Steve McCusker of Roof One in Pontiac, Mich., looks at each roofing project with an eye toward helping homeowners, and that includes making sure their attics are properly insulated.
“We look at insulation at every job we go on,” said McCusker, owner and general manger for Roof One with locations in Michigan and Iowa. “Insulation is a big factor in home maintenance, and we look at the AttiCat Insulation System as easy, compact system that does the job for us.”
The AttiCat Expanding Blown-In Insulation System is “very cool,” said Jim Evans, Marketing Leader at Owens Corning.
“There is a lack of awareness among homeowners and contractors of how much insulation they have in their homes,” Evans said. “AttiCat increases the insulation foundation and also creates awareness of the foundation to the homeowner.”
AttiCat is a system that helps contractors and homeowners re-insulate their homes with Owens Corning’s Expanding Blown-In Insulation System.
According to Jeff Buckmaster, AttiCat Product and Program Leader at Owens Corning, different types of insulation systems have been around for a long time, but none compare to AttiCat. “There has never been a system like AttiCat that insulates a home with one complete package,” he said.
AttiCat is essentially broken down into five parts: the installation machine, loose-fill product, marketing, training, and accessories, Buckmaster said. “AttiCat itself is a two-part machine that weighs 141 pounds and needs 15-amp service to operate,” he said. “It is a lightweight machine and can be moved around jobs easily. It fits in back of most station wagons, SUVs, and trucks. It is designed and developed specifically for the contractor looking to increase their profit per job.
Marketing, Training and Accessories
With the launch of the AttiCat Expanding Blown-In Insulation System, Owens Corning officials introduced a marketing plan for contractors and homeowners.
“We serve it up to contractors who want to differentiate their service,” Buckmaster said. “The AttiCat system can provide contractors with more of a marketing presence and knowhow than other building products. We want to help them with the marketing – to aid them in learning how to sell to homeowners. We want to equip AttiCat contractors with the right tools to be successful in the home.”
Training on the AttiCat System takes place through a network of professional business coaches
“We have a training organization within AttiCat that trains contractors to make them better at in-home selling, lead generation, and product installation,” said Buckmaster, noting that training is thus far “booked through December.”
As far as accessories related to AttiCat System, Buckmaster said Owens Corning realizes to properly sell an insulation system in the home the attic needs to have the right amount of insulation and be properly ventilated at the same time.
“For example, soffits — you need to keep that vent area clear,” Buckmaster said. “If you do it improperly, then those vents will clog and prematurely age your roof. Our raft-R-mate ventilation baffles provide a barrier in between the vented soffit area and keep a ventilation path under the roof deck, which allows the AttiCat blown-in insulation to be installed while still keeping the attic properly vented.
Buckmaster said another Owens Corning product, Attic Hatch Insulator, is a product which both air seals and insulates (R-30) your attic hatch opening cover. “We also use an Attic Stairway Insulator cover, an easy fold-out product,” he said. “It’s made from R-10 insulation with durable foil facing both sides. And we offer a Smartcap Attic Recessed Light Cover, which is designed to install quickly and keep a 3-inch barrier around a can light.”
Other accessories include AttiCat’s 3-inch wood-plugs which help the installation of the AttiCat System in an existing wall using a drill to create two 3-inch holes per cavity. Buckmaster said most homes without wall insulation can easily have insulation added using the AttiCat System. “We recommend removing existing siding, installing the AttiCat product, and plugging the holes with a tapered 3-inch wood plug,” he said.
Benefits of the System
When Owens Corning launched the AttiCat System there were existing machines that provided similar service, but Buckmaster said they don’t compare to the AttiCat System.
“The benefits of AttiCat go beyond the components,” he said. “It’s very quick and takes about 90 minutes to install product in an average attic. It’s user-friendly; very intuitive with simple controls; it’s safe; and it’s virtually itch free.”
While insulation is inherently a product that causes human skin to become itchy when they come into contact with each other, AttiCat is “loose in nature with no binder.”
“It is a very soft material,” Buckmaster said. “It’s not a rigid fiber that will irritate your skin. Based on the belief that insulation is irritating, most contractors and homeowners are hesitant to install insulation, but we show the customer the product and they are amazed the Fiberglas is in there. Most customers are very surprised with how soft and non-irritating the AttiCat Blown-Insulation product really is.”
Another benefit is the AttiCat System does not promote mold growth and does not absorb moisture. “It does not settle,” Buckmaster said. “If you blow in R-49, you will still have it years later. That’s why we offer a lifetime warranty.”
Contractors and Homeowners
Contractors and homeowners are utilizing the AttiCat System and reaping the benefits.
“We have a network of contractors who are using AttiCat,” Buckmaster noted. “We have Top of the House Certification for roofing contractors who are certified to install insulation in the home. We provide rigorous training — a lot of work is involved. They get certified with us and they can say they are Owens Corning Top of the House™ certified, which further differentiates roofing contractors in the home”
AttiCat provides value-added service to homeowners since approximately 80 million homes in the United States are not properly insulated, Buckmaster said.
“We are providing a system solution to bring homes up to DOE (Department of Energy) standards,” he said. “Building codes have traditionally been well below DOE standards. Most homes built before the 90s where constructed without energy efficiency in mind. Many of the homes in the U.S. are under-insulated costing homeowners comfort and high energy costs.”
Buckmaster said most homes in America should have at least 20 inches of insulation in their attic. “If you can see wood,” he said, “then your house is under-insulated and in need of AttiCat Blown-In Insulation.
“The system was solely designed by us to give a maximum return to contractors and homeowners,” he said. “It’s a revolutionary system compared with others.”
Of course, roofing contractors like the AttiCat System because it differentiates their service from others, while also providing them with an opportunity to make more money on each job.
“AtticCat is fiberglass insulation — everyone knows the name and associates insulation with the Pink Panther product,” Steve McCusker of Roof One noted. “Depending on the size of job, that’s where value comes in.”
McCusker said the AttiCat System is great for households. “You can move it (AttiCat insulation product) around easier in the attic,” he said. “We’re a strong believer in it. People look at insulation as saving money on energy costs in the winter, but it also saves money in the summertime.”
One reason McCusker uses the AttiCat System is because most energy loss occurs in the attic. “Houses are so energy-efficient these days, so the only place where heat loss happens is in the attic,” he said. “So we push each and every household for insulation.”
Buckmaster said contractors like McCusker are getting more insulation sales, which gives them an opportunity to do more work in homes and increase revenue. “AttiCat sets contractors apart from their competition and differentiates their service,” he said. “It gives them a platform, and homeowners remember that. AttiCat helps increase the overall homeowner comfort in their home, and in the long run they save more money. We’re excited w the opportunity to work with contractors and to help them become more successful in the home.”
The AttiCat System is available for an investment purchase between $6,000 and $7,000 for authorized AttiCat System dealers. Buckmaster noted the actual AttiCat insulation retails for about $30 to $32 a bag.
“Many older homes have some sort of minimal insulation, but Owens Corning would like to help bring the attic up to a recommended DOE level that will help the homeowner save money and give more service to the contractor.”
For more information, call 800-GET-PINK or visit www.owenscorning.com.