Take a look at these tips on how to find and eliminate drafts in your home.
If there’s one area of your home that’s particularly drafty, there’s a good chance there are other spots as well. You can get them fixed before they add another cent to your heating bill!
Test Doors and Windows
If you have old, outdated windows or doors, you’ve felt air currents or heard whistling sounds coming from them on windy days. In order to find exactly where the draft is coming in, try doing the dollar test.
For this simple test, close a window or door on a dollar bill. If the bill slides out smoothly without snagging, that’s where your gap is.
Other Hidden Culprits
While window and door drafts are usually the most noticeable, they’re not necessarily the biggest offenders when it comes to energy loss in your home. There are quite a few other areas where cracks and gaps commonly occur. Make sure to examine these locations thoroughly:
- Fireplace flues
- Lighting fixtures, particularly recessed lights
- Attic hatches
- Electrical outlets and other openings for wires
- Furnace and dryer vents
- Where two different materials join, such as where the foundation meets wood framing, siding connects with the chimney, and exterior brick or siding touches the foundation.
Once you’ve finished your visual inspection, there’s a simple test you can use to find any cracks you may have missed. On the next cool, windy day, close all of your doors, windows and fireplace flues, and turn off all your gas appliances. Then hold a stick of incense or a lit candle near the typical problem areas mentioned above. If the flame of the candle flickers or blows out, or the incense smoke moves to the side or is drawn into or out of the room, there’s your air leak.
The Fix To Eliminate Drafts
It’s fairly easy and inexpensive to eliminate drafts in doors, windows and other areas using these basic products:
- Self-adhesive foam weatherstripping. Seal gaps around windows and doors using this type of weatherstripping. Simply peel, stick and apply the product to the bottom of windows and the outside edge of any door frames.
- Caulking. Caulk is a great material for sealing small cracks. There are a variety of different types of caulk for different applications. Do a little research to make sure you choose the right one.
- Expandable foam. This type of sealant comes in an aerosol can and works well for filling in larger gaps throughout the house. It’s easy to apply via a spray tube attached to the nozzle. Just remember to clean out the spray tube after each use, or the foam will dry and clog the tube.
Attics are another area that sees a lot of energy loss, when heated indoor air escapes up and out through your roofing. If you want to save money on your energy bills this winter, call Muth & Company Roofing at (614) 682-3060 and schedule an attic energy inspection to determine if your attic is adequately insulated.