How to Seal Drafts in Your Home to Save Money on Heating

Whether you’ve opted for the charm and character of an older home or you’ve decided that newer construction is more your style, you’ll find that becoming a homeowner comes with all kinds of obligations in the way of maintenance and repairs. Obviously, older homes are going to require a bit more finessing from the get-go in order to ensure a functional and livable space, whereas newer construction comes with many of the modern amenities most homeowners crave (not to mention current plumbing and electrical considerations). But having a newer house won’t alleviate the need for regular inspections and basic maintenance and repairs. And over time, you might start to notice that there are drafts in your home where none existed before. Older homes are particularly prone to this occurrence, but new construction is not exempt. So if you’re looking for ways to make your home more energy efficient and save some money on heating in the process, sealing the leaks that lead to drafts is a good place to start.

Of course, you first have to figure out where the drafts in your home are coming from, and this can be a little tricky. While there are certainly tests you can do on your own, such as shining a flashlight around door seams and lighting incense to see where the smoke drifts, you might get better results by hiring a home energy auditor. You can start by calling your local power provider to see if they offer the service; if not they can probably recommend an outside vendor for the job. This professional will come to your home and perform a series of tests with specialized equipment in order to assess your structure and find all the areas where energy waste is occurring. From there he’ll provide you with a comprehensive report detailing issues in your home so that you can get to work sealing the structure.

Gaps around windows and doors are the most common points of egress, but all you generally need to address these issues is some cheap weather stripping from the hardware store. You might also have leaks around pipes, vents, and ductwork, but it’s nothing that a little caulk, foam, or tape can’t handle at very little expense (provided you’re willing to get your hands dirty). Of course, you could face more serious issues, such as substandard windows or deteriorated or otherwise insufficient insulation. In these cases the repairs might be a little more expensive.

If single-paned glass is your problem, upgrading to double-paned products is going to cost you a pretty penny. A less expensive but equally suitable option would be to get storm windows for the winter, so you can save a little cash here. As for insulation, you could roll out some new batting in the attic or add a little fill to the walls, but eventually you might have to undergo more invasive procedures to make sure your insulation is up to snuff. Of course, the upside is that you can get rid of pesky drafts and keep your home warm and cozy all winter with much lower utility bills thanks to increased energy efficiency. And over time your efforts should pay for themselves, and then some. Of course, there could also be reasonsĀ why you should consider an HVAC upgrade, and you’ll want to assess those as well. But sealing up the leaks in your home and getting rid of drafts is a good place to start when it comes to energy efficiency.

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  3. 5 Tips for Cheap Winter Heating Bills
  4. 5 Air Conditioning Tips That Save Homeowners Time and Money
  5. 5 Ways to Keep Your House Warm in Winter Without a Home Heating System
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