There is a harsh truth to face: The air leakage going on in your home at this very moment may be killing your energy efficiency. Luckily, air sealing can help solve this problem, but you first need to know where to locate the leaks and what to do once you’ve found them. We suggest that you follow a step-by-step plan to seal your home:
Step one: Start with the biggest leaks.
If you fix the biggest leaks first, you’ll quickly resolve a good portion of your leakage problem. Weatherstripping or caulk are typically the solution in these cases, but you first need to find the problem areas. These air leaks usually occur either in the ceiling under an attic or crawl space or in the floor above a basement, or around doors and windows.
Step two: Tackle the midsize leaks.
Next, find some midsize leaks and fill them in with an expandable spray foam. You may find some of these holes in your attic, plus gaps where your furnace flue travels between floors and around your chimney. Another area of concern will often be your ductwork, so make sure you check there, too.
Step three: Finish up with the smallest leaks.
If you have a number of small leaks, these can add up to a substantial waste of energy. The most obvious places are the spaces around switch plates and outlets and around windows. Air sealing in these locations can very often be done with a bit of caulking, as long as they’re not wider than approximately a quarter-inch.
Step four: Call a professional.
If you are having trouble finding the sources of your air leakage problem, or simply want to tackle everything all at once, call an HVAC technician. He or she will perform an evaluation of your entire home to determine where your problems are located. Once found, the technician will design a strategy to seal as many of these leaks as possible.
For more expert advice on air sealing, or for other home comfort concerns, contact the professionals at Davis Air Conditioning & Heating, Inc. We’ve been serving the HVAC needs of the greater Houston area for over 40 years.