Air sealing is the process of keeping the proper amounts of clean, conditioned air within the home and unconditioned, contaminated air outside the home. Air sealing the leaks in your home is one of the top recommended home corrections from the ENERGY STAR program. Many of the measures that are part of the air sealing process come with tax advantages under the State and Federal programs.
The average home has 70 percent more air changes than are necessary. Excess air movement results in higher utility bills, unhealthy air and irritation for you and your family. Air sealing and controlling excess air changes will bring you and your family lower energy bills, greater concentrations of fresh clean air and greater comfort year round.
See video project examples of air sealing:
How do you know if you need air sealing?
- Do you have dark carpet stains close to your walls?
- Do you have dust that congregates on your ceiling fans?
- Have you ever had a failed fan in a furnace or air handler?
- Do you deal with more dust in your home than you would like to?
- Do your allergy symptoms stay the same or get worse when you are at home?
If you answered yes to any one or more of these questions then air sealing is a process that would likely be beneficial. Contact the Home Energy Detective for a home energy audit to see how much sealing your home would help.
Before you air seal you need to know that there are varying degrees of sealing, the process can be limited or extensive. The range of your project is determined by the severity of the leaks in your home and the budget for the project.
Simple air sealing projects encompass sealing the movement of air from one or two of the buffer zones in your home (attic, crawlspace, garage, knee walls and mechanical room). More extensive projects will seal all surfaces of the home, make it air tight and then introduce controlled amounts of fresh uncontaminated air.
Things that you may not now about air sealing your home:
- Air sealing will reduce the amount of earth gasses that enter the air that you breathe from your crawlspace.
- Air sealing will dramatically reduce the amount of lung irritants entering the conditioned space of your home.
- Air sealing assists the control of humidity in your home. It reduces the amount of excess humidity in the summer, and helps retain humidity in the winter.
- Materials for air sealing qualify for Federal and State energy tax credits.
- Air sealing diminishes the amount of air traveling through switches, plugs, around door and window trim as well as top plate openings.
- Air sealing moderates the amount of air getting into the home through exterior cracks and fissures.
- Air sealing enhances the efficiency of exhaust fans, driers and ventilation equipment.
- Complete air sealing projects result in a zero draft home retrofit.
After air sealing your home it is imperative to have a combustion appliance zone test performed to insure that back drafting or carbon monoxide risks are not created. The Home Energy Detective and all other contractors in the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program, take this step with every air sealing project. When you contact the Home Energy Detective you can rest easy knowing that the safety of your family is our number one priority!