A cold winter is burning up the cash in many people's wallets as higher energy bills are delivered every day to home owners and renters alike. Those triple digit bills, some in the hundreds of dollars, have people looking for answers and solutions to staunch their bleeding bank accounts.
According to experts, the drain on their cash could be coming from a drain on their home; or rather, a leak.
Home Diagnostic Solutions has been booked solid with requests for energy audits this winter.
Will Moyers is an energy auditor with the company. He goes into around two homes per day with a partner looking for the source of the problem.
"It's a matter of, is the air staying in the building, that's your conditioning; is the heat staying in the building, which is your insulation; and is the air that you're pumping into the building actually conditioned properly, which is the mechanical system," said Moyers. "So if you make sure your house is well sealed, you make sure your house is well insulated, and you make sure your HVAC system is running properly and actually performing, you should nip all those problems in the bud."
The entire process takes a few hours. Moyers and his partner, or another pair of auditors, will pressurize the home and look for air leaking into and out of it. They check the attic, look at insulation and do a whole host of things to get the best idea of what the situation is, and why it's occurring.
When they are done, they sit down with the customer and explain the problem to them with a report, using a laptop and pictures.
Then it's up to the customer to decide how to handle the situation from there. Home Diagnostic Solutions doesn't fix the problems, they just identify them.
They do give advice though, and that is getting an energy audit done now as opposed to later.
"Taking care of the problems, cataloguing and getting a game plan together, it's perfect timing for the spring," said Moyers. "That's the time when most of the contractors who do these improvements are not that busy."
Which means you could get a better rate and better quality of work, due to the lack of competing jobs.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a quick fix, you could buy some foam gaskets for your wall sockets and light switch covers. According to Moyers, those are notorious areas for air to be getting into and out of the home.
"Those will help treat the symptom; and understand you are treating the symptom when you are dealing with stuff like that," said Moyers. "The root cause is [a] leakage somewhere in that wall."
Not dealing with the root problem could lead to other issues later in the year.
A wet spring could cause mold and mildew problems; pollen can get into your home through the leak and make your life miserable; and a leak can make keeping your home free of dust, next to impossible, according to Moyers.
People who do get an energy audit done, and take the steps to solve their issues, often see the effort reflected in their energy bills; however, the degree of change varies by case, according to Moyers.
If anything, Moyers says, you'll notice your home is more comfortable than it was previously.
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