Unvented Attic May 2023 & Inflation Reduction Act update
At Chicago Green Insulation we are committed to delivering the best in class service and results as we also work to solve chronic issues in our city for employment and economic opportunity.
In this blog I want to focus on the two options to maximize your long term value. Spray foam is both an air barrier and an insulation. The new legislation in the Inflation Reduction Act offers many options to benefit you and your family but this specific offering. The easy offering is $1200 Federal Tax Credit equal to 1/3 of the cost of the materials as long at the installed insulation meets current energy code standards. That is nice and easy part of the solution but the real value add is air sealing plus insulation. Between now and July 1st when the Internal Revenue Service is expected to add 200 pages of additional rules to this incentive, NOW is the time to get this work done! The $5,000 Federal Tax Credit is grandfathered in when we document the reduction in air leakage combined with our code compliant installation of spray foam insulation but we do not know what will happen July 1st!
Beyond the Federal Tax Credit, why would I care about the air leakage of my home? Every cubic foot of air that escapes from your home is a cubic foot of air that the HVAC has created either by warming the air or cooling the air (and dehumidifying the air). Traditional methods of insulating homes allow lots and lots of air leakage. As we have been conducting these tests on homes, we have seen reductions of as much as 90% compared to the original configuration of the home.
Lets talk about why a home is uncomfortable or too expensive to heat and cool. The loss of heat/ cooling is largely associated with air leakage. Air leakage in your space comes in the form of holes to the exterior walls of your home. The average American home (1200 square feet) has enough holes in the walls of the home, with each hole averaging about the size of tip of your pinky finger, when you add those holes it equals a four square foot hole in the walls. This is roughly equal to a window being left open 24/7 365 days per year. In addition to our work with foam, we use blower doors and thermal imaging to track down these holes. According to Dr. Allison Bailes at Energy Vanguard, you can reduce your air leakage by opening walls up and air sealing and achieve roughly. 20-30% reduction in air leakage. The challenge with these holes typically is that it challenges the expectations of families as few want to rip up perfectly good walls in bedrooms, living areas or even worse kitchens and bathrooms. With our energy audit we can find and solve these issues including demolition and replacement after foam insulating/ air sealing including dense pack cellulose.
Spray foam at roof deck (underside of the decking/ under the shingles) of your home. If you live in a typical construction home with an attic that covers most if not all of the living space in your home, meaning few if any cathedral ceilings. The reason we prefer to foam the roof is that this maximizes the reduction in air leakage and as you can read in my blog about the renovations on my home, this is the number one solution that will forever impact the comfort of your home as long as you live there. Additionally, if you are in the process of doing any sort of renovation, we can do the blower door before construction has begun to maximize the overall reduction in air leakage and get you as much of the $5000 as possible! (If you don’t know, we can do many parts of construction with various partners to help you have a single point of contact from beginning to end of construction!)
If you combine renewable energy and foam you can claim 1/3 of the total expenditure as a Federal Tax Credit. This incentive is available today and will likely change after July 1, 2023 so now is the time to reach out.
The second option is for those of you doing a deep energy retrofit including either geo thermal or solar. For those of you looking for this level of retrofit, we can help you with the design and as a part of that we can reduce the loads via the foam we would use and that would make the whole project eligible for a 1/3 Federal Tax Credit this year on the whole project as the foam is part of the design.
If you would like to talk, please call: 847-987-3626 and we can get you on the road to a better level of comfort/ cost effective living in your home! Comfort is only a FOAM CALL AWAY!