Checking Your Home For Air Leaks

Did you know that finding and sealing air leaks in your house is a great way to take charge of your energy bill and save you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars? According to the Department of Energy, you could save 5%-30% on your energy bill by simply sealing air leaks that can be hidden throughout your home. The average house has enough home air leaks to add up to a 2-square-foot hole… That’s like leaving a medium-sized window wide open 24 hours a day! With that being said, the HVAC Delaware experts from Joseph Frederick and Sons are here to share some helpful steps for you to follow if you want to take matters into your own hands and search for air leaks in your home on your own. 

DIY Ways To Find Air Leaks

  1. Check all areas where different building materials meet on the outside of your home. If you have siding alongside the chimney or exterior brick connected to a cement foundation, exterior corners, outdoor faucets, or other places that are touching but not solid, air might be escaping or entering through a gap or crack.
  2. Check for cracks and gaps inside your home. Top spots to check include electrical outlets, switch plates, door and window frames, electrical and gas service entrances, baseboards, fireplace dampers, attic hatches, cable TV and phone lines, where dryer vents pass through walls, vents and fans, wall- or window-mounted air conditioners, and recessed lighting. Be on the lookout for cracks and gaps where air could leak out.
  3. Use the flashlight method for energy efficiency testing. For this test, you use light to find drafts in your house. If you suspect gaps, ask someone to shine a flashlight through the potential gaps from indoors when it’s dark outside. Stand outside and watch for light seeping through. This should reveal where your cracks are and help you detect air leaks, especially if they’re large gaps.
  4. Shut a door or window on a dollar bill. This is a simple and effective way to check for air leaks around windows and doors. If you can easily pull the dollar bill out, you’ve likely got a window air leak that needs to be addressed.
  5. Hold a piece of paper in areas where you suspect a leak. The paper will move if, for instance, you’ve found a cold air draft around an electrical outlet or window frame.
  6. Check insulation. Wall insulation plays an important role in preventing home air leaks. For example, proper insulation ensures that the warm air in your home in the winter stays contained in the areas you need it. Insulation’s ability to resist heat flow is measured by something called thermal resistance, or R-value. The Department of Energy offers suggestions for determining adequate R-values and creating an energy-efficient attic or basement. 

Joseph Frederick And Sons, HVAC Delaware Experts

Air leaks can develop in many easy-to-miss places within your home. The more you are able to locate and repair, the more energy and money you could potentially be saving. After you’ve performed your home air leakage test and identified the problem areas, the next step is to plug them up. For more tips on ways to save in your home, check our website, or contact the HVAC Delaware experts at Joseph Frederick And Sons today for a consultation or repairs!