Home Efficiency Checklist

How Efficient Is Your Home?

Are you aware there are a number of easy inexpensive “do it yourself’ projects that will reduce your heating and cooling costs and also make your home a healthier more comfortable place to live.

A new heating or cooling unit will not make your house more energy efficient. The only way to reduce your heating and cooling requirements is to tighten up the structure itself. The following is a “checklist” for you to go through to identify any problem areas in your home.

Attic
Insulate the attic to R-49. If it is over R-30, goonto other items before adding additional insulation. R-30 is approximately10 inches of fiberglass batt or cellulose.
Attic vents need to be unobstructed and open to provide adequateair ventilation.
Caulk electrical wire penetrations at the top of the interior wallsand wires into ceiling fixtures.
Insulate attic access door by attaching extruded (pink or blue)foam insulation to the backside.
Weather-strip attic access door.
Seal around the plumbing stack(s).
Seal around the chimney using a high temperature sealant such asmuffler cement and metal flashing where necessary.
Seal all other holes between the heated space and the attic.

Main Level
Check weather-stripping on windows and doors.
Install foam gasket on all wall outlets and switches, and use childsafety plugs backed with gasket punch-outs to keep the cold air fromcoming through the sockets.
Caulk along baseboards with a clear sealant.
If you have a room air conditioner, remove it for the winter orseal it up and insulate it.
When unable to replace an inefficient window, install plastic overthe inside of the window. If you desire something more permanentthan plastic, install an interior storm window.
Replace broken glass and any loose caulking.
Replace your old leaky windows. Use low expanding foam around thenew window woodwork, caulk where the frame meets the wall and allother joints in the window woodwork with a clear sealant.
Replace an old warped entry door with a new insulated door.

If You Have A Fireplace
Check to make sure the damper is closed tightly whennot in use.
Install tight fitting glass doors and/or make a decorative insulatedcover for it.
Install a top sealing damper.
Provide outside air for combustion.

Exterior
Caulk around all penetrations such as telephone, cable,gas, dryer vents, electrical outlets, water faucets, etc.
Caulk around window and doorframes.
If you have combination storms, caulk around the storm windowswhere the metals meet the window frame. If you have wooden stormsthat must be exchanged for screens in the summer, use rope caulkto seal around the storm.
Install storm windows on all single-glazed windows.
Install storm door where you have none.
If you are re-siding, consider adding 3/4” to 1 1/2” ofextruded foam insulation with taped seams.
Keep dryer vent screens lint free.

Basement
Seal the band joist with caulk or foam.
Seal any holes in the foundation wall with caulk or foam sealant.
Caulk around the basement windows.
If you have a crawl space, place a layer of plastic on the dirtfloor. Insulate the walls by hanging fiberglass batts down them andout two feet onto the floor.

Insulate The Basement Walls In One Of The Following Ways
  1. Interior – use 2×2 furring strips with 1 1/2 inch extruded (pink or blue) foam insulation between the strips and cover with drywall.
  2. Interior – build a 2×4 wall, insulate with batt insulation and cover with drywall or paneling.
  3. If you have a floor over an unheated space, such as a tucked-undergarage, insulate the space between the floor and garage to R-21or greater.

Note: The energy savings and installed cost will vary significantly, thus the cost effectiveness of each measure should be evaluated on a case by case basis.