Tuesday, March 10, 2009

New Energy Efficiency Guidelines for Federal Tax Credits!

As many of you know, the government is working hard to give us some of our money back (I know, don't laugh too hard!). The government has reinstated and even INCREASED the amount of the tax credits for 2009. Unfortunately, you are out of luck for 2008.


Since I am a window contractor, I am going to concentrate on the window rebate that is available to you.

Many people think that if a windows carries the Energy Star logo, then it qualifies. WRONG! They slipped this one by us! A window that was just fine a year ago, doesn't qualify for the rebate, but still can carry the Energy Star logo. Confusing? You bet!


All new windows come with a sticker that shows the window's performance data. It's similar to a window sticker on a new car where it shows the estimated MPG data. The numbers on this sticker are very important.

SHGC (Solar Heat Gain Coefficient): The SHGC is the fraction of incident solar radiation admitted through a window, both admitted through a window, both directly transmitted, and absorbed and subsequently released inward. SHGC is expressed as a number between 0 and 1. The lower a window's solar heat gain coefficient, the less solar heat it transmits.

The current acceptable limit set forth by the government is: Less than or equal to .30

U-Factor: A measure of the rate of non-solar heat loss or gain through a material or assembly. It is expressed in units of Btu/hr-sq ft-°F (W/sq m-°C). Values are normally given for NFRC/ASHRAE winter conditions of 0° F (18° C) outdoor temperature, 70° F (21° C) indoor temperature, 15 mph wind, and no solar load. The U-factor may be expressed for the glass alone or the entire window, which includes the effect of the frame and the spacer materials. The lower the U-factor, the greater a window's resistance to heat flow and the better its insulating value.

The current acceptable limis set forth by the government is: Less than or equal to .30

As you can see on this label, this window WOULD NOT qualify for the rebate!

Many window manufacturers DO NOT currently meet these limits! Make sure you do your homework!

All manufacturers will be meeting these parameters very soon. Guess what? It costs more to meet the guidelines and it causes the window prices to rise. With one hand they give a credit, and the other hand takes it away. Oh well, that's our government!

Calculating your actual rebate goes something like this: You get 30% of the window COST with a limit of $1,500. This does not include installation! This means you would have to spend $5,000 to max out your rebate. Remember, the $1,500 limit includes ALL projects that qualify for the rebate. For many homes, this will be no problem.
Stay informed!
Of course I install windows! If you live around the Kansas City Area, you can find me here: http://www.paintproinc.net
Thanks for reading.

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