Barron Heating AC Electrical & Plumbing Blog: Archive for the ‘Drafty’ Category

The Right Insulation for Your Part of the Country

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

No matter what part of the country you live in, you do in fact, need home insulation to some degree. The more extreme temperatures that you face throughout the year, the more obvious it will become that you will need to improve your existing level of insulation. For example, if you live in a colder climate, you will know pretty quickly what areas of your home are letting cold air in when a cold snap hits. Those old windows and doors let you know in a very brutal and unforgiving fashion just how much air is coming into your home on a daily basis. This realization can be jarring, but luckily, there are steps you can take to keep the cold at bay in the winter and the hot air outside in the summer!

In this article, we will cover some tips on what kind of insulation is right for your part of the country and the region in which you live. If you live in New England, parts of the West or the Midwest, you already know that insulation is your friend. However, what you may not realize is that not all insulation is created equal. If you find that your home is very cold in the winter, the fact is that you don’t have to live with this problem. Further, this issue is costing you a great deal of money in the form of energy bills that are higher than they need to be.

There are many ways that you can make your home a warmer one. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, older homes often have less insulation than more modern ones. Yet, even if you do have a new home, you can likely recap the cost of your insulation in just a few years. [1] The good news is that if you live in a cold climate, taking steps to improve insulation will help you save money in the summer months as well. Draft proofing is such an easy fix that homeowners often overlook this issue. Easy changes, such as adding insulated curtains and insulated shades, are a quick way to deal with window related issues. Another way is to use insulated strips around your windows. Doors are another problem area, and insulated strips can help there as well.

Aside from windows and doors, you can also consider drafts from floorboards, keyholes, pipework and ceiling to wall joints. [2] Much of your heating loss in the winter may be due to poor insulation in your attic and in your walls. Spray foam insulation can work well in both cases. If you need more attic insulation or wall insulation, spray foam can really do the trick, as it can get into these hard to reach spots and bring your home’s R-value up literally overnight! You might be tempted to use a spray foam insulation kit for this job, but for the most reliable and optimal results, you will want to opt for letting a professional handle it. If you live in a warmer climate, such as the South or Southwest, you will want to keep the cool air produced by your heating and cooling unit on the inside and the hot air on the outside. The points that we have discussed thus far will also work very well for keeping your home cool.

Some additional items you will want to consider are steps such as adding a solar powered attic fan. Attic temperatures can exceed 160 degrees, and an attic fan can reduce costs by up to 30%. [3] A solar powered attic fan will work to keep hot air from building up in your attic. Obviously, a build up of hot air in your attic will make your entire home warmer, so keeping this from occurring should be a top priority. Follow the tips that we have outlined here in this article, and you will find that your home is just the temperature you want it to be year round. Just imagine all that you can do with the considerable amount of money that you will save both this year and in years to come.


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Energy Saver 101: Home Performance Assessment

Thursday, March 2nd, 2017

Having a qualified and experienced inspector perform a Home Performance Assessment is the first step to determining how to best prioritize efficiency upgrades and ultimately save you money on your energy bills.

You may have heard these referred to as Energy Audits, or some similarly negative phrase that leaves a bad taste in your mouth. Instead of looking at this as an anxiety-inducing inspection (thank you, IRS), we find it far more accurate to think of HPAs as a tool for big-picture analysis of your home’s indoor air quality, potential energy-loss areas, evenly-heated rooms, and other issues. Home Performance Assessments are done to better your family’s well-being and safety. We’re on your side!

Your home is likely the biggest investment that you will make; getting a Home Performance Assessment can ensure it operates efficiently, comfortably and safely. A Home Performance Assessment can result in utility bill savings between 20 and 50 percent–with the ever-rising cost of utilities, the potential savings grow each year.

Through utility bill analysis, infiltrometer testing, thermographic imaging, duct leakage and repair, indoor humidity and moisture control, combustion gas analysis, weatherization services and IAQ analysis, a Home Performance Assessment is the best and most comprehensive step for you to take towards saving money and improving your home.

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