What is home weatherization and how can it put more money in your wallet?
Home Weatherization in Atlanta
By Connie Hannah
If you are looking for ways to cut your costs each month and put more money in your wallet, consider home weatherization.
How do you know what the energy issues are on the interior and exterior of your home? Finding out these issues involves a review of the interior and exterior of your home by a home remodeling specialist. Once the energy issues are identified, the remodeling contractor can complete the repairs necessary to make your home more comfortable and energy-efficient.
Let's look at the different areas of your home that the energy inspection will cover and possible solutions to these common energy wasting culprits.
The hot or arctic attic
Your home's attic has several key areas that need addressing in your energy inspection. The door frame leading to the attic is surrounded with weather-stripping. This stripping will cut the amount of air, hot or cold, that is able to escape from the attic area and seep into the living space of the home.
Also in the attic area, the flashing around the chimney needs to be securely attached, and the insulation should be plentiful and appropriately rated for the type weather conditions in your area.
A local remodeling company can inspect your attic and repair any weather-stripping, flashing or insulation issues that are found during the inspection.
The breezy basement
The basement in your home is also vulnerable to energy waste. In order to cut the amount of energy wasted in this area, the heating and air ductwork should be free from tears or leaks and the basement windows properly hung and caulked. Check all the entry points for utilities to make sure they are caulked and sealed properly.
There are many professional remodeling companies that specialize in leak detection and repair.
The all-important exterior
The exterior of your home usually consists of many areas that have cracks, holes or fractures. Whether your finish is siding, brick or stucco, all three can have these issues. A good energy inspection can show these problems and offer solutions such as filling the damaged area with caulk or foam insulation. You cannot stop the air if you do not stop the leak.
Another issue you may not usually think about is the dryer vent. If the vent cover is damaged or removed, hot or cold air is able to sneak around the vent and come into your home. By replacing or repairing the vent cover, you reduce the amount of air coming in and affecting the comfort of the home.
Do you have wires or cables coming from the outside, through the walls and into your living space? If so, check carefully for gaps in the materials surrounding the cable box, power meter and air conditioner unit. If gaps are found during your energy inspection, these areas need repairing with caulk or foam insulation.
A few of the simple fixes such as caulking, foam insulation and patching can usually be done by you, the homeowner. However, you will want the more complex repairs performed by a general contractor who has knowledge in the weatherization process.
Drafty windows and doors
Windows and doors are some of the largest contributors to energy loss in your home. Follow the few simple steps below, and you'll find your home to be less drafty--and that equals money in your pocket.
First, make sure there is plenty of caulking around all the window panes. If the caulk around the glass is old or thinly applied, the putty holding the glass in place needs removing or replaced. This can sometimes be tricky and requires a contractor who specializes in windows and doors to complete the job for you.
Speaking of a window and door contractor, if your home is 25 years old or older, you will most likely find that the windows and doors need to be replaced. As the home ages, the manufacturing process of the windows starts to deteriorate from age, wear and UV rays. This deterioration will cause the energy efficiency of your home to decrease substantially and increase your utility bills.
Age, weather conditions and old materials will also impact your doors. If the doors are in good enough condition to repair, weather-stripping will be a good friend of yours. Take a roll of weather-stripping and attach it to the frame surrounding the door. Make sure you do this for all doors in your home such as patio or porch doors, garage doors and any door that could be a source of energy loss. If you can place a business card under an exterior door, you will need to replace or adjust the door's threshold seal.
A well-informed door and window contractor knows the latest models of high-efficiency windows and doors, as well as any government incentives or rebates available for homeowners who improve their properties for optimal heating and cooling.
Keep uninvited guest out
Last but not least, by sealing holes, cracks and any other damage to your home, you are keeping uninvited guests outside where they belong. If you don't give them a way in, they will stay out. By staying out, these critters cannot get into the walls, chew electrical wires or spread germs and diseases.
Hopefully by reading this article, you will consider having your home inspected for energy- and money-saving repairs and updates. By spending a relatively small amount of money to bring your home up to today's energy standards, in the long run, the savings will more than cover your costs.
In the metro Atlanta area, there are a lot of well-qualified, professional contractors who specialize in home remodeling. Find a remodeling contractor today and begin filling your wallet with your savings.
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