When the Central Pennsylvania summer is at its hottest, homeowners are running to their thermostats and air conditioners to keep their house cool and comfortable. But if your home isn’t properly protected against the elements, cranking up your cooling system will raise your energy costs just as dramatically. Here at Energy Smart Home Improvement, we know air sealing is as important as insulation when it comes to home performance. Let us explain why.
Understanding How Insulation and Air Sealing Works
In the hottest summer months, the heat and hot air outside are working to infiltrate your living space. It can do this in two ways. The first is via radiant heat from the sun beating down on your home, which can make its way through building materials, like your exterior walls and roof, inside. Insulation is the main source of protection against this transfer of heat.
But there is a second and equally important reason why temperatures can rise indoors during the summer, and that’s when actual hot outdoor air gets inside through leaks and cracks in your house. Most insulation is a great barrier against conductive heat transfer, but is a poor line of defense against air flow. That’s where air sealing comes into play, sealing up all the little gaps and holes where warm air can sneak inside.
Why and Where Air Sealing Will Help
Together, insulation and air sealing offer superior protection against the summer heat. When it’s harder for heat to enter and your conditioned cool air to escape, the energy efficiency of your home increases and your cooling systems don’t need to work as hard. As a result, your electric bills will drop and your indoor air quality will increase. It will feel cooler inside, and comfortable temperatures can be maintained throughout your house, even during the hottest parts of the day.
“Okay”, you say. “I understand the benefits, but what parts of my house are in need of air sealing?” The short answer is: wherever there is insulation, since you want the two to be working in tandem with each other. But here are some of the common areas where air sealing can make a significant difference in your home’s energy efficiency:
The connection between your house and an attached garage
Attic floors (around recessed lighting and ceiling fans)
Basements and crawlspaces (around plumbing and chimney chases)
Call Energy Smart Home Improvement to Air Seal Your Home
The above recommendations cover the general areas where many homes could benefit from air sealing. But every Pennsylvania home is different — and yours is no exception. The best way to pinpoint exactly where upgraded insulation and air sealing work could best benefit you is with an energy audit.
The energy efficiency experts at Energy Smart Home Improvement will run state-of-the-art diagnostic tests like infrared camera analysis and blower door tests to create a comprehensive picture of the strengths and weaknesses in your current home performance. Then we’ll recommend a list of upgrades that can keep your home cool and lower your energy bill. It’s as simple as that.