Would a Professional Energy Evaluation Help You Cut Energy Costs?Published on: August 23, 2012
If you are interested in making your home more energy efficient so that you can reduce your power bills, the best place to start is with a home energy audit. There are a number of areas of your home that can be improved upon to increase the energy efficiency of your home, and with a home energy audit, you will know exactly where your largest areas of opportunity lie. During an audit, a professional will go over your home from basement to attic looking for leaks, checking your insulation and ensuring that your air conditioning system is running smoothly.
There are several tools that professionals use when performing an energy audit on your home. Auditors will usually use thermal imaging, blower door tests and duct blaster testing to determine which areas in your home that are causing you to lose energy efficiency. Based on the results of these tests, auditors will provide you with a list of upgrades that can improve your air conditioning system’s efficiency, and outline how much effect each home upgrade will have.
When a home energy audit is done, one of the things that auditors check is how much heat moves in and out of your home. When the insulation in your home is insufficient or not the right type, hot air can blow in and out of your home. The more hot air that enters your home during the summer, the more energy that your air conditioning needs to keep your home cool. Thermal imaging allows auditors to see exactly which parts of your home need to have the insulation upgraded, and it can also tell them if your windows could benefit from insulation as well.
Another common test during a home energy audit is a blower door test. Blower door tests are done to find leaks and drafts in your home that allow air to escape and enter your house. This test is run by using a high speed fan to blow non-toxic smoke through your home. Areas where there are leaks will become apparent as the smoke moves through your home. Similar to the blower door test is duct blaster testing. This test checks for leaks in your home’s ductwork that cause your air conditioning to have to run constantly to replace cool air that escapes your ducts.
Once your home energy audit has been completed, you will know exactly what you need to do to improve the energy efficiency of your home. This will allow you to prioritize changes and upgrades that will benefit you the most so that you get the largest return on your investment.