No matter how efficient your HVAC equipment, if your home itself isn't energy efficient, you're wasting money. An energy audit helps you find points of energy loss around your home so you can take steps that will lower your utility bills and improve your comfort.
In many Delaware area homes, energy loss is primarily due to air leaks and insufficient insulation. While you can identify certain problem areas yourself, an HVAC technician works with specialized equipment that provides more accurate results.
Blower door test
One of the most common tests conducted during a professional energy audit, the blower door test measures your home's airtightness. The test involves depressurizing the house using a large fan mounted in an exterior doorway. The low indoor air pressure exaggerates air leaks, making it easy to find even small leaks. Once identified, the leaks can be sealed with caulk, weatherstripping or another appropriate material.
The PFT (PerFluorocarbon tracer) gas technique also identifies air leaks. Unlike the blower door test, the PFT technique accounts for factors that vary over time, such as atmospheric pressure and wind velocity. The test uses two small devices placed in your home: one to emit a harmless, odorless PerFluorocarbon gas and the other to receive and measure the gas. Lower concentrations of gas in the receiver indicate air infiltration.
This type of testing, also known as infrared scanning, identifies areas of energy loss due to heat transfer, which is usually due to a lack of insulation. For the most accurate type of test, the technician uses a thermal imaging camera to capture images of your home. Areas of energy loss appear in easily identifiable colors. These are areas where you may benefit from adding insulation.
For answers to your questions about improving your home's energy efficiency contact us at Sobieski Services. We can also recommend energy-saving home improvement jobs and equipment upgrades based on your needs. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).
Image Credit: Green Energy Futures