Efficiency: Stop Air Leaks

An efficeint HVAC system is only as efficient as the house it heats. If there are air leaks, the most efficient HVAC system won’t work up to its full capability. A home’s HVAc system is arguably its hardest working appliance, and if there are any inefficiencies it’s only going to have to work harder. Here’s a few ways you can better insulate your home to stop air leaks—remember, air leaks don’t just happen in winter and should be addressed regardless the season.

Windows

Windows get a bad rap for leaking air and for good reason. Wintertime is the easiest time to test your window for air leaks. To test for a leak, stand next to the window. If you feel cold air one your skin then your window is likely leaking air; it may feel on your skin as if the air outside is coming in, but it’s actually the opposite happening: the heat from your body is being pulled out. There are a few different places a window can leak. Most obviously a window leaks air from the crack at its opening. To solve the problem, check that the window is shut completely and latched/locked; oftentimes when a window is on the second story a homeowner may not engage the lock, and the lock is actually what seals the window shut. Also, there are a number of insulation products made to prevent a window from leaking air—these products are easy to install, most simply rely on the pressure from the window to hold them in place and are easily removable in the off season when you want the window open.

Doors

Most doors have draft that can be adjusted. If you notice sunlight at the bottom or top seal of the door, the door is leaking air. Adjust the door—you may have to adjust the door with the seasons—so that there are no gaps. You can also replace the weather stripping and insulation around the door, which is a relatively simple project.

Outlets

Oftentimes outlets aren’t considered in the discussion, but an outlet can be just as big a culprit for leaking air. Make sure that there are no gaps around the perimeter of an outlet, and if there are any gaps then replace the outlet cover. Never allow outlets to be without a cover; an outlet without a cover could be a serious air leak.

And if you have any questions about HVAC systems, or would like one of the professions at R and T Services to take a look at your home’s HVAC system—remember that even though the winter is coming to an end your HVAC system should still be serviced before its full-blown summertime and hot—call today.