Thursday, October 6, 2022

Saving Money, Energy Through Home Weatherization

September 13, 2022 by  
Filed under Highlights

As autumn approaches, now is the best time to plan ahead and prepare your home for the cooler weather. Weatherizing your home is a simple — and sensible — way to reduce your energy bills. ENERGY STAR estimates that you can save up to 20 percent on heating and cooling costs just by insulating and sealing your home against air leaks. 

Insulation acts as a shield for your home, blocking the loss of heat in the winter. The three types of insulation recommended by Southwest Gas are attic, floor and window insulation. The attic is the easiest location to add insulation and is suggested as a barrier for homes built prior to 1980 or if you experience excessively high energy bills. Floor insulation prevents heat loss through crawl spaces or basements where warm air can escape at a rapid pace. Window insulation is accomplished by installing double panes with either vinyl or fiberglass frames. 

The most common sources of air leaks are recessed lights, attic entrances, air ducts, door and window frames, and electrical outlets. Southwest Gas suggests testing for air leaks around your home to ensure you’re using energy efficiently. One test involves shutting a door or window on a piece of paper. If you’re able to pull the paper out without it tearing, there is a good chance your home is losing energy. A second way to test for air leaks is by using a flashlight after dark to check for rays of light around doors and windows. If you can see light from the opposite side, you don’t have an airtight seal and may be losing energy. Finally, you can manually check for drafts by moistening your hand and running it around the edges of doors and windows when it’s cold or windy. If you feel a draft, air is passing in and out of your home. 

Those air leaks can easily be sealed using caulk. There are several types of caulks — so it is recommended that you compare the strength and properties to select the best option for your home. Caulk should be used around window and door frames, exterior openings such as pipes and water faucets, skylights, and at corners formed by siding. 

More weathering tips and ways to save both energy and money are available at swgas.com. 

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