Ever done a double take when you took a look at your last energy bill? Even though high energy bills can be the end result of intense weather conditions, repeatedly high bills can quickly signify an inefficient HVAC system or your home is misusing energy through other means, like drafty windows or poor insulation.
An easy way to determine whether your home is wasting energy is by getting a home service expert to perform a home energy audit, also called a home energy assessment. Keep reading to learn all about home energy audits, including what they are and their benefits.
What Is a Home Energy Audit
An energy audit is a custom inspection of how much energy your home uses up and whether – and where – your home may be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will take a look at previous energy bills while completing an energy audit to figure out where energy is being consumed and how much.
The general goal of an energy audit is to help homeowners save money on their energy bills by recommending energy-efficient renovations, which can include replacing your existing HVAC system, installing new insulation, plugging up leaks, or replacing loose windows.
During the energy assessment, the auditor carries out an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor will perform a blower door test on doorways, windows and fireplaces to determine if there are air leaks in your home. They’ll also inspect your home’s HVAC system, as well as the ductwork, the water heater, and the insulation in your attic. Exhaustive assessments could also include checking your current lighting system.
Benefits of a Home Energy Audit
It can be hard for the average homeowner to be sure how efficient their home is in comparison to other similar homes in their neighborhood. However, lots of energy companies often supply information about where your home is ranked in comparison to similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient in contrast with your neighbors’ homes. This is a great starting point to figure out if you need an energy audit performed.
A few of the benefits of a home energy audit include:
Learning How Efficient Your Home Is
It’s worthwhile to learn more about how efficient your home is and where you’re consuming the most energy. For example, if your ducts are leaking air, it could lead to a significant increase in your energy bills and excessive wear and tear on your HVAC system since it has to run longer to completely heat or cool your home.
Making Energy-Efficient Upgrades
An energy audit will outline where you need to make energy-efficient changes to cut back on energy and decrease utility bills. This may include replacing old weatherstripping or getting a new energy-efficient furnace.
Improving Health and Safety
Enabling air to seep into your home via doors and windows, or due to a lack of insulation can cause unwanted moisture to form, which can negatively influence your home’s humidity levels or encourage mold. This can cause health issues, particularly for people dealing with asthma or allergies.
Increasing Your Home’s Retail Value
Energy-efficient homes are sought after by homebuyers. You can sell your home more quickly or for more money by telling potential buyers that it’s energy efficient.
How to Do an Energy Audit of Your Home
Although completing an energy audit on your own might not be as thorough as choosing a professional, it’ll give you a broad idea of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t find any problems during the DIY test, then you probably don’t need to call in a professional. Follow this step-by-step checklist:
- Inspect your HVAC system. Damaged ducts can lose up to 20% of conditioned air, leading to higher energy bills and excess wear and tear on HVAC equipment. If you find leaks, use duct tape to eliminate them. If your HVAC equipment is old and wearing down, upgrading to a new system can save you a significant amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it is better to contact a reputable HVAC company in Litchfield Park to inspect your system.
- Check for air leaks. Air leaks on average can increase the energy bills by 10 to 20%. Inside, look for air leaks in areas where there could be a draft, such as along the edge of flooring and close to baseboards and electrical outlets. Outside, you can inspect for air leaks along the home’s foundation, siding and mortar. Plug, caulk or seal any air leaks to save money.
- Examine insulation. If your home is older, it could mean your insulation is too. If you can see the joists, you likely need more insulation.
- Check ventilation. Make sure that all of your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are spinning properly, and check for evidence of rot or moisture.
Contact Cooler Tymes LLC for a Professional Energy Audit
If you want professional help figuring out how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, call the HVAC professionals at Cooler Tymes LLC today. We’ve proudly serviced the residents of Litchfield Park with quality home services for years. Contact us today to request an appointment.