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Industry Trends5 min

Does a Radiant Barrier Really Work?

Homebuyers have shifted toward energy-efficient new homes in recent years, with energy efficiency among one of the most sought-after traits in new home construction. For homeowners, that gut feeling that a home is truly energy efficient becomes reality when they open the gas and electric bills at the end of the month.

What Is Radiant Barrier Sheathing?

On a hot summer day, the sun’s radiant energy hits the shingles and transfers its heat into the attic space. LP® TechShield® Radiant Barrier Sheathing—the first OSB radiant barrier in the industry—is made by laminating a thin, durable sheet of aluminum to LP OSB Sheathing. The purity of this aluminum means the radiant barrier prevents heat absorbed in the roof sheeting from radiating into the attic, blocking up to 97 % of the radiant heat in the panel from emitting into a home’s attic. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the radiant barrier’s ability to lower heat transfer keeps attic spaces cooler by up to 30 degrees, which can help curb energy costs. This can help improve the efficiency of in-attic HVAC units and reduce the tonnage of the entire system. 

How Radiant Barrier Sheathing Affects Temperature

Jeff Smith, a contractor rep for Builders First Source in Blairsville, Georgia agrees. Not only is Jeff a general contractor, he recently built his first new home. "After we installed LP TechShield Radiant Barrier, there was a noticeable difference in the attic space and the upper rooms of the house. Because LP TechShield is deflecting the heat, it's 15 to 20 degrees cooler in those areas than what you'd get with conventional OSB."

LP TechShield Sheathing Offers a Reliability Factor

In Dallas, Shaddock Homes has been building uniquely designed homes at a surprisingly low price point for over 50 years. As long-time loyalists to the LP TechShield brand, Shaddock Homes continues to choose LP TechShield sheathing over other radiant barrier sheathings on the market.

Shaddock Homes' Director of Purchasing Bill Pierce oversees material sourcing, contracting and budgeting, among other areas of operation. According to Pierce, "LP TechShield sheathing holds the brand recognition. People know about the product," said Pierce. We know we can count on it, and it is a very stable part of our construction process.” 

As a part of its energy-efficiency package, Shaddock Homes has included LP TechShield sheathing on all the homes it has built in the past six years. To learn more about this popular package, a case study is available.   

How to Install Radiant Barrier Sheathing

Installing LP TechShield sheathing requires no additional steps, like conventional roof sheathing and requiring no additional labor. Jeff Smith explains, "LP TechShield installs easily just like regular sheathing. It doesn't change the installation process at all."

Another LP customer and one of the nation’s largest homebuilders, KB Home sought a way to improve the standard offerings of its Built to Order homes that would improve energy efficiency and help the company meet ENERGY STAR® criteria for all of its new homes. KB Home became the first national builder to make LP TechShield Radiant Barrier Sheathing a standard feature on all of its new homes. 

“Features like LP TechShield sheathing open the door to further educate homebuyers on the availability of building materials with environmental benefits and long-term cost savings for them personally,” said Dan Bridleman, senior vice president of sustainability for KB Home. “In today’s market consumers want to understand the impact on the environment, but also need to see the cost benefit to their pocketbooks.”

Discussing what type of electric bill homeowners will get at the end of the month is a tremendous way to explain the value of LP TechShield sheathing to homeowners. According to Shaddock Homes' Bill Pierce, LP TechShield sheathing helps contribute to a home's value, livability and affordability. "At the end of the day when homeowners get their utility bill, it will be lower due in part to LP TechShield sheathing," said Pierce.

Need more reasons to sell LP TechShield Radiant Barrier Sheathing to your customers? Keep this list of top ten reasons to install in mind:

  1. America’s original and #1 brand of radiant barrier sheathing
  2. 20-Year Transferable Limited Warranty
  3. Reduces attic temperature by up to 30 degrees Fahrenheit
  4. Can account for additional points and result in an overall lower HERS score
  5. Blocks up to 97 % of the radiant heat transfer through roof sheathing
  6. Patented VaporVents technology with post-lamination incising allows panel to dry more quickly than other radiant barrier sheathing
  7. Installs like conventional roof sheathing, requiring no additional labor
  8. Cost-effective way to make a home more energy efficient
  9. May help qualify for Green Building credits
  10. Installed in more than 2 million homes

 

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