Air Leaks: What to Know in Your Home Before Winter
You’ve cleaned your gutters, consulted with your roofing contractor, and made sure your siding is all set to go—you’re thoroughly prepared this year for the first snow to fly! Or so you think. One potential home hazard that can majorly hike your energy bills this year often flies under the radar. Since it can also lead to such issues as water damage and problems with humidity control, it benefits you to tackle it before the snow hits the ground.
This hazard: Air leaks. Below, Haggerty Windows & Siding, your preferred Urbandale siding company and roofing repair service provider, discusses how to handle this sneaky foe—what it is, where and how to find them, and how to rid your home of them for good.
What Are Air Leaks?
Your home is designed to be airtight—with some exceptions meant for ventilation. When your home’s replacement windows or the like are compromised, interior and exterior mix; this is known as an air leak. They have major implications for your energy bills, especially as the temperatures plummet.
If your heating system’s treated air is partially being pumped outdoors, you’re throwing money down the drain! They also can lead to issues with humidity regulation in the home, which promotes mold growth. Yuck!
Where Can I Find Air Leaks?
The short answer: anywhere your home meets the outdoors. The long answer is a bit more complicated. While it’s technically true that you can find air leaks anywhere, they tend to crop up in your home’s “seams,” such as corners or where there is a break in the wall for something like a window to be installed.
According to the United States Department of Energy, the following is a non exhaustive list of common places you may find air leaks inside the home:
- Electrical outlets
- Switch plates
- Door and window frames
- Electrical and gas service entrances
- Weather stripping around doors
- Fireplace dampers
- Attic hatches
- Wall- or window-mounted air conditioners.
- Cable TV and phone lines
- Where dryer vents pass through walls
- Vents and fans.
How Do I Find Air Leaks?
The ways you can do so are practically endless. For instance, some air leaks may be visible if you shine a flashlight at them on a dark night. This method is particularly useful if you’re trying to find areas you need to caulk or weatherstrip. Dirty spots on insulation, per the U.S. Department of Energy, also can indicate an air leak—and you’ll need to hire an insulation contractor to do some replacement.
As far as fixing leaks? That’s always better done with the help of a roofing, siding, or insulation pro.
Haggerty Windows & Siding: Let Us Help Winterize Your Home
From new vinyl siding to roof replacement to insulation installation and more, we’re the one team of contractors you need to get your home ready for the cold months. Reach our Urbandale office today at 515-953-6999.