The Era of You

No one is coming to help us. Only we can help ourselves. We have inherited a built world that makes much waste. Yet this built world can be made better by us because we built it.

Is it more realistic to wish for all new efficient structures and better roads, or to repair what is already here? A hypothetical perfect home won’t help you now, but solutions like CanCoverIt will because they are designed for the world that already exists, not the world we wish we had.

CanCoverIt emerged out of a pressing need to solve the old style non insulation contact can-light dilemma: they leak air by design, but this is very inefficient. It was just way too expensive and wasteful to tear out and replace millions of fixtures, so we invented a fix for the problem that lets the fixture stay right where it is.

Turns out that the more modern airtight insulation contact fixtures did not help the energy leak problem either (they even cause new problems) because it was not just air that leaked, but radiant heat energy itself. Thus we need to fix all can-lights: they all leak energy. Once again we can fix them all right where they are: just put a CanCoverIt over top and be done.

We believe in real, actionable, common sense upgrades; and we believe in the power of you.

The time has come for us people to look at ourselves more truthfully: we are more like coral polyps than we are gods. We don’t plan out grand visions and execute them, we build what we can where we are with what we have.

We can argue about how the whole reef should look or we can get to work improving the reef we already live in – indeed this is the only real path to a better tomorrow for the climate.

If you are a homeowner, install CanCoverIt in your attic, save up some money from your heating/cooling bill reduction then upgrade to solar tiles on your roof and other systems.

If you’re a renter try talking with your landlord to get CanCoverIt and other efficiency upgrades installed in your building, it will benefit them and you. Maybe they’ll even see that they could use their properties as solar farms and make even more because their buildings are more efficient so more power is being sold, all while you enjoy a $0 electric bill and peace of mind.

It takes just minutes to upgrade your house with CanCoverIt, and you can even get someone to do it for you. You can be an example in your community because you took the few minutes to upgrade your home and then you tell others of your savings and comfort improvement.  There are over 130 million homes in the US, if they all reduced their energy usage by half overnight we will have just won a major battle. And it didn’t require any generals, just smart individuals. Complex government programs are not required when the solution is as low-cost and easy as CanCoverIt. But they could help accelerate!

Our existing customers represent this. They found us because they wanted to improve their home’s comfort, or fix dripping water from their airtight can-lights, and all wanted to save energy by reducing their heating and cooling costs. Now they’re part of a movement of common sense upgrades that can sweep the nation and the world.

Get your friends excited about what can be done, don’t spend so much time bemoaning what can’t be done or bickering over what should be done. It is fine to talk about ideals, but where the rubber meets the road we find ourselves each behind our own steering wheel. And the deepest wisdom is that examples of action change the world far faster than any sermon.

No one is making you upgrade your home and start making more sustainable choices, but I think that you already know that. I think you’re starting to suspect that this is the era of you, and maybe you’re even starting to get excited about how you can make your little patch of the reef more beautiful and sustainable.

Now imagine if everyone cleaned up their act like you… Let’s make it happen, you are the key.

The Evolving Science of Penetration Treatment

Penetration treatment is an evolving science and as such there is still a good deal of confusion regarding best practice standards. That said, changing standards takes time and it should particularly when safety is involved.

The 3” clearance standard is one of the evolving areas that needs better clarification; however the intent has been, and still is, to safely managing light bulb generated heat.

Can-Lights leak energy if not treated with CanCoverIt.

When first introduced decades ago fixtures used incandescent bulbs that have 4000F filament heat. Even a 60 watt incandescent bulb can reach 500 degrees F and wattage in use then was as high as 150 watt.  

Allowing that extreme heat to escape was critically important, however the exact science of how the 3” space was reached is somewhat unclear; but again the clear intent was to prevent dangerous heat entrapment.   

Even then the requirement for 3” clearance from the wiring compartment was debatable. Tests show that the housing functions as a heat sink for the heat source centered within and the air separation between the housing and the wiring compartment does not directly conduct but rather is subjected only to diffused radiant energy within the air space. Ironically that basic physics and need to separate the junction box from the heat sink to keep the compartment from overheating was well understood by the engineers that designed the fixtures.

With the introduction of insulation contact rated fixtures this 3” requirement was obviously eliminated even though the fixtures were identical except for lower wattage light bulb use.  

We now know that insulation contact with the fixture causes many unintended problems beyond light bulb heat and that fixtures must be effectively isolated from the attic space and incorporated into conditioned air space.

Insulation Contact airtight Can-Lights do not help the core problem of radiant energy transfer, and IC Can-Lights cause unintended problems unless treated with CanCoverIt.

That means that clearance understanding is evolving to better address actual heat transfer and diffusion within the system.

CanCoverIt™’s square/rectangular shape makes it easy to install but more importantly the shape is critical to optimize diffusion air space volume within space confinements. (Conversely a round shape provides about 21% less air volume around the fixture and therefore less effective heat diffusion space.) Again the more specific objective for clearance specs is to safely manage light bulb heat.

CanCoverIt™'s Venting allows any wattage bulbs to still be used, and conditions the ambient environment around the fixture, allowing LEDs to last their full operating life.

CanCoverIt™'s Venting allows any wattage bulbs to still be used, and conditions the ambient environment around the fixture, allowing LEDs to last their full operating life.

Heat management regarding newer fixtures is already aided by the fact that the light bulb generated heat is lower and therefore the 3” clearance from the heat source is very effective for allowing the heat sink function of the fixture. Because the compartment is separated from the heat source and is only subjected to indirect diffused radiant heat it therefore doesn’t pose the same heat danger and heat mitigation requirements.

CanCoverIt solves core problem of all attic fixtures, and solves problems introduced by airtight IC Can-Lights.
Posted on April 30, 2017 .