Friday, November 7, 2008

It's gettin' hot in here...I hope...

So, after assessing the insulation quote we got, and then (as previously mentioned) finding out that the HCBA had run out of funding for its Energy$avers grant this year, we decided that insulating the first floor brick walls can wait. First of all, it would cost us as much as it would to insulate the portions of the second floor that need insulation, in effect, doubling our ultimate bill. Secondly, I'm not entirely sold on the effectiveness of insulating the gap between the lathe/plaster and three wythes of brick. I mean, these bungalows were built originally to be energy efficient, in a sense...the brick is thick enough to keep the air out, and I'm not sold on the fact that foam is going to make a major difference, honestly. Maybe I'm wrong...if I am, and there's some evidence out there that supports it, please, let me know. I'm just operating on common sense here! :)

So, we're gonna get the floor in between the first and second floors filled with ProPink blown-in insulation, the knee wall on the slanted side of the roof insulated and house-wrapped (though I need to ask them about what that might do to the storage in the crawlspace--make it cold? make it "damp"? That would be bad. Also, there are two areas that we currently do not have access to in the corners of the dormered side. They'll cut an access hole in the wall to each and insulate behind there and under the floors there too. The only "disappointment" is that they can't get access to the flat dormered roof...I was hoping to have that insulated as well...particularly in the hopes that it would help to soundproof it, since we hear the rain falling on the roof a lot of times, and that's kinda distracting, particularly at night when you're trying to sleep. But they couldn't do it, apparently...oh well.

All in all, I'm hoping that this, coupled with weatherstripping the stupid casement windows up there (I HATE casements, especially since they have no storms and the screens are on the inside of the windows), will help us out on our gas bill, and possibly on our electric bill in the summer.

The insulation company did tell us that a lot of the upstairs is insulated and that the kitchen addition is insulated also. So that's good.

In terms of the Energy$avers grant, we're hoping that next year, we'll be able to use it to replace our water heater, furnace or see about installing some sort of energy-efficient central air system. The grant is awesome, and I'd like to get as much money out of it as I'm eligible for -- which is probably what everyone did this year, and that's why they ran out. It's not's smart! :)

Anyway, the insulators are scheduled to come the week after Thanksgiving, so we might even get to feel some positive effects of all the insulation this winter. And that's good! So we'll see how it goes...I will certainly keep you all posted!

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