In most cases, homeowners consider their properties to be an investment. After all, you’ve likely worked hard and saved up to purchase a home. Considering that, it’s wise to minimize any types of additional expenses that come with owning a home. A large portion of these expenses is often associated with energy usage. Therefore, many homeowners find it beneficial to have a home energy audit conducted. In this post, you’ll learn how to prepare for this audit and what it typically entails.
Getting Ready for an Energy Audit
One of the main sources of additional energy expenses goes toward heating and cooling costs. Statistics show that heating and cooling costs account for 54% of an average homeowners yearly utility bills. Considering that, it’s wise to have past utility bills ready before a home energy audit begins.
It’s wise to have at least a year’s worth of bills on hand. You should easily be able to obtain copies of these bills from your utility company. This allows energy auditors to know your energy usage. In addition, this helps these auditors to spot any issues which allow them to know where to begin looking.
You might also need to answer typical questions regarding how energy is used throughout your home. Don’t worry, most of these questions shouldn’t require a lot of thought to answer. In addition, it’s understandable if you’re simply unable to answer some of these questions. Providing as much information as possible will help energy auditors to begin providing immediate solutions.
What a Typical Energy Audit Entails
In most cases, an energy auditor will want to know the reasons behind your need for an audit. Usually, homeowners have energy audits conducted in order to avoid costly utility bills. This can happen for a wide range of reasons. Therefore, it’s important to note any and all energy related problems you’ve noticed in the past.
Next, the actual energy audit will begin. On average, this audit should only last a few hours. The exact amount of time is dependent on the size of your home. Therefore, smaller homes might take less time while larger properties will take more.
Worse Case Energy Tests
An important aspect of an energy audit is learning the maximum energy levels of your home. This information is obtained through conducting a worst case spillage test. During this test, it’s common for basically everything that utilizes energy to be turned on at once.
Determining the Efficiency of Your Home’s Insulation
Data gathered from the United States Department of Energy found that 25-40% of the energy used for heating and cooling purposes is wasted. Considering that, much of this waste could be due to poor insulation. You’ll find that insulation is a critical component of any home. This material allows your home to be protected against outside air. Homes with optimal insulation are easily able to stay cool in the summer and warm during the winter. In other cases, worn down insulation isn’t going to offer much help in keeping your home at the right temperature.
Finding Sources of Air Leakage
While it’s important for homes to be properly insulated, it’s also wise to avoid any sources of air leakage. As parts of a home begin to wear down, they often lose their structural stability. In turn, the doors leading to the outside of your home could be major sources of wasted energy.
Therefore, energy auditors typically perform what are known as blower door tests. These tests usually involve placing a small device near door jams. In turn, these devices monitor if and how much air is escaping outside of your home.
In closing, it’s important for homeowners to consider having a home energy audit conducted. Whether it’s heating and cooling concerns or other issues, energy auditors work to find what’s causing utility bills to skyrocket. In turn, you’ll usually receive a report or some other type of documentation indicating the energy auditor’s findings and recommendations. If you’re tired of paying costly utility bills, contact a home energy auditing company.