Winter & the value of new insulation

Winter is a harsh season for energy bills, but it can be worse if most of the heat you’re paying for is escaping your home.

Northern Energy Solutions specializes in outfitting homes with better, more efficient insulation. Products like closed-cell and open-cell spray foam are better at keeping heat in your home in the winter and letting it out in the summer. Companies like NES are concerned with what’s called the thermal envelope.

“The thermal envelope is really how, when we look at a house, we want to say, ‘OK, from the basement all the way to the ceiling, how can we draw a picture of your house without taking the pencil off the paper’?,” Northern Energy Solutions general manager Paul Schloegel said. “Because once we see a thermal bridge, and that’s where we can have heat go to the cold, it’s going to find its way through there. Once you allow that to happen, you’re kind of losing that battle against energy optimization.”

The new location for the Marquette Food Co-Op was recently fitted with closed-cell spray foam. It was a large project and should result in exponential savings for the organization.

“The Co-Op was looking for such a high-quality product to use because it’s basically saying, ‘hey, we want to lower our carbon footprint’,” Schloegel said.

NES also stresses the importance of hiring a qualified and certified home inspector for those looking to purchase a new house. While Northern Energy Solutions does not perform home inspections, they refer people to and work with inspectors in the area.