Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Windows to Be Incorporated into ENERGY STAR’s “Most Efficient” Program

During a stakeholder meeting hosted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on August 27, fenestration-related organizations learned that windows will be incorporated into ENERGY STAR’S ®  “Most Efficient” program.

The program’s project manager, Doug Anderson, said the designation will not include a label to be affixed to products, but pointed out that a label may be included in various promotional tools such as Websites and other display materials. 

Anderson added that the windows program will be comparable to the EPA’s existing program for heating and cooling equipment.

The final ENERGY STAR ® criteria are expected to be published in October 2012.

Monday, August 27, 2012

California Window Film Industry Anticipating New Business, Respect

With the upcoming implementation of the new California Building Codes, many involved in the window film industry are anticipating increased business and new respect for the products they produce or supply.

“It’s a credibility thing,” said Mark Rascon, owner of Daystar Window Tinting. “Now window film products are going to be recognized as true building materials by other industries and trades.”

Taking effect in January 2014, the new California codes require window films to be NFRC-certified and provide a 10-year warranty while adhering to the Visual Quality Standards of the International Window Film Association (IWFA).

Rascon says this change will help companies like his gain new business and improve public perception by showing that window film products are a viable part of a true energy cost-cutting initiative.

Window film manufacturers can certify the energy performance ratings of their products through the National Fenestration Rating Council's (NFRC) certification program. This program provides an independent, third-party verification of window film performance that allows consumers to compare products and make more informed purchasing decisions.


Monday, August 20, 2012

Nearly 120 Billion Square Feet of Energy Efficient Housing Expected by 2020

A new report from Pike Research says construction of new energy efficient homes, and retrofits of existing buildings, will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 42 percent between 2012 and 2020.

This is expected to produce 118.6 billion square feet of energy efficient residential space while driving an annual market value of $84 billion by 2020.

Pike Research defines energy efficient homes as properties built to exceed the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) by at least 15 percent on a kilowatt-hour per square foot basis.

The report created by Pike Research is entitled, "Energy Efficient Homes." It analyzes the global market opportunity for energy efficient homes, focusing on key market segments such as building envelope improvements.

The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) offers a wide range of educational and training programs designed to help consumers and industry professionals better understand the role fenestration products play in contributing to improved energy efficiency and contributing to the growth of green building and sustainability.

Visit our Website to learn more.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Researchers at UCLA Developing Film to Harness Solar Power

While still undergoing refinement for introduction into the mainstream marketplace, researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) have developed a transparent film that can be applied to windows to harness solar power.

The film is currently only able to convert about four percent of the infrared light into electricity, compared to commercially available solar products which are able to convert about 12.4 percent. UCLA researchers are working to improve the film’s capability to 11 percent infrared conversion to electricity, and they are also developing methods to apply the film via a spray-on application, which promises to make the product affordable for consumers.

One professor at UCLA’s California NanoSystems Institute estimates the film will eventually be available at an installation cost of about $10-$15 for an average home window. Several commercial companies have already expressed interest in the product, but they have not yet been named.

The National Fenestration Rating Council's (NFRC) Certified Products Directory (CPD) contains 258 window film product lines from nine companies.


Monday, August 6, 2012

IMT Founder, Chair Calls Energy Efficiency "Invisible," Encourages Promoting Benefits

Founder and Chair of the Institute for Market Transformation (IMT), David Goldstein, said in a recent blog posting that energy efficiency is invisible and should be promoted by conveying its benefits.

According to Goldstein, its invisibility is a challenge because it relegates energy efficiency to a lower priority than certain other resources, which are often more costly and less green. Consequently, energy efficiency does not make the top-three-priorities lists that often guide critical policy decisions, and tens of trillions of dollars of potential efficiency benefits are lost.

Goldstein adds that while energy efficiency is the single most powerful tool at our disposal for combating global climate change and recovering from the recession, achieving results requires changes in public policy. Effecting such changes, however, depends on making the benefits of energy efficiency more relatable from a consumer's perspective.

One way the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) conveys the benefits of energy efficiency is by informing consumers how the values found on its energy performance rating label may impact the overall energy efficiency of their homes. With fact sheets available in 83 retail locations around the country, NFRC educates consumers at the point of purchase.