It's Time to Assess if Your Home is Well Insulated and Energy Efficient
December 23, 2016
Sitting comfortably at home in a warm and cozy space doesn't necessarily mean that the house is energy efficient. And bumping up the thermostat for extra warmth isn't exactly wise energy use. In fact, most homes suffer from some type of inefficiency - mainly because cold air is creeping in, and warm air is escaping. Whether it's a drafty room, or an unusually cold wall, practically every homeowner can relate to these symptoms. Many times its about poorly performing insulation, but it's also about the many sources of air leakage found throughout the building "envelope". When a home is energy efficient, energy consumption is better managed, utility bills are lessened, and the home is comfortable from top to bottom. Conversely, homes that are not energy efficient are needlessly wasting energy and experiencing high utility bills. This is why a good assessment of the home makes sense - and why resolving poor performance actually makes economic sense. Most homeowners can readily identify the obvious symptoms of poor energy performance, but for more complicated problems, it pays to have a professional assess and evaluate at large.
Furnace constantly overworking
When the furnace is overworking, it's a sign that insulation isn't performing at its peak, and air is leaking in and out of the home. All of this is making extra demands on the furnace day-to-day.
Overly high seasonal heating bills
Higher-than-normal heating bills are an easy symptom to detect. What's difficult is to determine why - is it poor weatherization; failing or inadequate insulation; or just undesirable air leakage.
Hanging icicles and/or ice dams
For professionals, hanging icicles (or ice damming) are a definitive symptom of insulation that is under-performing. Here, attic insulation is either old and deteriorating or inadequately installed.
Indoor humidity or condensation
Moisture accumulation, including indoor humidity and condensation, is a sing of trouble. When unattended, this environment can propagate mould, leading to bigger issues beyond insulation.
Fluctuating room temperatures
Unsteady room temperatures are probably one of the most common symptoms for homeowners. Here, the reasons can vary from air leakage, to poor ventilation, to poor insulation performance. Attic or basement, improving the home's insulation is central to enhancing energy efficiency. And while comfort is definitely a benefit, the savings on seasonal utilities are even more meaningful. When professionally installed, high performance insulation is likely one of the best renovations a homeowner can undertake. With an expert touch, new insulation will radically decrease energy usage and lessen both gas and electric bills. But best of all, year after year, the dollar savings gradually offset the cost of the original installation investment. It's simply a win-win situation. Today, there are many government-initiated incentives designed to help homeowners expedite various energy upgrades and retrofits. From air sealing to insulation, it's an ideal opportunity to make improvements to energy efficiency, while taking advantage of cash rebates and incentives to offset the project cost. And with a reputable contractor on hand, homeowners can be assured of the best quality products, professionally installed.