Cool weather is right around the corner. As we get ready for a colder time of year, it is particularly crucial to ensure that your home is adequately sealed. Air leaks can lead to high utility bills and make it difficult to get your home properly heated. Here’s a quick guide to checking your home for air leaks.
Complete an Air Pressure Test
You can quickly check for air leaks with a simple DIY test using household items.
- First, seal your home by completely closing all windows, doors, and vents and turning off all exhaust fans.
- Second, pass a burning incense stick along the edges of all windows, doors, and other openings to the outside.
You’ve found a leak if the smoke is forced away from or into an opening.
Leaks can come from many areas, but here are a few of the common places you can check (often where your incense stick indicated the problem was originally).
- Inspect windows and doors. In order to check for air leaks near your windows, try to rattle the frame, which will reveal any gaps near the edges. Additionally, check for loose screws in locks, cracks in the frame, or gaps anywhere in the window.
- Door thresholds and hinges are common air leak hot spots, so make sure to examine them. Deteriorated weather stripping can also lead to leaks, and the door itself can sometimes develop cracks that allow air to pass through.
- Skylights are a little more difficult to test, but there are still ways to do it yourself. Take a look to check for one dead giveaway of a leak: water stains near your skylights. If you suspect there’s a problem, you’ll have to get on the roof for an up-close inspection. Look for debris, loose shingles, and cracked roofing cement.
Often times these fixes are something any DIYer could handle. I’d recommend going into your local hardware store if you need advice. There is a page dedicated to sealing your home Home Depot that you can visit, by clicking here.