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Where the New “R” Will Come From

Midland Michigan is headquarters to Dow Building Solutions, manufacturer of insulation products. I recently visited an entire street of houses Dow built there, wired to the rafters to measure the moisture content, temperature and air control of the homes under real world conditions.

The testing is pointing to a ground-breaking conclusion: The industry must completely revamp the way it measures home efficiency and comfort. I’ve said it before: R values published on products that were determined in a lab are terrible indicators of how that product will perform in place. Even the vaunted Energy Star system will need another look after researchers and companies like Dow are done. In the mean time, you consumer, need to educate yourself and demand better.

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