As winter creeps towards us, it’s time to say goodbye to the long days of summer and start shutting windows in preparation for winter. Yet, even if the windows are closed, there is still cold air that may circulate in some homes. While some automatically assume it’s the heating system, it may actually be much simpler than that. Better insulation and air sealing (draft-proofing) is an effective and inexpensive way to keep valuable heat inside and high energy usage down.
Heat can escape through leaky windows, doors, attics and foundations; resulting in a drafty home and a higher heating bill. Draft proofing and insulation should be the first steps you take when looking to make your home more energy efficient.
However, before you start any upgrades to your home, it’s always a good idea to contact Efficiency Nova Scotia. Efficiency Nova Scotia (www.efficiencyns.ca) can help you find ways to reduce heating costs while saving energy with their EnerGuide for Houses program that offers up to $7,000 in rebates to make energy efficient updates.
Besides the savings, your home will become more comfortable and quiet.
With the cooler months just around the corner, now is the time to properly draft-proof and insulate your home for lower heating bills, improved humidity control and a greater sense of comfort.
• Caulking is applied to reduce drafts where two surfaces meet but do not move. Although the application of caulking may require a little more effort and skill than weather-stripping, it is just as important when cutting heat loss from your home. Caulk between the framing and the wall to seal gaps and holes around any windows that do not open, and around any water pipes and vents.
• Weather-stripping is used to control air leaks where two surfaces meet and move relative to each other such as doors and windows. As with caulking, a proper weather-stripping job requires that you select the correct tools, adequately prepare the surfaces to which the weather-stripping will be applied, and properly install the material. For more information on how to properly check for leaks and seal a draft, visit www.efficiencyns.ca
• Insulate and seal your heating ducts to avoid air escaping or entering your heating system, which can increase your energy costs.
• Once you’ve draft-proofed your home, it’s important to maintain proper moisture levels and air quality with a well-functioning ventilation system.