Green homes are becoming increasingly more popular. Finding ways to advertise a home as being energy-efficient can spark a level of interest in prospective buyers. And as the seasons start to change and spring pollen floats into the air, having a solution to keep the pollen out of a home and save on a home's electricity bill is a plus.
"Every season I am miserable because of allergies and so is everyone else," says Paul Honnen, CEO of Screens, Inc. That caused Honnen to research and develop a partnership with a 150-year old specialty textile company in Europe that manufactures window screens that filter out the airborne pollens. His company is now the exclusive distributor for North America.
It all began on a beautiful sunny day in Arizona, while Honnen sat inside his home with the windows closed up and the air conditioner running to prevent the dreaded itchy eyes, runny nose and sneezing from the pollens and allergens. Honnen wanted to find a way to reduce his energy bill and be able to enjoy the fresh air.
According to the company, a recent report says that more than 50 million people in North America are affected by allergies and almost 55% of the population test positive for at least one or more airborne allergens. However, the only way to prevent allergy attacks in the home was to close up the windows and doors tightly, leaving the expensive cost of the air conditioner running to cool the home.
But the PollenTec Screens are helping to keep people feeling good in both their health and pocketbook. The screens eliminate up to 100 percent of pollen from entering into the home.
According to the company, extensive testing was conducted by the European Center for Allergy Research Foundation (ECARF) and verified that 100% of grass pollens, 99.71% of birch pollen, 93.1% of Stinging Nettle-pollen, 90.9% pollen and Ragweed were captured by the PollenTec screen. The complete results can be viewed here: pollentec.com/testdata.html.
Plus, Honnen says shutting off the air conditioner helps keep money in your pocket. "One month would more than pay for these screens. This is very much a green building product."
A 24 x 36 size window cost $75 to equip it with the special allergy-proof screens. The screens can be installed by homeowners, commercial and residential builders, and contractors. Screens, Inc. can even help customers find a screen repair company in their area to help them install the screening in windows and doors. Screens, Inc. can also provide a complete screen frame shipped directly to the consumer.
Honnen says his company is trying to get the screens approved for tax incentives from the government because of their ability to help reduce the energy footprint of a home. "What we're trying to do is get it so that if you buy the screen the government pays X amount of dollars. We're a little way away from that but we're working on that and we've already had some meetings with two governors who think it's a very good idea," says Honnen.
While the tax incentive is yet to be approved, Honnen says the benefit of being able to enjoy fresh air in highly pollinated seasons provides personal relief and may be an added selling point for your home.