Tip Number 3 – Insulate With Cellulose Now
For a cooler summer check your attic insulation and ductwork
Doug Rye
King of Caulk
and Talk

This month, we are looking at energy efficiency improvement tip Number 3. I assume you have read energy improvement tip Number 1 - the installation of a water heater insulating blanket, and energy efficiency improvement tip Number 2 - the purchase of compact fluorescent lights. Many of you have let me know that you did those. If you haven’t done them, you should go back and do so.

Now for energy efficiency improvement tip Number 3. Summer is almost here and your attic is heating up and your air conditioning unit will soon be running hard. This also means that your electric meter will be spinning away. Did you know that during the summer your attic could get hotter than the desert? To keep that summer heat from toasting your house and draining your pocketbook, let’s add cellulose insulation NOW.

If you have less than nine inches of insulation in your attic, add cellulose insulation until you have at least 12 inches installed.

Why cellulose, you ask? Simply put, cellulose, which is made from recycled newspapers, is the best choice for attic insulation.

If at all possible, inspect any ductwork located in your attic for leaks before adding the insulation. You can do this by turning the thermostat to “fan on.” Dampen your finger and move it along your ductwork and feel for leaks. Start at the unit and go to the end of each section of duct.

While you are working in the attic, please remember to be careful so that you don’t fall through the ceiling. Many serious accidents occur while working in attics!

You may find that some of the duct system leaks are so bad that you can see and hear them. Once you find a leak, seal it. Do not use regular duct tape, however. Instead use duct mastic or metallic duct tape.

Now add the insulation. If your ductwork is lying directly on your ceiling rafters, spray the cellulose over the ductwork.

If you live near one of the larger home improvement stores, you may be able to buy the cellulose insulation and install it yourself. If not, there are companies located across the state that will install cellulose insulation for you. Just check the Yellow Pages of your phonebook.

Why do I say, “Do it now?” The answer is simple. If we have our typically hot summer, you could easily save a good percentage on your cooling costs by the end of the summer.

In addition, be sure to keep your invoice for the insulation purchases because this improvement should qualify for a tax deduction for 2007. The tax deduction, combined with your energy savings for the summer, could possibly pay for this improvement by the end of the first summer.

Tax credits are available for many types of home improvements including adding insulation, replacement windows, and certain high efficiency heating and cooling equipment. The maximum amount of homeowner credit for all improvements combined is $500 during the two-year period of the tax credit. This tax credit applies to improvements made to your primary residence from Jan. 1, 2006 through Dec. 31, 2007.

So don’t delay. Do it NOW!

In the meantime, please remember you can call me at the office at 501-653-7931 with any other energy efficiency questions you may have.

P.S. Aren’t you glad we have cooling systems in our homes? I simply could not live without it.

You’ve heard him on the radio. You’ve read his column in this magazine. Now see him in person!

Doug Rye will be visiting southern Illinois to help you lower your utility bills.

The electric cooperatives of southern Illinois are hosting three Residential Energy Audit Workshops.

Residential Energy Audit Workshops, 6:30 p.m. Please call to reserve seating.
April 9, 2007
Hecker Community Center, Hecker 800-757-7433
April 10, 2007
World Shooting Complex, Sparta 800-606-1505
April 11, 2007
Shawnee Community College, Ullin 800-762-1400

Stay tuned for more from Doug Rye
The “Doctor of Energy Efficiency—the King of Caulk and Talk”

In the mean time you can go to his Web site:
E-mail him at
or call (888)-Doug-Rye or (501) 653-7931

You can also sign up for a free newsletter and order his “how to” videotapes.

You can now listen to my radio show live on the Internet at 9:05 a.m. on Saturdays. Just go to