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Energy Efficiency Tips for Poorly Insulated Houses

There are several important factors that help determine how well your home can maintain a comfortable indoor temperature throughout the year. Yearly inspections and routine maintenance of your HVAC system can help ensure your HVAC is operating efficiency. 

Another important factor that helps keep your home at an ideal temperature year-round is your insulation. Without proper insulation to minimize heat transfer, it can be difficult to regulate the temperature inside your home efficiently. Although home construction can vary, which means different levels of insulation, we have some tips that can help you maintain indoor efficiency and keep you and your family comfortable this winter.  

How to Keep a Poorly Insulated Home Warm  

Let’s look at some of the easiest and most energy-efficient ways to augment your home’s insulation and keep warm:  

  • Apply plastic seals to your windows. Plastic windows seals are large pieces of plastic that are placed over a window and affixed to the frame. You can think of it much like saran wrap for your window. They’re a good first step because the easiest way for cold air to get into your house is through leaks in your windows. 

  • Use a draft stopper. Draft stoppers, available in two types, help to further seal your door. They may be affixed to the door or removable.  

  • Hang curtains. According to one estimate, drafty windows can add as much as 40% to your energy bill.  Choosing thermal curtains can help to reduce heat transfer on the coldest days of the year.  

  • Add a ductless HVAC system. A ductless HVAC, also called a split system, allows for supplemental heating and cooling where you need it.   

  • Maintain your HVAC system. Insulation serves to keep heat in your house during the winter, but if your furnace isn’t working as well as it could, you might still find your house to feel chilly. Begin by scheduling a total comfort tune-up from your local Aire Serv.  
      

Related TopicPros and Cons of Ductless Heating and Cooling 

What Is Insulation and Why Does It Matter?  

Insulation is any material placed in a wall or attic space to reduce the loss of heat in the summer and cool, conditioned air in the summer. Most homeowners will immediately have images of large clumps of pink fiberglass, but that‘s only one of the major types of insulation.  

The most common insulations you’ll find in homes are

  • Cellulose is a loose-fill insulation, often made from paper products. Loose-fill insulation is composed of many individual pieces as opposed to one large, connected piece. 

  • Fiberglass is the most common type of insulation, made up of millions of tiny fibers coming together to make patches or rolls of a nearly solid material. 

  • Foam insulation is exactly what you’d think, a foam material that is sprayed to apply. When the foam dries it creates a solid insulating layer within your walls.  
      

How to Tell If Your House Is Properly Insulated 

Before looking to solve your insulation problems, first, confirm that you have them. To determine if your home is properly, or poorly, insulated, look for these signs: 

  • Inconsistent temperatures: Is your kitchen warm but your living room is freezing? If your rooms aren’t consistent with temperatures, there’s a high chance your home doesn’t have insulation everywhere that it needs it. This can also show up as cold rooms and cold floors. 

  • Your home feels drafty or cold in the winter and too warm in the summer. 

  • Your heating and cooling bills seem a lot higher than they should be. 

  • Unwanted guests: If insects, mice, bats, or squirrels are finding their way into your home, there are gaps and openings for them to get through. 

  • Frozen pipes: If your pipes are freezing, this could mean that your exterior walls aren’t insulated enough to keep heat in, and your pipes from freezing.  
     

These are not the only signs to look for, but they can be some of the most obvious and early ones to look out for. 

Related TopicHow to Insulate a Fireplace 

Fixing Missing or Bad Insulation 

In many cases, your whole home won’t have insulation issues, just a few key locations. Before jumping into a total home solution, check the insulation in key areas including your attic, basement, and around door jambs.  

Sometimes, though, these other fixes might not be enough to keep your home warm, and it will be better and more cost efficient to re-insulate. If you’re ready to invest in insulation upgrades for your attic or pipes, contact your local Mr. Handyman for help. 

Upgrade or Add to Your HVAC System  

Ensuring your home is comfortable year-round takes a multi-prong approach. Work with your local Aire Serv team to identify opportunities to improve the efficiency of your HVAC system. This can help reduce your energy cost and ensure your system operates at optimal performance all year. Give us a call at, (855) 679-0011 or request an appointment online to get started.