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Lowering Your Heating Load in Your Home

The weather in Calgary is enough to drive up your heating bills without inefficiencies in your house adding to the problem. With a few simple home improvements, you can reduce your home’s heating load to stay cozier and cut your heating expenses. Your furnace will also sustain less wear and last longer when it doesn’t have to run so often.

Seal Up the Leaks

The average home has so many tiny leaks the resulting air loss is equivalent to leaving a window wide open. You can use caulk to seal leaks around non-moving objects, such as window frames, and weatherstripping to seal around moving objects, such as door jambs. Places to seal include:

  • Doors and windows
  • Kitchen and bathroom vent fans
  • Appliance vents
  • Baseboards and crown molding
  • The fireplace

In the attic, air seal the access hatch and around recessed lighting, dropped soffits, knee walls, the plumbing vent shaft, and the chimney.

Check the HVAC ducts in your attic and basement. The duct joints should be sealed with mastic or metal-backed tape.

Boost Your Insulation

Because warm air naturally rises, good attic insulation is one of your best defences against winter heat loss. It will also help you stay cooler in summer by keeping heat from the attic out of your rooms. In the Calgary area, you’ll need a minimum of an R-33 (RSI 5.8) layer of insulation. For maximum savings, install an R-60 (RSI 10.6) layer. That means at least 25 cm of fibreglass batt insulation. Use a layer of rigid foam to insulate the attic hatch.

If your walls or floors feel cold, they need more insulation. Loose-fill (blown-in) insulation makes it possible to add insulation to these areas without tearing them up first.

Insulating the basement rim joists with rigid foam can also help keep your floors warm.

You can further reduce your home’s heating load by hanging heavy drapes, then keep them closed at night and open while the sun is shining. To get more tips for keeping your home warm affordably, contact us at Arpi’s Industries in the Calgary area.

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