Contest Submission!!

As part of our community outreach/give back to the community, we would like to offer three families an opportunity to weatherize their home for FREE in time for the Holidays. All we ask is just a submission through our website, of why they need the help. This is not income based, just strictly for people that may need help for whatever circumstances.

The Submission requirements are as follows:

Just click the “Giveaway Submission”

Fill out the form with full information

Click Submit

 

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Milwaukee Energy Efficiency

Would you like to save on your energy bills? Me² can help

Milwaukee Energy Efficiency program (Me²) is a federally funded program to help City of Milwaukee homeowners and businesses finance energy efficiency upgrades to their properties. Me² makes it easy and affordable to make energy saving upgrades such as insulation, air sealing, new heating equipment and lighting. With Me², you can pay for your upgrades as you save on your energy bills, in most cases with no money down. Me² helps you:

• Save money
• Increase comfort and safety
• Get the facts about your home or business
• Find personalized, budget-conscious solutions
• Do your part for the environment

Plus, Me² creates local jobs!

Call s or email us to get information on the summer sale!!!

 

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Air Sealing Milwaukee Insulation Installer

Seal Air Leaks

Air Sealing

Sealing the shell of your home—outer walls, doors, ceiling, windows and floors—from air leaks is one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to increase comfort and energy efficiency. Sealing air leaks reduces drafts, controls moisture, keeps out pollutants and improves overall comfort.

Many air leaks and drafts are easy to find because they are easy to feel, like those around doors and windows. However, hiring a contractor to perform a Blower Door test, which pressurizes and depressurizes your home to measure air leakage, can help you find many of your home’s hidden leaks.

Posted in Air Sealing, Attic Insulation, Cellulose Insulation, Energy Audits, Energy Efficiency, Foam, Insulation Contractor, Wall Insulation, Weatherization | Leave a comment

Energy Audit Milwaukee

Professional Home Energy Assessments

Professional energy assessments generally go into great detail. The energy auditor should do a room-by-room examination of the residence, as well as a thorough examination of past utility bills.

Many professional energy assessments will include a blower door test. Most will also include a thermographic scan. There’s also another type of test—the PFT air infiltration measurement technique—but it is rarely offered.

Preparing for an Energy Assessment

Before the energy auditor visits your house, make a list of any existing problems such as condensation and uncomfortable or drafty rooms. Have copies or a summary of the home’s yearly energy bills. (Your utility can get these for you.) Auditors use this information to establish what to look for during the audit. The auditor first examines the outside of the home to determine the size of the house and its features (i.e., wall area, number and size of windows). The auditor then will analyze the residents’ behavior:

  • Is anyone home during working hours?
  • What is the average thermostat setting for summer and winter?
  • How many people live here?
  • Is every room in use?

Your answers may help uncover some simple ways to reduce your household’s energy consumption. Walk through your home with the auditors as they work, and ask questions. They may use equipment to detect sources of energy loss, such as blower doors, infrared cameras, furnace efficiency meters, and surface thermometers.

Selecting an Energy Auditor

There are several places where you can locate professional energy assessment or auditing services. Your state or local government energy or weatherization office may help you identify a local company or organization that performs audits. They may also have information on how to do your own assessment. Your electric or gas utility may conduct residential energy assessments or recommend local auditors. Also check your telephone directory under headings beginning with the word “Energy” for companies that perform residential energy assesments. See the Learn More section on the right side of the page (or below if you’ve printed it out) for more auditor resources.

Before contracting with an energy auditing company, you should take the following steps:

  • Get several references, and contact them all. Ask if they were satisfied with the work.
  • Call the Better Business Bureau and ask about any complaints against the company.
  • Make sure the energy auditor uses a calibrated blower door.
  • Make sure they do thermographic inspections or contract another company to conduct one.
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Air Seal and Insulate Milwaukee

Sealing and insulating the “envelope” or “shell” of your home — its outer walls, ceiling, windows, doors, and floors — is often the most cost effective way to improve energy efficiency and comfort. ENERGY STAR estimates that a knowledgeable homeowner or skilled contractor can save up to 20% on heating and cooling costs (or up to 10% on their total annual energy bill)by sealing and insulating.

To Seal and Insulate with ENERGY STAR:

  • Seal air leaks throughout the home to stop drafts,
  • Add insulation to block heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer,
  • Choose ENERGY STAR qualified windows when replacing windows.

You can also hire a contractor who will use special diagnostic tools to pinpoint and seal the hidden air leaks in your home. A Home Energy Rater can help you find contractors that offer air sealing services in your area.

Sealing Leaks

Many air leaks and drafts are easy to find because they are easy to feel — like those around windows and doors. But holes hidden in attics, basements, and crawlspaces are usually bigger problems. Sealing these leaks with caulk, spray foam, or weather stripping will have a great impact on improving your comfort and reducing utility bills. Click on the house diagram to see common air leak locations that you should aim to seal.

Homeowners are often concerned about sealing their house too tightly; however, this is very unlikely in most older homes. A certain amount of fresh air is needed for good indoor air quality and there are specifications that set the minimum amount of fresh air needed for a house. If you are concerned about how tight your home is, hire a contractor, such as a Home Energy Rater, who can use diagnostic tools to measure your home’s actual leakage. If your home is too tight, a fresh air ventilation system may be recommended.

After any home sealing project, have a heating and cooling technician check to make sure that your combustion appliances (gas- or oil-fired furnace, water heater, and dryer) are venting properly. For additional information on Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) issues related to homes, such as combustion safety, visit EPA’s Indoor Air Quality Web site.

Adding Insulation

Insulation keeps your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. There are several common types of insulation — fiberglass (in both batt and blown forms), cellulose, rigid foam board, and spray foam. Reflective insulation (or radiant barrier) is another insulating product which can help save energy in hot, sunny climates.

When correctly installed with air sealing, each type of insulation can deliver comfort and lower energy bills during the hottest and coldest times of the year.

Insulation performance is measured by R-value — its ability to resist heat flow. Higher R-values mean more insulating power. Different R-values are recommended for walls, attics, basements and crawlspaces, depending on your area of the country. Insulation works best when air is not moving through or around it. So it is very important to seal air leaks before installing insulation to ensure that you get the best performance from the insulation.

  • See Recommended Levels of Insulation to determine what is most cost-effective for your home.
  • For more comprehensive information, check the Department of Energy’s online Insulation Guide

To get the biggest savings, the easiest place to add insulation is usually in the attic. A quick way to see if you need more insulation is to look across your uncovered attic floor. If your insulation is level with or below the attic floor joists, you probably need to add more insulation. The recommended insulation level for most attics is R-38 (or about 12–15 inches, depending on the insulation type). In the coldest climates, insulating up to R-49 is recommended.

Sealing Ducts

In houses with forced-air heating and cooling systems, ducts are used to distribute conditioned air throughout the house. In a typical house, however, about 20 percent of the air that moves through the duct system is lost due to leaks and poorly sealed connections. The result is higher utility bills and difficulty keeping the house comfortable, no matter how the thermostat is set.

Because some ducts are concealed in walls and between floors, repairing them can be difficult. However, exposed ducts in attics, basements, crawlspaces, and garages can be repaired by sealing the leaks with duct sealant (also called duct mastic). In addition, insulating ducts that run through spaces that get hot in summer or cold in winter (like attics, garages, or crawlspaces) can save significant energy.

Additionally, if you are replacing your forced-air heating and cooling equipment, make sure your contractor installs the new system according to ENERGY STAR quality installation guidelines. A quality installation will include a thorough inspection of your duct system, including proper sealing and balancing of ductwork, to help ensure that your new system delivers the most comfort and efficiency.

Posted in Air Sealing, Attic Insulation, Cellulose Insulation, Energy Audits, Energy Efficiency, Insulation Contractor, Wall Insulation, Weatherization | Leave a comment

Ice Dam Insulation Milwaukee Contractor Milwaukee

On roofs of buildings

Ice build up on slate roof

Ice dam forming on slate roof

An ice dam, on a smaller scale, is a problem of house and building maintenance in cold climates. An ice dam can occur when snow accumulates on the slanted roof of a house with inadequate insulation. Heat conducted through the insufficient insulation and warm air from the attic bypasses warms the roof and melts the snow on those areas of the roof that are above living spaces, but does not melt the snow on roof overhangs. Meltwater flows down the roof, under the blanket of snow, onto the eave and into the gutter, where colder conditions on the overhang cause it to freeze. Eventually, ice accumulates along the eave and in the gutter. Snow that melts later cannot drain properly through the ice on the eave and in the gutter, resulting in leaks to the roof space resulting in damaged ceilings, walls, roof structure and insulation. The ice that builds up on the roof can be removed by trained professionals that use special steam equipment to ensure quick and safe removal without causing damage to the roof.

Source: Wikipedia

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Insulation Milwaukee, Wisconsin Contractor/Installer

Types of Insulation

When insulating your home, you can choose from many types of insulation.

The table below provides an overview of most of the available insulation forms, insulation materials, their installation methods, where they’re applicable to install in a home, and their advantages.

Table 1. Types of Insulation
Form Insulation Materials Where Applicable Installation Method(s) Advantages
Blanket: batts and rolls Fiberglass
Mineral (rock or slag) wool
Plastic fibers
Natural fibers
Unfinished walls, including foundation walls, and floors and ceilings. Fitted between studs, joists, and beams. Do-it-yourself.
Suited for standard stud and joist spacing, which is relatively free from obstructions.
Concrete block insulation Foam beads or liquid foam:

  • Polystyrene
  • Polyisocyanurate or polyiso
  • Polyurethane

Vermiculite or perlite pellets

Unfinished walls, including foundation walls, for new construction or major renovations. Involves masonry skills. Autoclaved aerated concrete and autoclaved cellular concrete masonry units have 10 times the insulating value of conventional concrete.
Foam board or rigid foam Polystyrene
Polyisocyanurate or polyiso
Polyurethane
Unfinished walls, including foundation walls;
floors and ceilings;
unvented low-slope roofs.
Interior applications: must be covered with 1/2-inch gypsum board or other building-code approved material for fire safety.

Exterior applications: must be covered with weatherproof facing.

High insulating value for relatively little thickness.

Can block thermal short circuits when installed continuously over frames or joists.

Insulating concrete forms (ICFs) Foam boards or foam blocks Unfinished walls, including foundation walls, for new construction. Installed as part of the building structure. Insulation is literally built into the home’s walls, creating high thermal resistance.
Loose-fill Cellulose
Fiberglass
Mineral (rock or slag) wool
Enclosed existing wall or open new wall cavities;
unfinished attic floors;
hard-to-reach places.
Blown into place using special equipment; sometimes poured in. Good for adding insulation to existing finished areas, irregularly shaped areas, and around obstructions.
Reflective system Foil-faced kraft paper, plastic film, polyethylene bubbles, or cardboard Unfinished walls, ceilings, and floors. Foils, films, or papers: fitted between wood-frame studs, joists, and beams Do-it-yourself.

All suitable for framing at standard spacing. Bubble-form suitable if framing is irregular or if obstructions are present.

Most effective at preventing downward heat flow; however, effectiveness depends on spacing.

Rigid fibrous or fiber insulation Fiberglass
Mineral (rock or slag) wool
Ducts in unconditioned spaces and other places requiring insulation that can withstand high temperatures. HVAC contractors fabricate the insulation into ducts either at their shops or at the job sites. Can withstand high temperatures.
Sprayed foam and foamed-in-place Cementitious
Phenolic
Polyisocyanurate
Polyurethane
Enclosed existing wall or open new wall cavities;
unfinished attic floors.
Applied using small spray containers or in larger quantities as a pressure sprayed (foamed-in-place) product. Good for adding insulation to existing finished areas, irregularly shaped areas, and around obstructions.
Structural insulated panels (SIPs) Foam board or liquid foam insulation core
Straw core insulation
Unfinished walls, ceilings, floors, and roofs for new construction. Builders connect them together to construct a house. SIP-built houses provide superior and uniform insulation compared to more traditional construction methods; they also take less time to build.
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Insulation Milwaukee, Air Sealing Milwaukee, Contractor

Methodology for Estimated Energy Savings from Cost-Effective Air Sealing and Insulating

EPA estimates that homeowners can typically save up to 20% of heating and cooling costs (or up to 10% of total energy costs) by air sealing their homes and adding insulation in attics, floors over crawl spaces, and accessible basement rim joists. This estimate is based on energy modeling (using REM/Rate version 11.0) of cost-effective improvements made to ‘typical’ existing U.S. homes with a weighted composite of characteristics. The modeled results are corroborated by the field experience of professional building science contractors who have done air sealing and insulation work for more than 20 years.

Establishing a ‘Typical’ U.S. Existing House

The Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) indicates that a large block of existing U.S. housing stock was constructed between 1975 and 1985, just after the 1973 oil embargo, when there was a new increased awareness of energy use in homes. As a result, EPA based its modeling around the common construction characteristics of homes built in this era as a proxy for a ‘typical’ existing U.S. home.

Construction characteristics for the 1975–85 era were determined based on a review of RECS data from the U.S. Department of Energy, 1997 EDS (Energy Data Sourcebook for the U.S. Residential Sector and earlier versions) data from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and other supporting data, including anecdotal experience of ENERGY STAR staff and stakeholders. Based on these sources, EPA assumed the following characteristics for a house from the 1975–85 era:

  • 1,500 square feet of conditioned floor area;
  • 14% window-to-floor-area ratio;
  • 20% duct leakage to the outside;
  • three bedrooms; and
  • “stick” construction (wooden studs, joists and rafters), with batt insulation in walls and blown insulation in attics.

Geographic climate factors, regional construction styles (e.g., basement, crawl space or slab-on-grade), and fuel type characteristics (e.g., natural gas or electricity) were then proportionally weighted; and estimated energy use calculated for “typical” composite houses in two climates that represented a weighted average for a Northern and a Southern home.

Estimating Energy Savings from Improvements Made to the ‘Typical’ Home

For the purpose of energy estimating savings, EPA assumed that a knowledgeable homeowner or contractor could cost-effectively:

  • Seal air leaks throughout the house, focusing on leaks to the attic space, through the foundation, and around windows and doors. An average documented baseline value of 0.91 ACHNAT (natural air changes per hour) was used for Northern homes and 0.94 ACHNAT was used for Southern homes. Both Northern and Southern homes were estimated to be improved to a leakage level of 0.50 ACHNAT.
  • Add insulation to improve R-values from the average documented attic insulation values of R-15 in the North and R-13 in the South to R-38; improve basement rim joists from R-0 to R-11; and improve floors over crawl spaces from R-0 to R-11.

Note: In estimating savings opportunities, EPA considered that the 1975–85 construction era coincided with the period after the 1973 oil-embargo when early residential energy conservation measures were first becoming widespread (e.g., storm windows over single-pane/clear glass windows, some caulking & sealing to reduce air leaks, increased attic insulation, etc.). EPA also assumed that original, as-built HVAC and water heating equipment was replaced in the 1990s by 1993–2000 MEC/NAECA-era equipment.

Based on these projected cost-effective improvements, EPA estimates the following potential energy and utility bill savings:

Location Site MMBTU¹ Savings Utility Bill Savings (2007 data²)
North Total House 14% 12%
Heating and cooling only 20% 19%
South Total House 13% 11%
Heating and cooling only 23% 20%
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Insulation installer or contractor in milwaukee?

Air Sealing Contractors

An Air Sealing Contractor is a specialized contractor that seals air leaks in the building’s envelope. They commonly use spray foam and other materials to seal bypasses, gaps, and cracks in attics, basement, walls and floors.

Finding an Air Sealing Contractor

Air Sealing Contractors are not commonly listed in the yellow pages under “air sealing”. To find an air sealing contractor contact a Home Energy Rater in your area and ask if they perform air sealing services or you can just call us.

Tips for working with Air Sealing Contractors

  • Ask if they measure air leakage before and after sealing using a blower door.
  • Ask if they will test the safety of combustion appliances after sealing.
  • Air Sealing should be completed before adding insulation. Some Air Sealing contractors also install insulation or can recommend an insulation contractor they typically work with.
  • Ask if they install insulation or can refer an insulation contractor.

Insulation Contractors

An Insulation Contractor is a specialized contractor who installs thermal insulation. Insulation contractors usually specialize in one type of insulation (e.g. fiberglass, cellulose, spray foam), but some will offer to install more than one type.

Finding an Insulation Contractor

Insulation contractors can be found by looking in the yellow pages or you can simply call us.

Tips for working with Insulation Contractors

Ask the contractor what “R-value” of insulation they will install. “R” means resistance to heat flow. The higher the R-value, the greater the insulation power. When insulation is installed, your contractor should provide you with a written statement of the R-value as required in the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) insulation regulations.

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Cellulose Insulation Milwaukee

Dry cellulose (loose fill)

Dry cellulose is used in retrofitting old homes by blowing the cellulose into holes drilled into the tops of the walls. It can also be blown into a new wall construction by using temporary retainers or netting that is clamped in place then removed once the cellulose has reached the appropriate density. This form of application does settle as much as 20% but the stated R-value of the cellulose is accurate after settling occurs. In addition, a dense-pack option can be used to reduce settling and further minimize air gaps. Dense-pack places pressure on the cavity, and should be done by an experienced installer.

Loose fill in walls is an antiquated technique of using cellulose in wall cavities. The home performance industry and its accrediting bodies support the dense-pack standard of insulating wall cavities, which does not settle. This method stops the stack effect and convective loops in wall cavities.

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