Insulate Your Home Like A Pro
Energy efficient homes require less energy to perform household functions than homes that are less energy-efficient. There are many adjustments that homeowners can make to reduce the amount of energy required by their homes by controlling heat loss and tightening up the home’s building envelope. Insulate your home properly.
Insulate and Caulk for Increased Energy Efficiency
The drawing above will show you what parts of your home to insulate. You can use this to help you insulate your home properly, using the right amount of insulation and where to add sealant and caulking. Window sill, exteriors doors, window air conditioner and other penetrations can all contribute to more energy efficiency when you insulate and properly seal.
Leakage Through the Building Envelope
Sealing holes and cracks in the building envelope of a home helps reduce drafts, moisture, dust, pollen and noise. A tightly sealed home can improve comfort and indoor air quality while reducing utility bills and energy consumption. Tightening the home reduces the number of air changes per hour. The following are some common places where leakage may occur:
- electrical outlets;
- mail slots;
- around pipes and wires;
- wall or window-mounted air conditioners;
- attic hatches;
- fireplace dampers;
- weatherstripping around doors;
- window frames; and
- switch plates.
How Filling Cracks and Sealing Openings Help Insulate:
- Caulk can be used to fill small gaps. Caulk can be obtained at hardware stores.
- Expandable foam can be used to fill larger gaps.
- Foam gaskets can be used to seal electrical outlets.
How To Insulate and Seal Windows and Doors
About one-third of the home’s total heat loss usually occurs through windows and doors. The following are ways to insulate and reduce energy lost through doors and windows.
- Seal all window edges and cracks with rope caulk. This is the cheapest and simplest option and can help control heat loss.
- Windows and window frames can be weatherstripped with a special lining that is inserted between the window and the frame. For doors, weatherstrip around the whole perimeter to ensure a tight seal when closed. Install quality door sweeps on the bottom of the doors, if they aren’t already in place.
- Install storm windows at windows with only single panes. A removable glass frame can be installed over an existing window.
- If existing windows have rotted or damaged wood, cracked glass, missing putty, poorly fitting sashes, or locks that don’t work, they should be repaired or replaced.
Heat loss and increased energy consumption can be improved through many of the steps that you can take to insulate. Increased energy efficiency can be more than just buying an Energy Star rated appliance or other alternative energy sources. While these are great for energy efficiency and reducing energy consumption, also having window frames sealed, window air conditioners sealed, exterior doors and patio doors caulked and sealed, the building envelope of your home tightened up and other areas where heat loss can occur addressed is important.