Monday, September 5, 2011

THE Enormous BOW Window

When looking for a new bow window for the front of their home, Mr. & Mrs.  Henson had a hard time finding a local company who was willing to do the job. Why you ask?   Well, not many people are in the market for a bow window that is over 11 feet wide and 6 feet tall! After being turned down by other local home improvement companies, the Hensons were visited by Reynolds Exteriors.  We did not turn away and say the window they wanted was too massive of a project to take on; we knew we could make them happy and deliver them the special window they wanted on the front of their home.

The window we replaced was falling apart and costing them a lot of money on their electric bill.  The wood framing and interior wood seat were deteriorating and caving in around certain sections.

Requiring a forklift to move it,  we wanted to ensure the bow was installed with the utmost care and precision. When you are dealing with something of this size, this is extremely important.  Also, Mrs. Henson expressed concern over her bushes under the window being damaged during the installation. The forklift also aided in helping our crew install the bow without a single branch being hurt.

Upon completion, the new bow window looked fantastic and we were very happy to have helped the Hensons get exactly what they wanted for their home!


Monday, August 15, 2011

Insulated Siding Makeovers

Siding is one of the best ways to transform your home's appearance. Not only does you home receive a brand new look it also recieves a brand new way to save energy. One of the best ways to reduce your fuel bills is to defend your home against the elements.

Reynolds Exteriors exclusively offers Sovereign Select® Energy Smart™ Siding by Revere which utilizes the insulating power of Fullback® Siding Insulation to help block the transfer of hot and cold air, expertly achieving year-round energy savings. This patented, contoured foam insulation eliminates voids behind the siding panel that can cause energy loss. Revere siding also helps shield your home from impact damage, extremes of weather, mold growth, termite nesting and noise infiltration. With Sovereign Select® Energy Smart™, your home will have an exceptionally weather-tight exterior that's beautiful and strong.

Take a look at these Before and After photos from our friends and business associates Progressive Foam Technologies to get an idea of how your home can be transformed into a beautiful energy saving investment.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Vinyl Siding vs. Other Cladding Alternatives

As the leading exterior cladding, vinyl siding takes it share of criticism from representatives of competing products. Unfortunately, much of what they claim about vinyl siding is outdated, inaccurate or misleading.

As you weigh exterior cladding options to incorporate in your next home improvement project, be sure you have all the facts. Vinyl siding is the number one choice of exterior cladding across the United States and Canada

Take a moment to review the side-by-side, "apples to apples" comparisons provided here.

*Click the photo to enlarge-- Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Exterior Wood Trim and Wood Rot

Homeowners often select an improvement feature for it's looks without considering the time and cost to maintain the it. Most homes bought today have exposed wood trim all around the house. Wood trim is vulnerable to wood rot because it sticks out from your house. This means it’s exposed to more wind, sunlight, rain and other elements than most of your home. If you don’t consistently inspect and paint on a yearly basis then the exposed wood is open to water penetration and wood rot begins. A simple and cost effective solution is to have your wood trim wrapped with metal. These metals come in a variety of colors so you can be creative.

We pick exterior trim for our homes as a way of adding beauty and appeal to our home. It is true that a home needs dressing up and the most common features include a dressy front door, landscaping and shutters. Fortunately most new shutters are vinyl and don’t need painting, just cleaning. Choosing to trim your home 's wood is also a way to add beauty and curb appeal at the same time as adding value and protection.

Let’s look at a few examples of wood rot, what happened and why, so that you will have a better idea of what to look for and where to begin wrapping your wood with metal.
  • Bay windows are lovely and they bring extra sunlight into your home. They also use a lot more wood so painting them, especially if it can’t be done from the ground, becomes a home maintenance chore that can easily be deferred until you have serious damage like the window shown here. With bay windows, one option is to use a vinyl clad window to reduce your risk of wood rot and many of these offer a wood interior option.
  • Columns are a popular option to dress up the front entryway, deck or many outdoor settings. Obviously, if you home has wodden comlumns or railing then you already are aware of the strict painting schedule required to keep their appeal. Vinyl Columns and railing are becoming extremely popular ways to replace old wooden columns and railing; they require no painting, just cleaning and will always maintain a clean and attractive look.
  • Corner boards give depth to your home’s exterior. On houses with wood siding, the corner boards are made of wood most of the time. These types of trim stick out from your home, making them more vulnerable to wood rot. Check out this BEFORE picture and the AFTER from our "before and afters" and you will see what we mean.
  • When the Victorian in the lower right corner was built around 1900, the intricate trim finishes, varied siding and decorative ledges where common. Owners painted the Victorian accent pieces in different colors and they popped to create that “Victorian” look and feel. Beautiful to look at but challenging to maintain as you can see here, needing scaffolding to replace rotted trim and siding on the third floor. Modern types of siding made with materials that resist the elements can be put on your home in a combination of ways to give it a one of a kind look.


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Eisenhower House at Kaneohe Bay Equipped with Insulated Siding

HONOLULU — The historic Eisenhower House at the Kaneohe Bay Marine base has been equipped with solar power and has undergone renovations to make it exceptionally energy efficient.

The house gets its name from the fact President Dwight D. Eisenhower stayed there for five days in 1960 after a tour of Asia.

It's now the home of base commanding officer Col. Robert Rice, who opened the house to guests during a ceremony last Wednesday.

That energy produced by the solar panels on the roof is expected to equal the amount of energy the home consumes during a year, making it a "Net Zero Energy" house.

The home now has insulated vinyl siding, energy filtering window film, and a highly efficient air conditioning system.


View the article at

Insulated Siding

Insulated siding was recently featured in an article on, a new website targeted to consumers to help them save money by using "green" and energy-saving products. This is great publicity for the product category and will hopefully generate additional interest from environmentally conscious homeowners! Below is the full article from


Insulated siding = durable cladding and secure seal


insulated siding

Standards for energy efficiency are rising – a good thing. But with those rising standards comes a more competitive green marketplace.

Take, for instance, insulation. There are new insulative products popping up every year because, let’s face it: sealing your home is complicated! Once you’ve learned some of the key terms – R-values, VOCs, batts and blower-door tests (for starters) – you’re tasked with sorting through all the options.

Well, add another one to the list.

Insulated siding has been on the rise for over a decade and continues to gain traction with homebuilders. The idea seems simple, intuitive and incredibly practical: mix the exterior cladding (one material layered over another) of vinyl siding with the thermal seal provided by insulation in one product. Though insulated siding is not intended as a stand-alone insulation solution, the product is designed to prevent thermal bridging through your studs.

Smart design is nifty, but is it saving you money on heating and utility bills? Recent studies point out that insulated siding can reduce heating and cooling energy use by 1 - 4 percent. To put that in perspective: adding the product to your home will save about 5.5 times more energy than replacing a pre-1993 refrigerator with a newer, more efficient unit.

For homebuilders and DIY retrofitters alike who are searching for the most effective energy-saving solutions, insulated siding seems like a promising product. It packs the weatherization of cladding with the energy-saving qualities of insulation all in one punch.

Pushing Green had questions, of course, so we talked with Matt Dobson, Code and & Regulatory Director of the Vinyl Siding Institute. He fleshed out the basics of insulated siding and its reception within the homebuilding industry.

PG: LEED certification is becoming a major objective for many builders. Could insulated siding fit into the LEED model for homebuilders?

MD: The LEED for Homes program doesn’t recognize many cladding products, but insulated siding is one of the few claddings out there that scores [up to three] points for you.

Also, under the National Green Building standards, insulated siding is one that can get more points than any other cladding out there.

PG: As an energy-saving product designed for the building’s exterior, is insulated siding considered a form of continuous insulation?

MD: It is a type of continuous insulation, but it’s important to recognize that it’s separate from continuous insulation. Continuous insulation is really more foam sheathing insulation, whereas insulated siding is a combination of both.

It’s a great retrofit product because you don’t need to dig too deeply into the walls. It’s relatively easy to take existing siding off and put insulated siding on, versus other existing energy efficiency techniques which are a little more invasive to the building envelope.

Continuous insulation is wrapping the outside of the house, and so insulated siding would be a compliment to the cavity insulation. For existing applications, this would act as a compliment to what’s already in place.

PG: When we talk about insulation, we have to talk about R-Values. What R-value can consumers expect for most insulated siding?insulated siding different colors

MD: The foam insulation’s R-value is currently anywhere between 2-3 and it is a higher density insulation than cavity insulation like, say, fiberglass. But it’s really very similar to other types of insulation or foam sheathing.

However, the installation of insulated siding doesn’t require as much labor because it’s one application. Whereas if you were to install an insulated sheathing in a vinyl siding, you’d actually have a two-step scenario where you’d be applying the insulated sheathing and the vinyl siding on top of that.

PG: Why might an alternative product like insulated siding appeal to builders weighing the cost-benefit angles among hundreds of insulation options?

MD: As energy efficiency standards are rising, builders are looking for alternative ways to achieve those standards. For example, in some climate zones, the insulation requirements may be so high that a builder may have to install a 2x6 wall versus a 2x4 wall, but if they go to an insulated siding product, they can actually achieve those higher energy efficiency levels, keep the framing size where it is and reduce thermal bridging. So it’s looked at as a viable option to meet these higher energy requirements.

Like vinyl siding, insulated siding is relatively easy to install. We actually have a certified installer program, where we have installers who go through a pretty rigorous training program and have to become certified. If the consumer is handy, that’s one thing, but if they’re looking for a qualified installer, our certified installer program is certainly a good resource.

But it is a light product. It’s easy to handle. It’s a little bit more difficult to cut than regular vinyl siding because it’s thicker, but it’s not any different – unlike the fiber cement product, where if you’re cutting that product it puts off silica dust. Vinyl siding, you can just cut without any worries of any problems with the environment.

Sealing of the home is a really big deal – not just for energy efficiency but for comfort. We’re actually seeing a big improvement in air sealing because of the way the product fits against the wall.

PG: Federal tax credits have motivated many consumers to focus on energy-saving products when making home improvements. Does insulated siding meet any tax credit guidelines?

MD: Unfortunately, insulated siding doesn’t currently qualify for the tax credit, because its only role isn’t as a home insulated, it’s also siding. But besides the tax credit, it has been shown to reduce the energy bills and improve energy efficiency.
**Reynolds Exteriors uses a dropin insulated siding which DOES qualify for the tax credit. The laminated insulated style of siding referenced above does NOT qualify for this credit.

PG: Insulated siding is generally composed of expanded polystyrene, which may not be the greenest material (compared with the cellulose options offered for interior insulation). Are there other materials being considered for insulated siding?

MD: Generally speaking, it’s been expanded polystyrene. Cellulose would be difficult to have on the exterior because of the potential moisture issues. It’s really a foam plastic application at this point. I think the industry’s seeing the foam plastic as the best option for exterior application because of its durability under the conditions.

VOCs have not really been an issue with vinyl siding at all – there’s not really any off-gassing. There have been some excellent improvements in how the product reacts to ultraviolet in recent years. The VOCs aren’t that much of an issue. The product is incredible as far as durability goes and can last 15-20 years.

Thanks Matt!

So, what do you think, Pushing Green? Would you consider using insulated siding on your home?

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