An Inspector Of Flow Metering Devices Used To Administer Curing Air Leaks in Your Home Can Help You Save on Energy Bills

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Curing Air Leaks in Your Home Can Help You Save on Energy Bills

Building air entry can occur by moving air through cracks and voids in the house and by moving air from inside the house to outside. Excessive air movement increases home energy costs and can leave your home feeling stuffy, humid, or too dry. A balancing act is essential when designing and building a home. Excessive air leakage can lead to a drafty and cold home and high energy costs.

Air leakage paths are often found in penetrations drilled for plumbing, electrical, vents and other utility services. Also, appliances installed outside the home, such as light fixtures and outlets, can also contribute significantly to indoor air leakage.

One area of ​​potential air leakage that is overlooked is the space between the bottom of the sill plate and the foundation walls of the house. Foam gaskets are usually installed in new construction. Older constructions typically have gaps that allow a lot of air to leak into the basement. Foam insulation can be installed between these gaps to keep air leakage to a minimum. Areas where patio doors and windows connect to the house should also be sealed to prevent air leakage. Use silicone caulk to seal these areas. Silicone caulk is flexible and withstands weather changes well. Avoid using fiberglass insulation to fill gaps. The fiberglass batt is porous and does not effectively stop air movement.

Another area that is overlooked and can cause large amounts of air leakage is the perimeter strips between the floors of the home. Air can enter through gaps in the siding and move into the home away from the entry point.

There are many products on the market to help seal air leaks in your home. Caulk can be used to seal small holes or gaps. Expanded foam can be used to seal larger holes and gaps. Rope caulking can also be used to seal around windows and doors. There are foam gaskets that can be purchased to seal areas behind outlets and other accesses. Weather stripping can be used to tighten windows to their frames.

Older homes can benefit the most from air sealing solutions. This type of air sealing is easy to do while the house is under construction or renovation. Stopping air leaks is a very cost-effective way to lower your home’s energy bills.

A very effective way to check for air leaks is to hire a professional who uses a device called a blower door. The house is closed and a large fan installed in the door blows air from outside. When the blower is running, it pulls in outside air through gaps around the house. Air flow through the fan can be measured using a flow meter. This method is very effective in separating the various air leaks in the house.

Often infrared cameras can be used in conjunction with blower doors. Infrared will reveal areas of air leakage and tell you where the home is losing energy. Infrared will scan the home using the blue and red color spectrum to detail where air is leaking from the home. Blue colored areas are the coldest areas and red colored areas represent the warmest areas. Depending on the time of year and temperature, an infrared camera can show you where to install additional air sealing solutions.

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