Homeowners are always looking for ways to update their homes. Upgrades to the kitchen and bath, or a fresh coat of paint can add value and look nice. Sometimes the most effective Do It Yourself projects aren’t visible at all. You can improve your indoor comfort and make an impact to your heating and cooling bills by adding or increasing insulation in and around your home.
It may seem that your home is airtight, but there may be cracks, openings and gaps that allow air infiltration resulting in your furnace and air conditioner having to work harder to keep you comfortable. Reduced air filtration will lower you overall energy costs and improve you indoor air quality.
Winter is a good time to inspect for and track down those leaks and seal them up. There are many options offered for sealing around doors and windows. Most of these projects can be completed in a relatively short time, but will last year round.
Starting at the top, determine how much insulation you have in your attic. Depending on the age of your home, you may find as little as 4 inches all the way up to 20 inches of insulation. If you have less than 18 inches, you may want to consider adding an addition layer. Adding insulation to your attic is easy and affordable and there are many products out there to meet your needs.
Sealing up cracks around your doors and windows add up to savings around your home. Check around doors, windows, window mounted air conditioners for areas where weather stripping may have deteriorated or is missing. Careful inspection of the exterior of your home for gaps around pipes and wires, electrical outlets and foundation seals should be done on a yearly basis.
Once you've discovered the location of the leaks in your home, the next step is to resolve the problems. Your local hardware or home improvement stores sell a number of self-adhering weather stripping and window insulation kits that are affordable and effective. To close gaps around pipes and vents, consider purchasing caulk to seal the opening.
To ensure proper air quality in your home, you will want to make sure you have proper ventilation. Ventilation helps to control humidity and air quality. Make sure that you exhaust vents are clean and operating properly. In addition, make sure that you keep whole house humidifiers and air to air exchangers maintained per manufacturers recommendations.