Tracking Your Home’s Energy Efficiency

With temperatures outside dipping below the zero mark, it may be time to audit the energy efficiency of your home. One of the best ways to do this is to get a Professional Energy Audit.

In preparation for an Energy Audit, you should compile a history of past utility bills and a list of any known problems you’re having with the home such as drafty spots or window condensation. The auditor will also examine your home inside and out and ask you questions pertaining to your use habits.

Most audits should include a blower door test and a thermographic scan. The blower door test consists of a fan positioned outward at the main entry door. When all doors and windows in the home are closed and the fan begins to suck air from inside to outside, the technician can measure the amount of air leakage within the home. A thermographic scan uses infrared cameras to measure surface temperatures. Cooler spots register as black, warmer spots register as white on the camera’s sensors. By using this camera, the technician will be able to pinpoint the leakage areas. The technician should also audit your home’s heating system and provide you with an actual percentage of efficiency of the system as compared to what the system claims to achieve.

After the audit, the technician will make recommendations ranging from additional insulation in trouble spots to possible equipment replacement. Many of these improvements may qualify for federal tax credits for Consumer Energy Efficiency. The tax credit will cover 30% of the cost up to $1,500 on existing homes as your principal residence. Tax credits are set to expire December 31, 2010. For a list of what qualifies, see for more information.

To find a professional energy auditor, ask your state or local government energy office for recommendations. Your local electric or gas utility company may also have additional resources. Be sure to ask for references.

Reviewing your home’s energy efficiency is a simple way to save money and live green. By keeping your home’s operating systems functioning at their best, you will be doing your part to reduce needless energy consumption. Plus the money you save on utility bills will be money in your pocket and may help when it comes time to sell your home. Call us and we’ll help you arrange an energy audit of your home 847.866.6868.