Evaluating Home Energy Efficiency

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated June 28, 2013)

Who doesn't want to make their lives a little "greener" today? After all, if you can make your home as energy efficient as possible, then you will not only reduce your carbon footprint you will also reduce your monthly expenses. The trick to getting started on this road to a more energy wise home though is for you begin evaluating home energy efficiency. Many of the tests you can do yourself, and can actually do in less than an hour. While these initial tests will not tell you everything it will tell you the basics of what needs to be done, or even if something needs to be done at all. Here are some of the basic evaluation strategies that you can use yourself, and a little bit of information about what a specialist can do for you.

  • Check windows and doors. Check all your doors and windows to see if there are any drafts. The way that you do this is to close and lock all of the doors and windows in your home and turn on any air conditioning or heating that you may have. Turn on items like bathroom fans and hood fans to help encourage signs for leaks. Light a stick of incense and then hold it near the door and window to see if the smoke flutters away or not. If it does, then you know you have a leak.
  • Pay attention to signs. Walk around your home, inside and outside, and look for any signs that your home energy efficiency is not up to par. Some examples of this are things like old or worn weather stripping, caulking and sealing becoming deteriorated, and so on. Look for any gaps between windows, door frames, and the walls they are attached to. When looking at windows look to see if there is any condensation, ice, or frost that is building up on the interior of closed window sashes. If you see any of these things then you know that you have some kind of a leak or other problem that needs to be fixed.
  • Compare temperatures. Compare the temperature in different parts of each room in your home. Within each room there shouldn't be a difference of more than one or two degrees, anything more than that indicate that there is a problem. Some examples of the problems you can find yourself faced with are things like poor air circulation, or even poor seals around doors and windows.
  • Hire a specialist. The most thorough way be evaluating home energy efficiency is to hire a specialist to do the work for you. While this is definitely more expensive than doing the work for you, you can have more in depth testing done. You could get an infrared photo of your home, which will tell you exactly where the trouble spots of your home are (blue usually means cool exteriors and no heat loss, while red means the opposite), and an air infiltration analysis. This test is where the specialist hooks up a blower to a door, turns it on. This will reduce the air pressure in your home and allow the specialist to identify any leaks or other problems around the home.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

MORE FROM LEE

Caring for Pinewood Floors

Pinewood is a wonderful soft wood that can be used in a variety of different ways, including as flooring. However, due to the ...

Discover More

Creating Plant Screens

If you are looking to add a bit of privacy to your home, but don't want an old fashioned fence or a hedge, then you may want ...

Discover More

Troubleshooting a Door Bell

Troubleshooting a door bell is a great way to help determine exactly where a problem lies in your door bell. Not only can ...

Discover More

Cordless, Compact, and Powerful! DeWalt's 18-volt drill-driver kit packs a big punch in a small package, with a powerful high-performance motor tucked away inside a compact design. A great addition to the tool chest of any professional or DIYer! Check out DeWalt 18-Volt Drill/Driver Kit today!

More Home Improvement Tips

Choosing Energy Efficient Light Bulbs

It is becoming more and more popular to make the home as energy efficient as possible. One of the more common methods that ...

Discover More

Becoming More Energy Self Sufficient

In today's economy, who doesn't want to have a little extra money lying around? One of the best ways that you can do that is ...

Discover More

Understanding Caulks and Foams

Understanding caulks and foams is an important step if you are going to choose the best one. After all, these items are an ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 4 + 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)