Heat is naturally drawn upward. That’s why over 25 percent of your energy costs can go through the roof of your house if you don’t take measures to stop it. It’s the basics that count. Seal air leaks, insulate and make sure your HVAC system is operating at full efficiency.
Heat on its way up and out of your house follows a few predictable paths. Through cracks and poorly sealed joints, it may enter wall voids and then rise into your attic. Heat can also escape through the ceiling via gaps around light fixtures and HVAC duct registers. Caulking and spray foam can be used to seal those openings. Larger gaps or holes may require drywall, plywood or rigid foam to close them. Access points into the attic such as hatches and pull-down stairways are good candidates for weather-stripping to prevent heat loss. Leaks are also common through breaches around chimneys and metal furnace flues. Caulking designed for high-temperature applications or sheet metal should be utilized in those areas.
Once the leaks are sealed, make sure your attic insulation is sufficient to both minimize heat transfer from the living spaces below and prevent heat from exiting through the roof. The most effective attic strategy consists of 6- to 8-inch beds of roll-out or loose fill insulation above the ceiling combined with radiant or reflective insulation on the underside of the roof.
Have an HVAC pro evaluate your system, including undertaking a ductwork inspection. Duct leaks, particularly at joints, are another source of high energy costs. Major components like the heat exchanger should be inspected, as should operation of blower fans and thermostat controls. If your system is 15 years or older, it’s probably time to start thinking about a replacement.
Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning has led the way in HVAC technology in the Fresno area for over 40 years. Contact us for more advice on how to hold down energy costs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about energy costs and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning services the greater Fresno area in California. Visit our website to see our special offers and get started today!