Ever done a double take when you took a look at your last energy bill? Even though high energy bills can be the result of intense weather events, persistently high bills can quickly suggest an inefficient HVAC system or your home is wasting energy by other means, such as drafty windows or inadequate insulation.
One of the easiest ways to figure out whether your home is consuming too much energy is by hiring a home service professional to complete a home energy audit, also called a home energy assessment. Keep reading to learn all about home energy audits, including what they are and their benefits.
What Is a Home Energy Audit
An energy audit is a thorough inspection of how much energy your home consumes and whether – and where – your home might be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will take a look at older energy bills while completing an energy audit to determine 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 identifying energy-efficient improvements, which can include swapping out your current HVAC system, adding new insulation, plugging up leaks, or replacing drafty windows.
Over the course of the energy assessment, the auditor also completes an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor performs a blower door test on doorways, windows and fireplaces to determine 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 may also include checking your current lighting system.
Benefits of a Home Energy Audit
It can be hard for the ordinary homeowner to know for certain how efficient their home is compared to other similar homes in their neighborhood. However, local energy companies often supply information about where your home stands when compared with similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient in contrast with your neighbors’ homes. This could be a useful starting point to decide if you need an energy audit completed.
Some of the benefits of a home energy audit include:
Recognizing How Efficient Your Home Is
It’s good to understand how efficient your home is and where you’re using up the most energy. For example, if your ducts are leaking air, it can lead to a sizable increase in your energy bills and additional wear and tear on your HVAC system as it has to stay on longer to properly heat or cool your home.
Making Energy-Efficient Upgrades
An energy audit will outline where you need to make energy-efficient improvements to save on energy and lower utility bills. This may include replacing worn-down weatherstripping or buying a new energy-efficient furnace.
Enhancing Health and Safety
Enabling air to leak into your home through doors and windows, or as a result of a lack of insulation can cause excessive moisture to appear, which could negatively impact your home’s humidity levels or lead to mold. This can lead to health problems, particularly for people who have asthma or allergies.
Increasing Your Home’s Retail Value
Energy-efficient homes are desired by homebuyers. You can sell your home sooner or for more money by telling potential buyers that it’s energy efficient.
How to Complete an Energy Audit of Your Home
Although handling an energy audit independently might not be as thorough as hiring a professional, it’ll give you a general idea of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t discover any issues during the DIY test, then you potentially don’t need to call in a professional. Use this step-by-step checklist:
- Inspect your HVAC system. Leaky ducts can lose nearly 20% of conditioned air, resulting in steeper energy bills and greater strain on HVAC equipment. If you discover leaks, use duct tape to seal them. If your HVAC equipment is old and inefficient, upgrading to a new system can save you a significant amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it is better to contact a reputable HVAC company in Boynton Beach to inspect your system.
- Check for air leaks. Air leaks on average can increase your energy bills by 10 to 20%. Inside, look for air leaks in areas where there could be a draft, such as along the edge of flooring and near baseboards and electrical outlets. Outside, you can look for air leaks along 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 functioning properly, and check for evidence of rot or moisture.
Contact A2Z Air Inc for a Professional Energy Audit
If you are interested in professional help figuring out how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, contact the HVAC pros at A2Z Air Inc today. We’ve proudly supported the residents of Boynton Beach with quality home services for a long time. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.