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Thursday, August 8, 2013

Sequencing Your Energy Efficient Home Improvements.

So many restaurants and so little time. The same can be said for all the energy efficient products available for your home and choosing them in order of benefit and accounting for budget is very important.

Several months back I told the story of a home we redecked with radiant barrier deck, added insulation, ventilation and repaired his torn a/c ducts.  During the product selection process I noticed the customer had nice windows installed. When I commented on them he went into a cursing rage about the lying contractor and worthless windows he had paid for. I knew his energy loss was a serious problem. His a/c ran all day and in the winter his heat ran all the time. When the deficiencies were corrected, on the first night it went down to 35 degrees. He called to tell me his heater cycled only one time that night rather than run continuously. I informed him that his windows were now working. His correct order of repair would have been to fix his duct work rather that climatize his attic, then ventilate because Texas gets so hot, insulate to contain his energy, radiant barrier decking to keep the radiant heat out that penetrated his insulation and then the windows.

When you have a 165 degree oven on top your home you either lower the attic temperature or you start cooking in the attic. This particular home had three amplifying issues to a hotter home. First it was a lower slope keeping the roof close to the ceiling and allowing the radiant heat to stay radiant, rather than converting to convected heat over distance. Secondly it was a hip design so more roof was close to the ceiling than on a gable design where on the gable ends the roof is far from the ceiling. Lastly the deck was one inch plank and there was heavy framing lumber. This added more material to absorb the daily heat and then radiate heat longer into the night.

There are other products not covered here like roofs with a high Solar Reflective Index, a measure of how much light bounces off the roof and is not absorbed and how fast the roof material throws off the heat it has absorbed, will be discussed in the next blog and how they different systems effect each other.

Jon Alan Wright
Jon Wright Roofing, Siding, and Windows
1915 Peters Rd., Suite 310
Irving, TX 75061
972.251.1818 Office
214.718.3748 Cell
972.554.8090 Fax
    Follow jwrightroofing on Twitter


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Allstate Roofing said...

As the Owner of an Arizona roofing company known as Allstate Roofing, I know just how tough it is to keep the heat out of your home.

One of the best routes in Arizona is to keep your attic cool too, which reduces the heat floating around within your walls and ceiling.

To accomplish this, vent fans in the attic, as well as a newer roof can help!

Kathy Thomas
Allstate Roofing Owner