Did you perform a double take when you took a look at your last energy bill? Although high energy bills can be the consequence of severe weather events, persistently high bills can quickly indicate an inefficient HVAC system or your home is wasting energy by other means, like drafty windows or insufficient insulation.

An easy way to figure out whether your home is wasting energy is by getting a home service professional to carry out a home energy audit, also called a home energy assessment. Keep reading to learn all about home energy audits, including what they are and their advantages.

What Is a Home Energy Audit?

An energy audit is a thorough inspection of how much energy your home uses and whether – and where – your home could be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will go through older energy bills while completing an energy audit to find out where energy is being consumed and how much.

The ultimate goal of an energy audit is to help homeowners save money on their energy bills by suggesting energy-efficient updates, which may include exchanging your existing HVAC system, putting in new insulation, plugging up leaks, or replacing old windows.

During the energy assessment, the auditor carries out an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor performs a blower door test on doorways, windows and fireplaces to find out if there are air leaks in your home. They’ll also evaluate your home’s HVAC system, including the ductwork, the water heater, and the insulation in your attic. Comprehensive assessments might also include inspecting your current lighting system.

Benefits of a Home Energy Audit

It can be tough for the average homeowner to be sure how efficient their home is versus other similar homes in their community. However, lots of energy companies often offer information about where your home stands when compared with similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient in contrast with your neighbors’ homes. This is a great starting point to figure out if you need an energy audit scheduled.

Several of the benefits of a home energy audit include:

Learning How Efficient Your Home Is

It’s worthwhile to know how efficient your home is and where you’re using the most energy. For example, if your ducts are damaged, it will result in a large increase in your energy bills and increased wear and tear on your HVAC system as it has to run longer to fully heat or cool your home.

Making Energy-Efficient Upgrades

An energy audit should reveal where you need to make energy-efficient upgrades to conserve energy and decrease utility bills. This might include replacing worn-down weatherstripping or getting a new energy-efficient furnace.

Enhancing Health and Safety

Allowing air to slip into your home via doors and windows, or because of a lack of insulation can cause excessive moisture to build up, which can negatively influence your home’s humidity levels or lead to mold. This can cause health issues, especially for people dealing with asthma or allergies.

Increasing Your Home’s Retail Value

Energy-efficient homes are preferred by homebuyers. You can sell your home much faster or for more money by demonstrating to potential buyers that it’s energy efficient.

How to Complete an Energy Audit of Your Home

Although handling an energy audit independently may not be as comprehensive as hiring a professional, it’ll offer a broad sense of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t discover any problems during the DIY test, then you likely don’t need to bring in a professional. Follow this step-by-step checklist:

  • Review your HVAC system. Broken ducts can lose as much as 20% of conditioned air, resulting in higher energy bills and increased wear and tear on HVAC equipment. If you discover leaks, use duct tape to close them. If your HVAC equipment is old and inefficient, upgrading to a new system can save you a significant amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it is better to hire a reputable HVAC company to inspect your system.
  • Watch for signs of air leaks. Air leaks on average can raise your energy bills by 10 to 20%. Inside, look for air leaks in areas where there is a draft, like along the edge of flooring and along baseboards and electrical outlets. Outside, you can look for air leaks along the home’s foundation, siding and mortar. Plug, caulk or seal any air leaks to save money.
  • Inspect insulation. If your home is older, it could mean your insulation is too. If you can see the joists, you likely need more insulation.
  • Check the ventilation. Check that all of your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are functioning properly, and check for evidence of rot or moisture.

Contact Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation for a Professional Energy Audit

If you are interested in professional help finding out how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, call the HVAC professionals at Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation today. We’ve proudly serviced the residents of Holbrook with quality home services for many years. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.