What is Energy Star?
Energy Star is the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency. It identifies homes and more than 40 types of products and services that meet strict guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). With Energy Star, consumers can save energy and money without sacrificing performance.
The EPA provides important recommendations on products and installations to get the most in comfort and energy savings. Saving energy helps protect the environment by reducing air pollution and global warming associated with energy production.
What is home sealing?
Home sealing is a process recommended by EPA to help increase the comfort and energy efficiency of your home by improving the seal of “envelope” – the outer walls, ceiling windows, and floors.
Do you have hidden air leaks?
Air leaks can make your home uncomfortable. In the winter you may experience drafty windows and doors, cold walls or ceilings, and ice build-up. In the summer you may experience uncomfortably hot ceilings or rooms, no matter how low the A/C is set. All of these examples are symptoms of air leaks or poor insulation.
There are many ways to fix air leaks, such as caulking, using spray foam, and weather stripping smaller cracks and gaps. Plywood, drywall and rigid foam insulation may be used for plugging larger holes. Sheet metal and high-temperature caulking can be used to close gaps around chimneys and furnace flues.
Do you have enough insulation?
Adding insulation can reduce the amount of energy it takes to heat and cool your home and can help provide consistent comfort in every part of your home, especially when the outside temperatures are the most extreme. It is important to seal air leaks before adding insulation.
To improve the envelope of your home it is important to:
- Work with a home energy professional and/or insulation contractor for the best results. They can test your home and identify areas for improvement and energy-saving upgrades.
- Seal air leaks to stop drafts and get the full R-value from your insulation.
- Add insulation to stay comfortable during periods of extreme temperatures.
- Choose Energy Star qualified windows when replacing old windows.
What are the benefits of home sealing?
- Improved comfort during winter and summer
- Lower energy use which means lower energy bills
- A quieter home with less noise entering from outside
- Fewer holes for pollen, dust, pollution, and insects to enter the home
- Improved durability by reducing movement of moist air through the building structure