Winterizing Keeps Homes Warm and Energy Bills Low

Most of the homes occupied today were built long ago, before energy efficiency and sustainable behavior were public concerns. As a result the standards of insulation and the air gap sealing techniques used to assemble homes are not on pace with what is required to conserve energy in a modern world. Most homes built more than a decade ago benefit from energy enhancements designed to increase comfort and lower utility bills. Insulation provides barriers against cold air infiltration between walls.

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Hollow or inadequate insulation between exterior and interior surfaces leads to heat transfers allowing warm are to migrate outside, and cold air to make its way indoors. The combination leads to significant heat loss and causes your boiler to run more often than it should. The end result is higher energy use and climbing bills from utility providers. Insulating can be an extensive project, but common sense measure to seal air gaps are also vital for trimming energy costs.

Air Breaches are Weak Points Keeping heat inside is the number one objective for energy efficiency at home, followed closely by keeping cold air out. The large surface areas of interior walls provide exposure, but a great deal of air exchange between the inside and the outdoors actually occurs around windows, doors, and other penetrations to the home’s exterior shell.

The most dramatic illustration of air exchanges is provided by modern infrared technology, which allows homeowners to see firsthand how much of their utility payment is vaporizing into the wind. Infrared cameras register temperature differences, so points where cold air meets warm are explosions of contrasting color.

Draughts arise in old homes when pressures are exerted from winds and other weather features, causing cold air to be pushed in or warm air to be drawn out. Either exchange is bad news for homeowners struggling with winter heating costs. Providing a more tidy heat envelope is an essential step toward using less energy and saving on bills.

Winterizing Strategies

Depending on the size of breaches, latex caulk and spray in expanding foam are two of the best options for filling cracks and air passages. In addition to saving money and contributing to sustainable actions, sealing the draughts in your home dramatically enhances the comfort in areas where chilly winter conditions were once a problem. Even without the benefit of a formal infrared printout, it is easy to identify problem areas within your home.

Start around windows and doors, laying-in a small bead of latex caulk where casement trim meets walls. Additionally, pay special attention to the way windows are fitted to their frames. Over time, these panels loosen up, causing air breaches around the perimeters of panes. To realize the highest R-value for your windows and door glass, enhance the glazing to acceptable levels. Sprayed expanding foam is reserved for larger cracks, such as those occurring near foundations and wooden thresholds. The pliable material is prayed loosely into cracks and crevices, before it expands to fill larger gaps. Excess foam can easily be trimmed later, and even painted to match nearby surfaces.

Weather stripping, made of felt or foam, provides contact points for door and window jambs, closing gaps commonly prone to air breaches. Fitted metallic strips are highly effective weather fortifications, furnishing male and female channels, which lock together, creating weather tight seals.

Additional penetrations into your interior living space, like those furnished by electrical outlets and switches, mail chutes, and television connections are also prone to problems letting in cold air. To remedy the problem, homeowners use special foam insert to fill gap behind switch plates, providing insulation from wall cavities.

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