If your home isn’t sealed properly to keep warm air out in the summer and keep it inside in the winter, you’re likely paying much higher energy bills than you need to. With the depths of summer right in front of us, now’s a good time to evaluate whether your home is sealed properly and efficiently. Identifying and sealing air leaks is the first big step.
Two types of air leaks are most common:
Delivery System. Your ducts can allow treated air to escape before the intended delivery point, unintentionally cooling or warming air in unconditioned areas where the duct system is located. This causes your cooling or heating equipment to work overtime to compensate for the lost conditioned air. Leaky ducts can also allow polluted air to infiltrate the ducts and circulate in your home.
Thermal Envelope. The entire building can allow conditioned air to escape and untreated air to creep in. Drafts do more than waste money; they can make us miserable with nagging cold spots or uncomfortably hot areas in the house.
Caulking and weather-stripping are two relatively simple but extremely effective methods of minimizing unintended air losses in a home. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy suggests that the potential savings from proper weatherization can more than pay for the installation in the first year alone.
Caulking is typically carried out using a silicone-based material to fill cracks between static joins. The caulk is squeezed into gaps where siding meets brick, for instance, between the foundations and the walls, or between window frames and surrounding supports. Weather-stripping is used where movement occurs between the dissimilar parts, such as around the doors and windows where they meet the frames but cannot be permanently sealed.
Remember that sealing your home can have unintended consequences. You can seal in dust and mold, even dangerous carbon monoxide, when upgrading to proper air sealing techniques. That’s why an effective ventilation system should go hand in hand with sealing your home.
The experts at Geisel Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing can take care of all your home-comfort needs, providing the services necessary to evaluate and rectify any air sealing issues. Contact us today.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about proper air sealing techniques and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Geisel Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing services Western Cleveland. Visit our website to see our special offers and get started today! For those Do it Yourselfers who would rather take control of your own indoor comfort, you can shop our online store for replacement parts, products and accessories!