements will look like on his or her house — variations in color, exterior cladding, stone facing, windows, different siding selections and more.
Pocono Home Exteriors also will display siding that incorporates built-in insulation. The insulation, available with R ratings from 3.5 to 4, is contoured to the siding and goes up at installation.
And, contrary to what consumers might think, Verge says it’s not too late to consider installing a new exterior treatment this season. “We side all year,” he says, adding that customers who schedule winter projects receive a seasonal discount.
Although the energy-saving ideas from Maui Kitchens, Allentown, are not seasonal, they are significant. “One big thing is LED lighting, which uses about a fifth of the energy of old incandescents,” says owner David Iacovone. “They have no filaments, and they last 50,000 hours, which is pretty much indefinitely. These days all our floodlights and under-cabinet lights are LEDs. That’s what we use.”
Iacovone says his customers are just as strongly focused on energy savings in the kitchen appliances they buy, and in the new doors and windows that are usually part of the company’s whole-kitchen remodeling projects.
Front and center at the Maui Kitchens booth will be a painted or glaze-finished kitchen island, which offers among other features a new place to locate microwave ovens. (Some homeowners dislike above-the-range mountings, Iacovone says.) The island on display at the show will include a countertop in concrete, an option that offers versatility in size, color, edge treatments and possible inserts or inlays.
Insulation is key for the window-replacement customers of Bethlehem’s Renewal by Andersen of Northeast Pennsylvania, says Lynann Everett, interactive marketing manager.
For instance, the company’s double-pane windows, including bay, double-hung and casement varieties, include an insulating space filed with an argon-gas blend between panes. A metal oxide coating on glass surfaces “maximizes visible light while reducing solar heat gain,” Everett says. “In winter, the coating helps keep heat in. In summer, it helps keep it outside.”
Everett adds that the coating makes windows easier to clean “and reduces water spotting up to 99 percent.”
Renewal by Andersen also installs year-round. “Winter is a good time to do it,” Everett says. “There’s only one window out at a time, and we seal up each room while we’re working. Because of contraction caused by the cold, you get the tightest fit with windows installed in the winter.”
Tru-Comfort, a Bethlehem-based provider of heating, air-conditioning and indoor air quality products, also will be focusing on energy-saving solutions.
Jeff Frantz, Tru-Comfort sales manager, says setting up individually controlled zones in a home saves on energy. One system that effectively does that, he says, is the Mitsubishi ductless heat pump. The wall-mounted units, each with its own thermostat, can heat individual rooms. Alternatively, they can be installed with multi-zone outdoor units that serve up to eight zones, each with its own controls.
“Users can save around 50 percent on energy costs compared to conventional electric heat,” Frantz says. “These units can deliver 100 percent of their rated heat capacity when temperatures outside are down to 5 degrees Fahrenheit. The only thing that can beat that is geothermal.”
Reprinted from: https://www.mcall.com/features/home/mc-homeshow-sunday-real-estate-1019-20141017-story.html