Is your home old and drafty? If so, you’re probably wasting a lot of energy trying to heat or cool it to a comfortable level. Even if you have a newer home, the foundation may move around over time, shifting the walls a bit and allowing cracks to develop. Old home or new, you should periodically be checking for air leaks, and when you find them, sealing them up.
Finding Air Leaks
The best way to discover air leaks is to schedule a professional home energy audit. The auditor will perform several tests, including a blower door test and a thermographic scan, to determine where leaks are occurring.
Blower door tests require a large, calibrated, variable-speed fan to be mounted in an exterior door. The fan creates negative pressure by pulling all the air out of the home while a manometer measures the pressure differentials, revealing where air is leaking out.
Thermographic scans, which can be interior or exterior, use infrared video and still cameras to detect light in the heat spectrum. They record the temperature variations on the exterior of the home, so the auditor can find where insulation is needed.
If you’re not ready to hire a professional, you can perform a less-accurate inspection yourself. Visually inspect the inside and outside of your home for cracks in these places:
- Exterior water faucets
- Contact points between siding and chimneys
- Where foundation and exterior siding or brick meet
- Exterior corners
- Electrical outlets
- Window and door frames
- Around electrical outlets and switch plates
- Attic hatches
- Dryer vents
You can also pass a lit piece of incense in front of the interior openings mentioned above, to see if the smoke wavers. If so, you have a leak that needs to be sealed.
Use caulk, weatherstripping or insulation to correct the leaks, and you can save considerably on energy bills winter and summer by keeping conditioned air in and unconditioned air out.
Curious about how you can correct air leaks in your home? Contact Arpi’s Industries. We’ve served Calgary and the surrounding area for more than 50 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about TOPIC and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide.
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