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The DIY Energy Evaluation: Do It On A Saturday, Enjoy The Savings For Years To Come

With the Fayetteville summer in full swing, it is a good idea to make sure that your home is as energy efficient as possible so that you can avoid high summer bills. One of the best ways to do this is to conduct an energy evaluation of your home.

Look for leaks

The first place to start with a home energy evaluation is to look for cracks and gaps where conditioned air can escape and outside air can enter. Common areas of interest include:

  • Outlets and light switch plates: Remove the plate and seal any leaks with a gasket.
  • Windows and doors: You can seal these leaks using caulk or weatherstripping.
  • Attic floor: Check under any insulation in your attic for leaks. Seal smaller holes with caulk and larger ones with expanding foam.
  • Gaps: Check around pipes, vents and any other fixtures that pass through walls, ceilings and floors. Gaps around such items should be filled with expanding foam.
  • Other openings: Make sure that your fireplace damper is closed when not in use, that the door to the attic has a tight seal and that any window air conditioners are sealed as well.

Check insulation

Adequate insulation is a key factor in determining the energy efficiency of your home.

  • Make sure your attic insulation is sufficient, offering a minimum R-value of 49.
  • Wall insulation is a little trickier to check, but can usually be done by looking behind the outlets or by cutting a small hole. If you have no wall insulation, have a professional fill the wall cavities with loose-fill or expanding foam insulation.

Heating and cooling

Your heat and cooling system has to be in optimum condition if you are going to efficiently heat or cool your home.

  • Ductwork: Check for leaks and seal them with mastic or metal-backed tape.
  • Filter: Change the filter every one to two months.
  • Maintenance: Have your systems serviced annually.

Lights

Your home’s lights can cost you a lot.

  • Wattage: Use no more bulb wattage than you need.
  • Bulbs: Replace regular bulbs with energy-efficient models.

A home energy evaluation allows you to take control of your home’s energy usage. If you have any questions, please contact Blanton’s Heating & A/C. We will be happy to help you.