Are you hyperactive in reducing the monthly energy bills of your home? Well, now you can easily get the bills reduced by your own – Opting for a DIY home energy audit.
Saving energy at home is considered to be one of the most important points. As the home is one of our major investments, taking good care of it is also a responsibility. But many times, you might come across increasing energy bills day by day. What can be the reason behind it? Well, due to unwanted leaks, unnecessary dripping faucets, gaps indoors, and more are some of the common reason.
So what can be done for preventing such a situation? Hiring a professional home energy audit company to inspect your home is a great idea. However, a professional energy auditing company might end up costing you bank. This is why, to reduce energy costs, a DIY (Do-It-Yourself) home energy audit is the right answer.
This “DIY” home energy audit will not be as deep as a professional home energy audit; however, it can assist you to identify some of the simple areas to address the leak. While inspecting your home, keep a checklist of regions you have checked and addressed the problems. This checklist will enable you to prioritize your home energy saver criteria. However, it is not advised to assume that just due your home is recently built–or even new–that there are no chances to save energy. Well, with the help of implementing energy-saving technology such as energy saving bulbs, lights, energy-saving appliances, it has been easier for homeowners to make an energy audit on their own.
With the help of these points mentionedbelow, you will easily come to know about the flaws in your home that is increasing energy consumption:
Let’s get started!
Step 1 – Identify the air leaks
Air leaks are considered to be one of the chief causes of unnecessary energy consumption in your home, and getting rid of them can help you save almost 10 to 30 percent of your yearly energy costs. So this is why it is important to tackle them first. Here are the smartest and most efficient ways to identify them:
- Close all windows, fireplace flues, and exterior doors, but leave all doors inside the home open.
- On all exhaust fans that releases air outside your home, i.e. your bathroom fans, clothes dryer, or stove vents.
- You can also try lighting an incense stick and walk through the edges of common leak sites (switch plates, electrical outlets, door/window frames, vents,attic hatches, and anywhere else where two different types of materials intersect).
So, wherever you address the smoke wavers blowing into the room or sucking out, there’s an air leak. Identify this location and make a note of it, and come back later to seal it properly. However, if you do not have incense ready, you can also make the use of a damp hand t address leaks. Any air leaks will feel cool to your skin.
Step 2 – Inspect your ceiling insulation
Well, heat loss through walls and ceiling could end up costing your bank if the walls or ceilings are less insulated than required. However, to inspect and ensure your home’s insulation is accurate, you need to figure out two important things:
- The current amount of insulation for homes in your area
- How much insulation you currently have in your home.
With the help of the below-mentioned pointers, it would be easy for you to check the amount of insulation required in your home.
- Grab a torch with a measuring tape and climb up the attic to measure the insulation used in your home.
- Address the type of insulation and measure the depth of the same.
- Calculate the insulation in your walls and ceiling.
Once, you’ve measured the quantity, check with a local insulating company around and ask for the right amount of insulation required in your home. This way you can easily cut down the cost of energy consumption in your home.
Step 3 – Inspect your home heating and cooling appliances
Inspecting cooling and heating appliances annually, or as advised by the manufacturer works as a boon to homeowners. If your home has a forced-air furnace, inspect your filters and replace as frequently as needed. However, you should replace them about once every month or two, specially at the time of high usage of such appliances. All you need is to have a professional inspect and clean your appliances once a year.
Yet, if your appliances are more than 15 years old, you should ensure replacing your cooling and heating system with one of the newer and energy-efficient appliances. A new appliance would efficiently reduce your home energy consumption, particularly if the existing appliances are in poor condition. Also inspect your ductwork for dust streaks, specially near seams. These address air leaks and they should be filled up with the help of duct mastic. Insulate any pipes or ducts that are going through unheated spaces. However, for efficient results, insulation R-Value of 6 is the advised minimum.
Step 4 – Good lighting is important
Did you know that energy for lighting considers at least 10% of your energy bill? Address the light bulbs in your house and ensure to replace it with a more efficient choice of light bulbs, such as compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), energy-saving incandescents, or light-emitting diodes (LEDs).
When you’re purchasing bulbs, it is important to look for the brightness of the bulbs you want and ask for lumens and the Lighting Facts label. Your energy utility may offer refunds or other incentives buying energy-efficient bulbs. However, it is advisable to consider ways to use controls such as dimmers,sensors, or timers to limit the use of lighting in your home.
What Questions To Be Asked In Your Whole-house Plan
After you address the exact location from where you’re losing energy, make a plan by asking yourself a few questions as mentioned below:
- How much budget you have decided to spend on energy?
- Where are your maximum energy losses?
- Forhow long you’re planning to own the current home?
- Can you do DIY for home energy audit yourself or do you need a professional?
- Do the energy-saving methods offer additional advantages that are important to you, say, for example, efficient windows or improved comfort from installing double-paned?
- How much time do you have for repairs &maintenance?
The Final Verdict!
Now, it would be clear how you can easily have a DIY (Do-It-Yourself) home energy audit at your home, right? It is not rocket science to inspecting your home. All you need is good knowledge and thorough research to make your energy-efficient in all means.