Ever done a double take when you viewed your last energy bill? Even though high energy bills can be the result of extreme weather conditions, persistently high bills can also signify an inefficient HVAC system or your home is misusing energy because of other means, such as drafty windows or inadequate insulation.
One of the easiest ways to identify whether your home is wasting energy is by hiring a home service expert to carry out 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 comprehensive inspection of how much energy your home consumes and whether – and where – your home could be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will go through older energy bills in the course of an energy audit to figure out where energy is being consumed and how much.
The ultimate goal of an energy audit is to help homeowners save money on their energy bills by recommending energy-efficient updates, which can include exchanging your current HVAC system, installing new insulation, closing up leaks, or replacing old windows.
Over the course of the energy assessment, the auditor carries out an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor performs a blower door test on doorways, windows and fireplaces to figure out if there are air leaks in your home. They’ll also evaluate your home’s HVAC system, as well as the ductwork, the water heater, and the insulation in your attic. Comprehensive assessments might also include reviewing your current lighting system.
Benefits of a Home Energy Audit
It can be hard for the ordinary homeowner to know for certain how efficient their home is in comparison to other similar homes in their community. However, many energy companies often provide information about where your home is ranked when compared with similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient compared to your neighbors’ homes. This is a great starting point to determine if you need an energy audit completed.
Several of the benefits of a home energy audit include:
Recognizing How Efficient Your Home Is
It’s worthwhile to learn more about how efficient your home is and where you’re using the most energy. For example, if your ducts are damaged, it could lead to a significant increase in your energy bills and additional wear and tear on your HVAC system as it has to stay on longer to fully heat or cool your home.
Making Energy-Efficient Updates
An energy audit will reveal where you need to make energy-efficient improvements to cut back on energy and lower utility bills. This might include replacing worn 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 extra moisture to form, which could negatively impact your home’s humidity levels or encourage mold. This can exacerbate health conditions, especially for people dealing with asthma or allergies.
Raising Your Home’s Retail Value
Energy-efficient homes are desired by homebuyers. You can sell your home sooner or for more money by showing possible buyers that it’s energy efficient.
How to Do an Energy Audit of Your Home
Although performing an energy audit by yourself will not be as detailed as choosing a professional, it’ll give you a broad idea of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t discover any flaws during the DIY test, then you probably don’t need to bring in a professional. Use this step-by-step checklist:
- Examine your HVAC system. Damaged ducts can lose as much as 20% of conditioned air, resulting in higher energy bills and increased wear and tear on HVAC equipment. If you discover leaks, use duct tape to seal them. If your HVAC equipment is old and inefficient, upgrading to a new system can save you a considerable amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it is better to contact a reputable HVAC company in Reinholds 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 you can find 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. Check that all of your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are spinning properly, and check for evidence of rot or moisture.
Contact County Line Mechanical LLC for a Professional Energy Audit
If you would like professional help determining how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, contact the HVAC professionals at County Line Mechanical LLC today. We’ve proudly supported the residents of Reinholds with quality home services for a long time. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.