Three Reasons to Seal and Insulate Your Crawl Space Before Winter

Winter is around the corner. Unless you’ve invested this year in home energy improvements, your home will be as inefficient and uncomfortable this winter as it was last winter.

Winter is around the corner. Unless you’ve invested this year in home energy improvements, your home will be as inefficient and uncomfortable this winter as it was last winter.

If your home has a crawl space, sealing and insulating your crawl space can dramatically improve your home’s comfort, reduce energy bills and improve the quality of air inside your home.

Today’s building science proves that what’s beneath your home affects the comfort inside your home. A home’s natural airflow is from bottom to top (from the ground to sky). As your home naturally breathes, air is drawn up from the basement or crawl space, through the living area and out through the attic. This natural airflow means air from a moist crawl space (and everything in the crawl space air) flows up and into your home’s living area.

Here are three reasons to insulate your crawl space before winter:

  1. Improved Air Quality
    Crawl spaces are naturally damp. As your home breathes, air from your crawl space flows into your home’s living space through penetration points around wiring, plumbing holes and more. This means the air in your crawl space is mingling with the air you breathe every day. Not only is this distasteful, it’s unhealthy. Air sealing and insulating your crawl space will improve the air quality and help keep pollutants out of your home.
  2. Lower energy bills
    Does your furnace run more than you’d like during winter? This is a result of your HVAC system heating air from the crawl space that’s mingling with the air that’s already been heated. This means your HVAC system is continually working to maintain your home’s internal temperature. This results in higher energy bills – and more wear and tear on your HVAC system.
  3. A more comfortable home
    An unfinished crawl space affects your home’s everyday comfort. Are your floors cold? Is your main living area significantly cooler than an upper level of your home? Sealing and insulating your crawl space will help. After a short time in an uncomfortable home, you’ll wish you’d invested in upgrading your crawl space insulation.

You may have other questions about your crawl space. We welcome you to contact us to discuss your specific situation. Ready to upgrade the insulation in your crawl space? Contact us to schedule a free crawl space estimate.



Five Tips to Bring Down Summer Energy Bills

Are high summer energy bills affecting your summer fun? There are many ways to help manage your summer energy bills – some so easy you won’t believe it! Here are five tips to help improve the energy efficiency and comfort of your home.

  1. GRILL OUT.
    If you need another reason for a summer cookout, this is it! Grilling meals outdoors can help keep your home cool by keeping excess heat out of the home.
  2. SEAL AIR LEAKS.
    Sealing air leaks helps keep cool air in and keeps warm air out. Once air leaks are sealed this pays off year round by keeping cold winter air out and warm air in. This also can help minimize stack effect, which can cause the upper level of a home to be excessively warm. Contact our office to schedule an estimate for air sealing.
  3. TURN ON CEILING FANS.
    How easy is this! Turning on ceiling fans will help circulate the cool air inside your home. It also can create a slight breeze that will make the room more comfortable. Take this one step further by running your bath fan. Adding a timer to your bath fan will allow it to run at regular intervals and help pull humid air out of your home.
  4. TUNE UP YOUR HVAC SYSTEM.
    Schedule a service appointment with a qualified contractor to check that the system is running efficiently. Also consider setting your programmable thermostat to a higher setting during the day which can save roughly ten percent on annual energy bills. Don’t have a programmable thermostat? Get one.
  5. SEAL YOUR HOME’S AIR DUCTS.
    Leaky ducts in a home can make it hard for conditioned air to reach each room in your home. This can result in uneven temperatures in your home. As a result you may need to adjust your thermostat, which can affect your energy bills.

Let this be the last summer that your energy bills are high and your home is uncomfortable! Contact our office with questions on these tips or to schedule a free air sealing estimate.

How is your home’s indoor air quality?

Do you think most of the pollutants you breathe come from outside your home? Think again. The majority of our exposure to air pollutants comes from the air we breathe inside buildings – our homes, offices, schools, etc. In fact, indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. The EPA estimates that 72 percent of a person’s chemical exposure happens at home.

There are many ways to improve your indoor air quality. Here are just a few:

Air seal – Sealing air leaks creates a controlled indoor environment. It prevents outdoor pollutants from entering the home and allows an energy auditor to develop a plan to effectively maintain clean indoor air.

Properly ventilate An effective mechanical air system with good filtration can help remove polluted indoor air from the house.

Reduce indoor chemicals Choose low-emitting products for your home. This can include building materials used in your home, furniture, cleaning products, and more.

Have questions about your home’s indoor air quality? Contact our office – our team is happy to help.

Dreading Allergy Season? Air Seal your Home!

Spring is in the air! If you suffer from allergies, you may know that better than most. Spring means grass and plants are in bloom, sending pollen and other allergents through the air that can make allergy sufferers miserable.

Air sealing your home is one way to help reduce indoor allergens. If you or someone in your home suffers from allergies, air sealing can help keep pollen, dust and other irritants out of your home.

The shell of your home (also known as the envelope) has penetration points. These exist around things like ducts, chimneys and between building materials (studs, framing, etc.). These points allow air to enter and exit the home, and can draw outside pollutants and irritants into the air inside your home. Air sealing these penetration points helps keep outside air and allergens out of your home. Air sealing your home has other benefits:

  • Lower bills. Sealing air leaks keeps air that has already been heated or cooled inside your home. Your heating and cooling system has to work less to maintain your home’s interior temperature, which can result in lower energy bills.
  • More comfort. Pests, dust and noise can enter through the same penetration points outside air enters through. By sealing these leaks you’ll maintain your indoor environment and overall comfort.

Interested in air sealing? Contact or call us today for a free Air Sealing estimate!

Five Easy Steps to Prepare Your Home for Winter

With summer just winding down, it may be hard to believe winter is on the way! It’s easy to overlook preparing your home for winter – but it can cost you in high energy bills, equipment malfunctions, home pest issues and more. Here are five easy steps to prepare your home for winter.

1. SEAL AIR LEAKS

Air sealing is one of the least expensive and most effective ways to reduce energy loss and keep energy bills lower during winter. A leaky home can waste approximately 10 to 15 percent of a home’s heating dollars. Air leaks are found around doors and windows, penetration points in the attics (can lights, chimney chases, etc.)

2. CHECK AND UPGRADE YOUR ATTIC INSULATION
Many of today’s homes are under insulated when compared to today’s building codes. After sealing air leaks, adding a layer of blown-in fiberglass insulation to your attic space can further reduce your energy bills and help keep your home comfortable.

3. SEAL AND INSULATE YOUR CRAWL SPACE
Crawl spaces can cause a variety of headaches for homeowners. Because they crawl spaces have direct contact with the earth, they become damp. This is a great breeding ground for mold and mildew, and provides an ideal living space for pests.

4. CHECK YOUR HEATING SYSTEM

Now is the time to schedule your routine inspection of  your home’s heating system. By confirming it’s in good working order, you’ll know it’s working as efficiently as possible – and you’ll help avoid a mid-winter break down.
And don’t forget to change your air filter! Changing it often throughout the year can help your system run more efficiently – and help reduce dust in your home.

5. CHANGE YOUR LIGHT BULBS
Take a quick inventory of the bulbs throughout your home. Upgrading to LED bulbs can reduce your energy bills. During winter’s shorter days, homeowners have lights on more than any other time of year. The investment in LED bulbs will pay off quickly!

Interested in air sealing, upgrading your insulation, or sealing your crawl space? Contact us to schedule your free estimate!

Four Ways Your Crawl Space is Affecting Your Home.

Crawl spaces can create significant problems for homeowners. Is your crawl space insulated and air sealed? Here are four problems that can be lurking in your crawl space, and how insulating and air sealing can help.

1. MOISTURE DAMAGE
Drainage and plumbing problems can create significant problems in a crawl space. Moisture damage in crawl spaces go unnoticed and lead to a host of other problems! Moisture is the number one enemy of a crawl space. Air sealing and insulating your crawl space as well as ensuring proper drainage around your home can help eliminate moisture and the problems associated with it.

2. POOR AIR QUALITY

Although not included in your home’s square footage, the crawl space impacts your home’s interior and has a direct impact on the air quality inside your home. Building science shows airflow in a home naturally goes up, from ground to sky. As your home naturally breathes, moist air flows up and into the living areas of the home through unsealed penetrations points between the crawl space and the first floor of your home (points such as air ducts, wiring holes, holes around plumbing, etc). Any air quality issues in a crawl space are guaranteed to impact your home’s living area.

Have a family member with allergies, asthma or other breathing concerns? Problems in the crawl space like mold and odors can have a direct impact on everyone, in particular family members with these concerns. Air sealing and insulating your crawl space will improve the air quality will help keep these pollutants out of your home, helping to keep your family healthy.

3. CRITTERS
Your crawl space may be providing free room and board to some pesky tenants… and you don’t even know it! Crawl spaces are ideal for pests for a variety of reasons:

  • Damp environments create ideal living conditions for pests.
  • Any heating ducts that are leaking into the crawl space provide warmth during cold months,
  • Wet or damp wood framing provides an excellent food source for termites and other destructive insects.

Air sealing and insulating your crawl space will prevent access points to your crawl space, as well and eliminating these factors that attracted the pests in the first place.

4. LOST ENERGY DOLLARS
If the integrity of your home’s structure and indoor air quality aren’t enough to convince you to insulate and air seal your crawl space, consider what it’s costing you not to. An unfinished crawl space affects your monthly energy bills. An unsealed crawl space can lead to:

  • Cold floors in the winter
  • Uneven temperature between rooms
  • High heating and cooling bills

Your crawl space is a huge opportunity to save energy (and money)! By air sealing and insulating your crawl space you can reduce drafts, eliminate cold floors, keep your home comfortable, and save money on your energy bill each month.

Upgrading your crawl space is an investment in your home, your family’s health and can save money on your energy bills. What are you waiting for? Contact us to schedule your free estimate!