Ever done a double take when you took a look at your last energy bill? Although high energy bills can be the consequence of severe weather events, persistently high bills can often indicate an inefficient HVAC system or your home is wasting energy because of other means, including drafty windows or insufficient insulation.
An easy way to determine whether your home is consuming too much energy is by calling a home service expert to complete a home energy audit, also called a home energy assessment. Keep reading to find out more 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 uses and whether – and where – your home might be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will take a look at older energy bills in the course of an energy audit to find out where energy is being wasted and how much.
The ultimate goal of an energy audit is to help homeowners save money on their energy bills by recommending energy-efficient improvements, which might include swapping out your existing HVAC system, adding new insulation, sealing up leaks, or replacing old windows.
During the energy assessment, the auditor also completes an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor will perform 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 inspecting your current lighting system.
Benefits of a Home Energy Audit
It can be difficult for the ordinary homeowner to know for sure how efficient their home is compared to other similar homes in their community. However, lots of energy companies often offer information about where your home is ranked when compared with similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient versus your neighbors’ homes. This could be a great starting point to decide if you need an energy audit performed.
Several of the benefits of a home energy audit include:
Recognizing How Efficient Your Home Is
It’s good to learn more about how efficient your home is and where you’re consuming the most energy. For example, if your ducts are damaged, it can cause a significant increase in your energy bills and increased wear and tear on your HVAC system since it has to stay on longer to properly heat or cool your home.
Making Energy-Efficient Updates
An energy audit should expose where you need to make energy-efficient improvements to conserve energy and reduce utility bills. This can include replacing old weatherstripping or buying a new energy-efficient furnace.
Enhancing Health and Safety
Allowing air to leak into your home via doors and windows, or due to a lack of insulation can cause excessive moisture to form, which could negatively affect your home’s humidity levels or produce mold. This can cause health conditions, particularly for people dealing with asthma or allergies.
Raising Your Home’s Retail Value
Energy-efficient homes are preferred by homebuyers. You can sell your home more quickly or for more money by showing possible buyers that it’s energy efficient.
How to Complete an Energy Audit of Your Home
Although completing an energy audit independently will not be as thorough as choosing a professional, it’ll give you a general sense of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t discover any issues during the DIY test, then you probably don’t need to bring in a professional. Use this step-by-step checklist:
- Inspect your HVAC system. Broken ducts can lose as much as 20% of conditioned air, resulting in steeper energy bills and excess strain on HVAC equipment. If you discover leaks, use duct tape to plug them. If your HVAC equipment is old and wearing down, upgrading to a new system can save you a substantial amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it might be better to contact a reputable HVAC company in Central Point to inspect your system.
- Look for air leaks. Air leaks on average can raise your energy bills by 10 to 20%. Inside, look for air leaks in areas where there is a draft, including along the edge of flooring and near baseboards and electrical outlets. Outside, you can inspect for air leaks around the home’s foundation, siding and mortar. Plug, caulk or seal any air leaks to save money.
- Inspect 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 the ventilation. Make sure that all of your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are working properly, and look for evidence of rot or moisture.
Contact Titan Heating & Air Conditioning for a Professional Energy Audit
If you want professional help determining how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, call the HVAC experts at Titan Heating & Air Conditioning today. We’ve proudly serviced the residents of Central Point with quality home services for years. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.