You certainly couldn’t go wrong with a thermal scan. Having a professional thermography performed will pinpoint where air leakage is occurring so you can patch the holes and keep your utility bill under control.
But if you want to take it one step further, you’ll want to go whole hog and have a home energy audit performed.
A whole-home energy audit is exactly what it sounds like—a complete data-driven assessment of your home’s energy use. It treats your home like a whole system, taking into account the building envelope, heating, A/C, lighting, appliances, etc. Looking at how these individual components function together is the best way to determine cost-effective solutions for a home’s energy problems.
Auditors have many specialized tools in their arsenal, including infrared cameras and carbon monoxide detectors, and perform many measurable tests, including blower door tests, back-draft testing, and appliance safety checks.
An audit report is provided, outlining the results and suggested repairs and solutions. Then it’s up to the homeowner to make the repairs or hire professionals to undertake them.
Having a professional energy audit performed has many benefits, including:
- Specifically identifies problem areas that visual inspections alone can’t do
- Allows you to take advantage of the knowledge of a professionally trained auditor to “see” things a typical homeowner can’t
- Immediately identifies problems so you can take quick action to fix them
- Pinpoints the best and most cost-effective solutions for energy- and money-savings
- Uncover potential health risks
- Help save the environment
If a whole-house energy audit is something you’re interested in, you’ll wanted to find a certified, accredited auditor through either the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) or the Building Performance Institute (BPI). Both national organizations rigorously train and certify auditors to inspect residential energy performance and hold them to certain standards.
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