Custom Cabinetry - Cape Elizabeth, Maine - Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Custom Cabinetry - Cape Elizabeth, Maine - Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Rook Energy Solutions was recently commissioned to create some organization in an underutilized storage room at a home in Cape Elizabeth, ME.  Not only did we create a huge amount of storage space, but the new full-height custom cabinets match the aesthetic of the room quite nicely.

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Basement Renovation - Falmouth, Maine - Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Basement Renovation - Falmouth, Maine - Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

One of our recent Contracting and Home Improvement jobs in which we finished a section of our clients basement. We insulated and air sealed the space, built a new dividing wall, moved a central vac system, added electrical, hung drywall, painted, etc....

It is now a very comfortable, and easy to heat space!

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Attic and Basement Insulation - Yarmouth, Maine - Weatherization Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Attic and Basement Insulation - Yarmouth, Maine - Weatherization Services - Rook Energy Solutions

The goal of the homeowner was to get off of oil for their primary heating fuel, and instead heat with a central air source heat pump system with electric backup. Rook Energy Solutions did a full weatherization retrofit of the attics, basement and crawlspaces.  Insulation was removed to allow for thorough air sealing of all attic bypasses, and new Thermax rigid board, closed cell spray foam and cellulose was installed.  A new vapor barrier was installed over the exposed dirt in the crawlspaces.

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Exterior Wall Insulation - Portland, Maine - Weatherization Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Exterior Wall Insulation - Portland, Maine - Weatherization Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Before the project began, the homeowner felt many drafts coming from all areas of his home, especially when strong winds blew directly in from the ocean.  They wondered why it would still be so drafty, even after the home was re-insulated with fiberglass and the lathe-and-plaster walls replaced with sheet rock.  Rook Energy Solutions was brought in to perform a blower door test and scan with an infrared camera.  It turns out air was travelling through the exterior walls and between floors with little obstruction, severely devaluing the insulation. 

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Low Income Weatherization Program - South Portland, Maine - Weatherization Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Rook Energy Solutions has been selected from a competitive field of home performance contractors in Greater Portland to implement the City of South Portland’s low-income weatherization program. Services accepted for this program range from energy assessments and air sealing to basement and attic insulation.  Typically, the City of South Portland has been able to serve an estimated 7-10 households per year.  With the help of Efficiency Maine’s new Low Income Home Energy Savings Program (LIHESP), Rook Energy Solutions and the City of South Portland has the potential to complete energy assessments and air sealing for as many as 100 homes.

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Exercise Equipment Installation - Falmouth, Maine - Handyman & Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Exercise Equipment Installation - Falmouth, Maine - Handyman & Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

During a recent renovation project we were working on, the homeowner had a couple pieces of exercise equipment that they would rather have had us install for them than go through the trouble themselves.  Not everyone has access to power tools and the ability to drill into concrete! 

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The Importance of Air Sealing Attics Before Insulation - South Portland, ME - Rook Energy Solutions

The Importance of Air Sealing Attics Before Insulation - South Portland, ME - Rook Energy Solutions

When choosing to insulate an attic, one of the important questions to ask:  is insulation just being blown over the existing insulation, or is insulation removal and air sealing included in the estimate? With minimal air sealing, and adding insulation over existing material without air sealing first, homeowners will not got the results they desire and their retrofit can fall well short of being truly effective for the life of the improvement.

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Custom Stair Gates - Portland, Maine - Handyman & Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

Custom Stair Gates - Portland, Maine - Handyman & Home Improvement Services - Rook Energy Solutions

 

We’ve recently been installing custom made stair gates for customers with tricky stair cases, which are easy to find in the Greater Portland, ME area. These stair cases have a step that extends beyond the railing into the hallway, making it very difficult to install store bought gates. They can be used to deter crawling babies, rambunctious toddlers, animals, etc. The gates shown below were made out of softwoods such as Spruce and Pine, but we can easily upgrade the gates and match a specific aesthetic with hardwoods such as oak and maple. There are a variety of options available for clasps and hinges depending on the gates primary function (pet or child), they are completely customize-able and easy for our technicians to install. All gates will meet code specifications for height and baluster spacing. 

Our handyman and home improvement crews not only have extensive carpentry, contracting and furniture building experience, but we all have families and fully understand how a sturdy these gates need to be in order to function properly with years of excessive use. These gates can also easily be removed when not needed any longer, and with a little touching up to the floor you'd barely be able to see that they were installed in the first place. 

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Home Improvement - Handyman: Window & Door Installation - Kitchen renovation - Attic Insulation - Shake Siding | Biddeford Pool, Maine | Rook Energy Solutions

Home Improvement - Handyman: Window & Door Installation - Kitchen renovation - Attic Insulation - Shake Siding | Biddeford Pool, Maine | Rook Energy Solutions

This was a great Home Improvement project in Biddeford Pool, Maine. The home owner has a baby on the way and wanted to get many projects out of the way prior. The work scope included re-configuring the kitchin to install a door leading the porch by moving a kitchen sink and counter. We also transitioned an enclosed porch into a functional bedroom by installing insulation in the attic, enclosing a window and adding awning windows followed by shake work on the exterior of the house. Finally, we installed an exterior door into the basement for easier access for the home owner. A perfect Home Improvement job for Rook Energy Solutions.

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Basement & Attic Insulation| Ranch Style Home | Biddeford, ME | Rook Energy Solutions

Basement & Attic Insulation| Ranch Style Home | Biddeford, ME | Rook Energy Solutions

UPDATE: This home was weatherized in 2012 - the home owner has reported ~30% savings annually from their pre-weatherization heating bills.

This small ranch in Biddeford offered many of the same issues that we regularly see in a New England home; excessive fiberglass insulation with mismanaged airflow leading to devalued insulation. The home owner complained of ice damming issues, drafty spots, and high energy bills.

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Home Energy Audit | Attic & Basement Insulation | Portland, Maine

Home Energy Audit | Attic & Basement Insulation | Portland, Maine

This energy audit depicts classic cape and bungalow solutions dealing with knee wall, enclosed slope and attic flat insulation issues. 

In December we performed an energy audit on this small, very nice home that really needs some weatherization attention. Recently moved in less than one year ago, the homeowners had already experienced high heating costs, drafty and inconsistent heating, and bad ice damming issues. With the inefficiencies we found they will also no doubt experience hot temperatures in the 2nd floor bedrooms this summer - all stemming from insufficient R Value (amount of insulation) and air leakage leading to devalued insulation.

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Attic Insulation | Spray Foam Insulation | Portland, ME | Rook Energy Solutions

Attic Insulation | Spray Foam Insulation | Portland, ME | Rook Energy Solutions

This case study focuses on cathedral ceiling solutions due to ice dams and water damage from low quality insulation, mismanaged airflow and devalued insulation.

This clients primary concerns for having an Energy Audit and subsequent Weatherization solutions were improving overall energy inefficiencies and seasonal comforts. Like many other home owners, they new their home was insulated with ample amounts of fiberglass batting, they just couldn't understand why there home was hot in the summer, cold in the winter, and why their bills were so high. They even installed a metal roof as they were tired of dealing with ice damming issues.

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Energy Audit | Falmouth, Maine | Classic Cape Attic Insulation | Rook Energy Solutions

Energy Audit | Falmouth, Maine | Classic Cape Attic Insulation | Rook Energy Solutions

This case study shows an energy audit done on a Cape style home in Falmouth, Maine. Maine has an abundance of Cape homes that even today are being built with improper insulation selection and poor ventilation management. In detail, this study showcases the overwhelming issues with Cape style homes and why they are so susceptible to ice dams, high energy bills and seasonal discomfort. 

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Energy Audit | Scarborough, Maine | Attic Insulation & Air Leakage | Rook Energy Solutions

Energy Audit | Scarborough, Maine | Attic Insulation & Air Leakage | Rook Energy Solutions

Most New England homes have a sea of fiberglass batting insulation in them. Even with 6,8, or even 10" or more of fiberglass insulation, if the conditions are not right then that insulation will be severely devalued. What is the wrong condition for fiberglass insulation? Any scenario where air is allowed to move through it. When air moves through fiberglass it strips it of its ability to hold heat. So when you vent an attic and introduce cold air into an attic space, you're effectively promoting the devalued performance of your fiberglass insulation.

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Energy Audit | Portland, Maine | Basement Moisture | Rook Energy Solutions

Energy Audit | Portland, Maine | Basement Moisture | Rook Energy Solutions

This Energy Audit shows many normal issues found in Maine homes - basement moisture. We show photos from the home and give recommendations on improving the moisture concerns. 

Balancing energy efficient solutions within a home and maintaining a healthy home should be the goal within every energy audit. In dealing with retrofit scenarios, especially in New England homes, moisture management should be one of the most important focal points. If a home owner air seals and insulates a home with moisture issues, mold can grow, and in the worst scenarios it can overwhelm a home.

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