Energy Evaluations: What Your Contractor Should Look For
Like most homeowners, you’re probably intent on improving your home’s energy efficiency. However, it’s not easy to do if you don’t know where your home is losing energy or lacking efficiency. The answer is an energy evaluation. Conducted by a skilled professional, the evaluation will pinpoint problem areas and produce an action plan for improving energy efficiency in your home.
First you’ll want to choose a contractor to perform the energy evaluation. Energy audits can save you hundreds of dollars every year. But once you’ve found a good contractor, what should you expect him to do? Before the evaluation starts, you should be ready with a few things:
- Prepare a list of issues that you’re aware of, such as drafts, uneven heating or cooling, or problems with moisture in certain areas.
- Have your energy bills ready, so the technician can chart your energy usage patterns, and compare them to other homes similar in size and type to yours.
- Be ready to answer questions about how your home is run on a daily basis. When your contractor arrives, the first thing he’ll do is inspect the exterior of your home. He should take notes of the number and size of windows and the wall area measurement. He should look at any suspected areas of energy loss along the foundation and roof lines.
- Once inside, he’ll likely conduct a blower door test that will show how much air is leaking from (or infiltrating into) your house and where the leaks are located.
Next a thermographic camera will scan your walls to see where insulation is lacking. The auditor should inspect your HVAC equipment, water heater, ductwork and thermostat for proper operation. Even the type of light bulbs you use might be energy thieves. Good energy evaluations will point out every way for your home to become more energy efficient. Once you know where air is leaking from your home, where insulation can be improved, and how your HVAC equipment can be upgraded, you’ll be well on the road to optimal energy efficiency.
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). Contact us at Sobieski Services, Inc.
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