Serious Targets Weatherization Assistance Projects
Serious Materials has added the SeriousWindows WAP Series, a new affordable high-performance line targeted specifically for low-income housing projects eligible for funding by Weatherization Assistance Program agencies and states. Not only are more funds available for such projects under the stimulus package, new audit tools used in such programs more effectively assess the impact of energy efficient windows, the manufacturer points out.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act increased Department of Energy WAP funding to over $5.5 billion over the next three years and the average investment allowance per household has doubled to $6,500, the manufacturer reports. With increased funding, Serious notes that more complete weatherization methods can be implemented, including the use of high-performance windows.
In addition, the company explains, weatherization energy audit tools did not previously provide a method for evaluating the impact of highly-insulating windows. DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, however, recently released an update to its NEAT (National Energy Audit Tool) program to include them. Using the NEAT model, the new WAP Series can create up to 12 times more energy savings per household than other common weatherization measures, the manufacturer claims.
“Today, we have the opportunity to secure our energy independence, combat climate challenges, and strengthen our economy using the most cost-effective and energy saving materials available. Their benefits for WAP agencies, and for the low-income families they serve, are tremendous,” says Kevin Surace, Serious CEO. “Advanced energy saving building materials must be a priority across all types of construction to successfully deliver on our nation’s most critical priorities.”
The vinyl replacement window products products will be manufactured in the company's Illinois and Pennsylvania facilities. Serious attracted significant national attention earlier this year, including recognition from President Barack Obama, when it acquired both the closed Republic Windows and Kensington Windows plants and reopened them with workers who had lost their jobs earlier this year.
Its Chicago facility was also visited by Vice President Joe Biden, who noted at the time that “the single greatest immediate impact on the environment that we can have as a nation, and the world can have, is weatherization. That’s the immediate biggest bang for the buck. It has the advantage of creating jobs, jobs right here in America.”
The ability to evaluate super-insulating windows was added to NEAT because windows are the biggest source of heating and cooling energy loss in homes. SeriousWindows WAP Series are the first, high performing replacement window designed specifically for WAP needs as a cost-effective energy efficiency and energy savings solution. By replacing existing windows with super-insulating, high R-value SeriousWindows, families can reduce their heating and cooling bills by up to 40 percent.