Monroe firm among local companies to participate in National Solar Tour

| 22 Feb 2012 | 02:01

Warwick - They were there to explain that there are many ways to attack the high cost of energy these days and choosing what options best suit your home can be fairly easy if you have solid advice. October is National Energy Awareness Month. During the annual National Solar Tour on Saturday, Oct. 2, a group of local energy professionals gathered outside Greenway Technologies of Warwick, 585 Route 94 North, to provide information and advice to anyone interested. According to its Web site, the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) annual National Solar Tour is the world’s largest grassroots solar event. It is primarily designed to offer the public an opportunity to tour innovative green homes and buildings to see first hand how solar energy, energy efficiency and other sustainable technologies can reduce monthly utility bills. The local team outside Greenway Technologies was on hand to offer a combination of products and services geared to make up an energy efficient home. Federal and state tax credits Hosts Patrick Gallagher of Gallagher Solar Thermal and Thom Woglom of Greenway Technologies, can boast years of hands on experience installing Solar Hot Water systems and building cost-effective and energy-efficient homes and additions. Before the National Solar Tour day Gallagher had actually installed a fully functioning solar hot water demonstration system at the Greenway Technologies building so that he and Woglom could jointly showcase it. “We let people see actual systems and help them learn that there are a wide variety of alternative energy and conservation options that home owners can take advantage of,” said Gallagher. “And Solar Hot Water Systems qualify for both a 30 per cent Federal plus a 25 per cent New York State tax credit so that effectively more than half of the cost of your solar equipment is paid for by tax credits. “Most systems run from about $3,600 to $4,050 after tax credits and start paying for themselves immediately by lowering fuel costs,” Gallagher added. “It’s like making that portion of your fuel bill inflation proof for the next 30 years since the system will never cost more than the day it was installed.” Thom Woglom said many alternative choices, building techniques and materials that his company, Greenway Technologies, incorporates into its projects also have tax credits that can yield substantial savings. “By lowering your energy bills with proper insulation you can save more money than you would earn in the bank and also enjoy a more comfortable home,” he said. Other presenters were also available to answer questions. Buddy Damiani, for example, is a solar electric contractor and owner of Damiani and Sun Solar Energy in Monroe. John Romansky of Green Domain in Somerville, N.J., is a Building Performance Institute certified contractor who explained the techniques that can tighten up a house and reduce bills promptly. Mike Dunleavy of Regional Economic Community Assistance Program explained how the Green Jobs/ Green New York program can expand and create jobs locally with weatherization and energy efficiency measures for urban and suburban homes and apartments. “My star of the day was Jerry Fischetti,” said Gallagher. “He’s a Warwick homeowner with a solar hot water system I installed. He’s logged two years of performance data and can pick out any day during these last two years and tell you the weather and the temperature in his solar hot water system.” Fischetti believes the savings will eventually pay for the cost of the system. “After the tax credits and what I’ve saved on my monthly utility budget,” he said, “I’ll be showering for free pretty soon.”