What energy savings and benefits can you get when you retrofit an old home, built almost 80 years ago? A homeowner’s association (Greenbelt Homes, Inc.) in Greenbelt, Maryland wanted to find out.
The community was looking for an upgrade to the overall quality of their homes within the larger Maryland county community they shared. Much more state-of-the-art housing has been constructed surrounding Greenbelt Homes in more recent years, and residents wanted to buoy their homes’ comparative value within this community. Specifically, they wanted:
Energy efficiency improvements
To reduce long-term home maintenance
The plan is to embark on a larger rollout of a decade-long community-wide upgrade in home energy improvements… but first, they needed to learn which materials and building products could provide the desired result, and if it was even possible to achieve the desired result by retrofitting these very old (some 70+ years) homes. Hence, a pilot project fully funded by the residents of the community was born.
One of the biggest issues to tackle during the pilot project was inefficient batt insulation, particularly in the crawl spaces below the homes, which contributed to poor energy efficiency. Proper air-sealing crawl space insulation was never implemented during the lifecycle of the building…and in some cases, where insulation had been added within the last 30 – 40 years, much of it had deteriorated. Thankfully, spray polyurethane foam (SPF) insulation helped save the day!