A home that isn’t energy efficient is wasting both energy and money. On the flip side, improved energy efficiency allows for reduced energy consumption and money savings on utility costs. For the average homeowner, there are countless energy upgrades and retrofits that will contribute to efficiency, savings and home comfort. Often, the dollar savings can offset the cost of upgrades.
Start things off with a Blower Door Test
Blower door tests are performed by Certified Energy Advisors approved by Natural Resources Canada. When expertly implemented, the blower door test is a good first step for any home. Vital information is gathered about the home’s energy efficiency, and cost-effective fixes are offered in order to remedy weaknesses in the building envelope. The idea is for the homeowner to make the energy upgrades and/or retrofits that will deliver the very best return-on-investment. Best of all, “before and after” testing can accurately measure improvements and potential savings.
Determining the need for insulation removal
There are countless reasons for removing old insulation, and a professional assessment is the ideal approach in determining the need and extent of removal. Sometimes, old insulation is just damaged, perhaps because of water leakage or animal contamination. In some cases, insulation may contain material that is harmful, like vermiculite. The best approach for insulation removal is a professional approach – a comprehensive cleanup that is clean and safe, using equipment and techniques that will ensure total removal, and without disturbing the residents of the home.
Various product options for attic insulation
For optimum energy efficiency, an attic space should be sealed, insulated, and ventilated. There are a number of product options to choose from, although many professionals are suggesting spray foam insulation as the ideal. With spray foam, a thermal “blanket” is created that seals and insulates simultaneously. The entire attic space is blanketed, and every little crack gets sealed tight and properly insulated. Professionally installed, spray foam delivers exceptionally high R-Values, while blocking any air leakage and preventing undesirable moisture from collecting.
A viable option for insulating exterior walls
Old home or new, exterior walls can be reinsulated to enhance R-Value and energy efficiency. When expedited properly, insulated walls prevent indoor heated air from escaping in winter, and cooled air from escaping in summer. The “drill-and-fill” approach is both innovative and effective, allowing existing walls to be drilled, and then filled with loose fill insulation. With very little damage, cellulose insulation is blown into the wall cavities, providing enhanced insulation in a cost-effective manner. For homes with little or no wall insulation, this approach delivers results.
Insulating the basement for energy efficiency
In residential basements, controlling airflow and moisture is a prerequisite for ensuring energy efficiency. With spray foam insulation, everything can be accomplished with a single application. The space can be sealed airtight; moisture can be prevented; and high R-Value can be assured. A well-insulated basement provides enhanced energy efficiency for the entire home. And installing spray foam will ensure longevity – there’s no need to replace or replenish the application. For the basement, spray foam insulation delivers long term benefits and excellent return-on-investment.