How to Perform Your Own Energy Tests at Home

How to Perform Your Own Energy Tests at HomeMaybe you’ve heard of how home energy audits can help you save by locating places where you’re wasting energy in your home. But maybe you aren’t quite ready to shell out for a professional home energy audit. So while we recommend a professional auditor with the right equipment for the job to get the best results, you may want to do a more limited home energy audit on your own.

Here are some energy tests and other things you can do to bring your bills down right away.

Make a list

Do a walk-through of your home, assessing areas where you think energy is being wasted. This will help you prioritize repairs, choosing either to repair the biggest energy wasters first, or addressing those that are easy repairs, and less costly.

Find air leaks

Locate air leaks by either holding your hand next to windows, doors, pipes, electrical switches or plugs, or any place where there might be a crack, gap or hole from the interior of the home to the exterior. In the winter, you should feel cold air moving inside. You can also light an incense stick and wave it next to the opening. If the smoke wavers, there’s probably a leak.

Seal air leaks

Sealing air leaks is relatively easy and inexpensive. Use insulation strips on windows and around doors, foam gaskets on electrical plates or sealant around window and door frames. Don’t forget the ductwork, if it’s accessible. Check it for holes or loose segments, and repair them with mastic sealant and foil tape (no duct tape — it won’t hold).

Check out the lighting

Inspect all your light bulbs. If you’re still using high-wattage bulbs, switch to more efficient options such as fluorescent bulbs, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) or more efficient incandescents.

Eliminate energy vampires

Check all your electrical devices — computers, chargers, TVs, DVD players, toaster — and unplug those that aren’t being used. Many of these appliances draw power when plugged in.

To learn more about home energy tests, contact Cool Power. We serve Long Island and the surrounding area since 1976.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hauppauge, New York and the Long Island area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about TOPIC and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 631-292-0629.

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