June 13th, 2014
The dog days of summer will soon be here (if they aren’t already, depending on what state you live in). Taking a few precautions now will help you keep cool all summer long.
According to our Atlanta-based TrustDale certified partner, Home Energy Solutions, an uninsulated attic is responsible for approximately 15 percent of your energy loss. Other problem areas include windows, exterior doors and chimneys.
To help reduce air loss and keep your home comfortable, follow these tips:
- Determine if the existing attic insulation is sufficient. You’ll want to find out the R-value (a measure of insulation's ability to resist heat traveling through it) to determine what and how much should be added. Of course, if your attic isn’t insulated at all, add insulation immediately! Here’s a chart detailing recommended insulation levels: http://www.energystar.gov/?c=home_sealing.hm_improvement_insulation_table.
- Change your air filter. During heavy use, such as summer, check the filter monthly. If it looks dirty, replace it (you’ll want to change it every three months otherwise). A clogged filter makes your HVAC system work harder and reduces air flow.
- Install a programmable thermostat. Especially useful if you’re away consistently during the week, a programmable thermostat can save you up to 15 percent a year on heating and cooling bills.
- Replace or fix problem doors and windows. If replacing is not in the budget, a professional can provide solutions to stop air leaks.
- Seal and insulate all ducts. According to Energy Star, your home has poorly performing ducts if:
- you have high summer and winter utility bills;
- you have rooms that are difficult to heat and cool;
- you have stuffy rooms that never seem to feel comfortable;
- your ducts are located in an attic, crawlspace or the garage;
- you find tangled or kinked flexible ducts in your system.
Preventative maintenance can go a long way toward helping you stay comfortable and save money this year!