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Very nice story about an entrepreneurial person. We are going to be part of the shared solar pilot, so this story hits home.
Its refreshing to see local businesses doing their part for the environment and setting an example to others.
What a remarkable story! Roy’s creativity, resourcefulness and desire to learn has not only accommodated his customers but the environment as well. Quite inspirational and so indicative of the American Dream!
Thanks for reminding me how great a wood burner can be.
Your point that local wood is really a source of renewable energy is a good one but to be efficient,it must have a properly designed fireplace with a sealed glass front and outside air supplied to the combustion site.I enjoyed the video and I am glad to be a participant in the clean energy program at MG&E
Glad to hear about TopHat being part of the clean energy program. Have used them for years, having first used their services when we lived out near Lake Wisconsin and visited their offices in Baraboo. I love the insert they installed a few years ago at the house here in Madison. I have lots of wood from the two trees that had to be taken down. Its nice to have the option of heating with wood and not having to turn the heat on in the entire house.
Is this for wood burning fire places only? We have a gas fire place.
We show a lot of wood burning fireplaces in the story, but Top Hat can help with gas fireplaces as well.
Great marketing to make his business about creating a warm and safe home. That’s much more compelling than having a clean chimney!
Hats off (pun intended) to Top Hat, I appreciate a business that believes in supporting green power as much as I do. Thank you!
What a great small business success story. Very cool that Roy is buying into renewable energy!
I liked your top hat story. I think more could be said about the cleanness of burning wood. Wood burners have emmisions but if installed and used correctly those emmisions are acceptable.
I admire Ed;s commitment and his services. I’d enjoy other stories about energy businesses that are finding and developing non-fissil fuel and non greenhouse gas emitting ways to keeps homes and businesses energy-efficient. Particularly I’d like to know if one can retrofit one’s home to take better advantage of passive solar and geothermal energy savings.
Good human interest piece with a green touch. Interesting that a fireplace store has solar panels. Goes to show that many ways to access renewable, clean energy. Thanks for the story.
That was really fun! I like his way of thinking and learning–curious about how things work and how to make them better, an intelligent self-taught master of his craft. Thanks to Top Hat and thank you, MGE, for a fun little spotlight on a green-focused business.
I applaud the owners good intentions, that means a lot, but wood is not exactly a clean fuel. I suppose on the spectrum of fuels it is better than some which require a lot more effort/energy to extract and refine, but being aware of woods drawbacks as well as it benefits provides opportunities to mitigate the problem areas. From the video it looks like this company installs natural gas furnaces as well which are a lot more efficient. I hope the continue to make progress in their green initiatives.
Nice to hear a story about a local business with a conscience. Will definitely remember Top Hat the next time we have a fireplace need.
fun business to have built
I was glad to see that MG and E is supporting wood burning as an alternative heating system.
Great story..thanks for sharing.
We are also part of the shared solar pilot! Looking forward to it.
What a great business! Reminds me, I could probably use a sweep!
Interesting commentary! I’ve never ever lived with a fireplace. I think of them as producing soot (which must be carbon) and allowing heat to escape up the chimney. How does one prevent a fireplace from allowing a draft through the chimney when not in use?
Great business story!
This is cool. I’d consider Top Hat the next time we need chimney maintenance.
Great success story. Renewable wood and renewable solar. Great combination.
Very impressive. Roy’s attitude gives me courage and faith in the future of our country.
interesting how he got recognition from the Mary Poppins story but proved himself with skills, and how he has continued to keep up with new products.
Interesting progression of career choice. How much was planned and how much unfolded on its own? This goes to show passion for a subject goes a long way.
Great story. Please contact me about installing a wood burnerning insert in my house 🙂
Thanks for a interesting story! Nice that he is so curious and adapted his business for long term growth and success!
This was so beautifully told. I never knew how Top Hat got its start and to hear Roy’s story was so enLIGHTening (smile). I am so glad to hear how this business evolved and grew to have a renewable focus. — And in 2005, we got our fireplace from Top Hat. It’s been a treasure ever since we had it installed.
Enjoyed it and e mailed it to my family and friends, thanks , this keeps us going green!
Green energy is so important, Happy to see old methods become more innovative.
I am not surprised that someone in the Madison area is a leader in the Nation for innovation and expertise! Keep up the good work, Top Hat!
Good Story. The company has a great approach to their business and doing what they can to help the environment with the solar panel installation. Great example for other businesses to consider.