So, ok. We’ve been through the Cash for Clunkers program. Stay tuned for…
Cash For Caulkers
Or… leveraging economic stimulus funding for old house home owners.
I received the following from Adrian Fine who is a director at the Center for State and Local Policy at the National Trust. It would seem that historic home owners may be misinformed about ineligibility of storm windows for tax credit. Not surprisingly, it is usually a window replacement contractor who tells them this.
So here’s the deal….
Question: Do storm windows/doors qualify for the $1,500 tax credit.
Despite some confusion and misleading information, storm windows and doors do qualify for the tax credit. This chart from the U.S. Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency and Energy Star clearly lists storm windows/doors as eligible products for the tax credit.
Question: Are all storm windows/doors eligible?
As stated earlier, the 2009/2010 provisions established a higher standard than in 2007 and all eligible storm windows/doors (purchased from June 1, 2009 to December 31, 2010) must have a U-value of 0.30 or lower and solar heat gain coefficient of 0.30 or lower. Here’s where the main problem lies regarding questions on eligibility. While it is common for new windows to offer specific qualifications regarding performance, it is a difficult to assess for storm windows/doors. Measuring the U-value and solar heat gain of storm windows/doors depends on the performance of the existing window in combination with a storm window, which will always be a case-by-case basis. This can only be tested after storm windows/doors are installed and will vary greatly from building to building.
While some storm window/door manufacturers are marketing their products in conjunction with the tax credit, others are not because the performance standard is difficult to substantiate for all cases. Some are listing classes of exterior windows (single pane, clear glass, double pane, low-E coating, etc.) that a product may be combined with to be eligible in specific climate zones (for a map, go to http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter/dbimages/full/973.jpg).
Question: What do I need to claim the tax credit?
Answer: Manufacturer’s Certification Statement
A Manufacturer’s Certification Statement is a signed statement from the manufacturer certifying that the product or component qualifies for the tax credit. Taxpayers must keep a copy of the certification statement for their records, but do not have to submit a copy with their tax return. Some manufacturers are providing these Certificates on their website. Other manufacturers are not, taking a more conservation approach and not issuing these certificates since it’s difficult to substantiate on a case-by-case basis. Though there are others, two storm window/door manufacturers that do provide certificates are Gorell (http://www.gorell.com/pages/energy_tax_incentive_act.htm) and Kaufmann (http://www.kaufmannwindow.com/2009energytaxcredit.htm).
As always, please check with your tax advisor for advice.
**Also, for more information on the stimulus funding, and constantly-expanding case studies, check out the Perfect Storm webpage(s) on PreservationNation
For more information visit the National Trust website > The Perfect Storm
Or contact Adrian directly at: Adrian_Fine@nthp.org
Saw this and had to share. This is too cool, at least for me.
Before the advent of electric powered manufacturing it was all done by steam or water powered, belt driven machines. I’ve seen pics of belt-driven manufacturing here in Beloit.
Anyway, there’s a woodworking company that restores and puts back into production belt-driven woodworking machines for their window and related products manufacturing.
Not a Luddite. I enjoy and work in new technologies. I am though astounded by the level of sophistication of early manufacturing. Early industrial design had an elegance to it. Note the decorative striping on the machines. Also note, both father and son in the video had all their digits. Wonder how common or not that may have been “back in the day”.
Just saw some great videos produced by the Kansas SHPO (State Historic Preservation Offices).
For decades, consumers have been led to believe that replacing their old wood windows with new vinyl, metal or clad windows will improve their home. Replacement windows have been marketed as energy efficient, and therefore environmentally friendly, and economical, by saving the homeowner money over the lifespan of the window. In reality, properly repaired wood windows can be equally energy efficient, are more environmentally friendly, are a better financial investment, and preserve one of the most important character-defining features of a historic home.
Wood Window Introduction:
Anatomy of a Window:
Sash Cord Repair:
Heat rises. Most heat loss is through the roof, not the windows. Remaining heat loss from windows is largely due to drafty windows that can be repaired, NOT from radiation from the glass as those selling it would have us believe. Yes, insulated glass radiates less heat loss but at what cost? What’s the incremental savings from heat radiation? Not much. Old house homeowners are spending a dollar to save a dime. They’re buying into an immense and unified marketing message from manufacturers, retailer and installers… Why repair your windows when you can buy what we’re selling? They’re being snookered.
For professionals interested in learning this skill or homeowners interested in do-it-yourself there is training available.
Belvedere School – Window Restoration College
For those who’d rather hire a professional who knows how to repair old windows…
Watch this space. I’ve got some leads I’m chasing down. I’ll also be updating this to our Old House Services page.
Window Restoration Contractors:
Mulligan Restoration Inc.
128 W. River St.
Rockton, IL. 61072
Phone and fax (815)964-4210
For many smaller projects, it is more cost effective to use a local contractor. The skills to restore windows that need basic maintenance (painting and weather stripping) are not that difficult for a trained carpenter. However, if the sash are seriously deteriorated and need epoxy repairs and custom replacement parts, it is better to use a specialist.
Window Repair Resources:
This is a very well illustrated and well written guide to essential window repairs.
Save Your Wood Windows by John Leek
Preservation Brief 9: “The Repair of Historic Wooden Windows” by the National Park Service:
Lead Paint Safety:
Virtually all old wood windows have lead paint. It is not necessary or required to have a lead abatement contractor do this work unless your project has federal funding from the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The following downloadable publication (Lead Paint Safety: A Field Guide for Painting, Maintenance and Home Renovation) covers most of the practical methods of doing renovation work and working lead-safe:
~ Illinois Historic Preservation Agency
Some of you likely know AndyF from the neighborhood. Our kids and his attend school and play together.
Anyway, just saw this on his own blog and thought it clever and amusing. My Old House Window Project.
I particularly enjoy the before, during and after photos. Speaking of which… I’d love to be able to post before/after pics of projects you’ve done in and around you own home. If you’ve got something to share please let me know.
I’m simply reprinting below something I’d seen from Bob Yapp, an architectural restoration professional practicing here in the midwest. There’s an entire industry with it’s own marketing message intent on convincing homeowners that they need replacement windows. Since the advent of planned obsolescence it may be a more compelling argument. For many old house homeowners however you’ve options…
This presentation is in three parts. The rest located here.
(An interesting little aside… I just found out the individual who recorded the above video is a Beloit College alum who has fond remembrances of our historic community and is now serving as the Historic Preservation Planner for the city of Geneva IL. If you’ve ever been there you know Geneva is a very nice upscale community with a very active preservation presence.)
Be sure to catch part 2. He touches on ROI relative to expected effective life of these windows as cited by manufacturers. Hmmmm.
There’s a lot of talk these day about being environmentally “green”. So, what does it all mean and why should we care?