What to Expect When You Get a Home Energy Audit

Construction & Contractors Blog

If your power bills are higher than your friends or neighbors, yet you still feel too hot or too cold in your home, then your house probably isn't very energy efficient. If you live in an older home, it could have single pane windows and inadequate insulation.

Before you spend a lot of money on upgrades, it's best to have an energy audit so you know exactly what needs to be done. Here are some of the things that are examined during the audit.

Power Bills & Lifestyle

The first thing the auditor will do is examine your lifestyle and look at things like how many people live in your home, the thermostat and hot water heater settings, how often you use the washer and dishwasher, and whether you have a pool. Next, he or she examines your power bill to see how much energy you consume. You'll want to gather bills over several months so the auditor can see your energy consumption during various seasons of the year.

Physical Examination

Next, the auditor makes a complete physical examination of your home. On the exterior, he or she looks for gaps and cracks that allow air to leak into or out of your home. The auditor checks the roof and type of windows you have. The inside is examined thoroughly for amount and type of insulation, age of appliances, state of the electrical system, and the condition of HVAC including ducts.

The auditor examines every room of your home noting location of windows and finding areas of leaking or energy inefficiency. He or she may even examine the attic or crawlspace for a close inspection of the insulation in the home and to further check for air leaks.

Sophisticated Testing

A company that does energy audits on homes also uses sophisticated testing to determine problems with energy loss. One of those tests involves an infrared scanner. The auditor scans your home with this instrument and it picks up on temperature differences. When there is a cool spot or hot spot, it indicates air is leaking in from the outside. This test is an excellent way to find hidden air leaks and to find areas that don't have enough insulation to control the temperature in your home.

Another test is the blower door test. The auditor places a huge fan in your exterior door to do this test. The fan pulls air out of your house and this causes a pressure drop that pulls in outside air through areas that are leaking. To find where the air is rushing in, the auditor may use smoke and watch where the smoke goes, or this test may be done in conjunction with an infrared scanner to make the leaks easier to spot.

After all these tests are completed, the auditor provides you with an energy assessment of your home and can guide you on the changes that need to be made. This helps you spend money where it will do the most good. You may need to add insulation to the attic and between the walls, upgrade your windows, or seal cracks around the exterior.

You'll also receive recommendations for saving energy such as the best settings for your HVAC and water heater. Although you'll have to pay for the home energy audit, the expense is well worth it since it will save on your monthly power bill, and more importantly, you and your family will be much more comfortable inside your home.

To learn more about your options, contact services like Convenient Home Services, Inc.

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24 March 2017

Adding a Man Cave to Your Home: Tips

I have always loved baseball, and when the world series arrives each year, I enjoy inviting my friends over to watch the games. As our family grew, it became difficult for all of our guests to fit in our living room. We decided that we needed a dedicated "man cave" in our home, but we didn't have an extra room to build it in. We thought long and hard about how we could add it, but we finally decided to turn our garage into the man cave and have a carport built onto our home to park our cars under. I have always been interested in learning more handy-work, so I enjoyed watching the contractors build both the man cave and car port. I thought I would start a blog to share what I learned during the building process to help other homeowners!