Owning and maintaining a home in NE Wisconsin presents many challenges due to the range of temperatures that we face throughout our 4 seasons. The heat of the summer and the extreme cold in the winter months is hard to ignore. And if your home is not properly sealed up, or poorly insulated, chances are, you're going to feel it!
As a home inspector in the Green Bay area, and someone who cringes at the sight of my WPS bill every month, I would like to offer some tips to locate and correct some areas in your home that are costing you money every month through energy loss.
1. ELECTRICAL SWITCHES AND OUTLETS ON EXTERIOR WALLS.
It is not uncommon to find gaps between the drywall and electrical boxes installed inside the walls, behind the cover plate. It may seem like a small air leak, but considering the number of outlets throughout the home, and the amount of unconditioned air coming through each one, it all adds up to be pretty significant. Sealing these gaps and installing foam gaskets behind the cover plates will provide some energy savings at very little cost.
2. AIR GAPS BEHIND THE BASEBOARDS ON EXTERIOR WALLS.
A little more labor intensive, but well worth the time and effort. This is a common area for drafts. If you can feel cold air coming in from your baseboards, remove the base molding and seal any visible gaps at the wall/floor connection.
3. CAN LIGHTS INSTALLED ON THE CEILING.
A small gap between the drywall and the light housing allows the heat to flow up and through these voids. When warm air escapes into the attic, it creates a vacuum that pulls cold, outside air through any other openings at lower points throughout the home.
4. ATTIC ACCESS PANELS
It is recommended that all attic access panels located inside the living space be insulated to the level of the rest of the attic. The panel should fit tightly in the opening and be caulked shut. This is essentially a large hole in the ceiling of a home, and should be tightly sealed to minimize heat loss.
A thermal imaging camera is a great tool for locating areas in your home that are costing you $ on your energy bills. Allow your local Green Bay home inspector to conduct a heat loss inspection, and start saving on your energy bills!
For a more thorough inspection, contact Safeguard Home Inspection. 920-606-3804