McClurg helps F'ville couple first to 'go green' in CNY

Homeowners install VELUX solar water heating system

Marcellus-based McClurg Remodeling and Construction Services recently helped a Central New York couple to become the first in the area to employ a green energy system at home.

McClurg last week installed a VELUX solar water heating system at the home of Vernon and Barbara Kessler of Dawley Road in Fayetteville. The system, which has been used in European homes for years, uses the sun's energy as a source of heat to produce hot water for domestic use. The system is a product of VELUX, a global leader in solar technology headquartered in Denmark.

"Solar water heating is a proven technology that works in all climates, even right here in Central New York," said Brian Ciota, vice president, McClurg. "With a solar water heater, your water heating bills should drop 50 to 80 percent (annually) and, thanks to generous federal and state tax credits, payback can be as little as three years."

McClurg has been doing business with VELUX America for 30 years and is the only certified installer of its products in this area. Their longstanding relationship helped facilitate a seamless introduction of VELUX's newest solar system.

"They're doing a great job," said Vernon Kessler about McClurg. He and his wife chose to go solar primarily because of their interest in green projects.

"With the two of us in the house, we really couldn't justify it on the basis of dollar savings on energy, but we do want to see it happen and we will be saving money," he said. "We have a gas water heater. I understand it will barely run once this is operating."

Prices vary by system, said Charlie Jackson, senior sales representative, VELUX America. The company offers a single panel system ideal for two people, a two-panel system for up to four people and a three-panel system considered family size. Based on installations in Europe with climates similar to CNY, the system is expected to provide up to 100 percent of a household's summer hot water heating needs and up to 50 percent in winter. By using the sun to heat water, this green technology also reduces the homeowner's carbon footprint.

"There's always been a lot of interest in solar," Jackson said. "It's something we've had in Europe for close to 15 years. It came to the US last year and it's doing really, really well."

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