Oh, baby, it’s cold outside… and inside, too, if you’re standing close to a drafty window, door, or mysterious source of outside air. Persistent drafts are funny things. They can be massive pains when the wind blows just right, and almost unnoticeable when it’s still, making it both difficult to locate the problem, and hard to keep front of mind as you go about the rest of your week. But if you’ve got a persistent draft, transient or not, this can be the year you solve it. You’ll also save yourself a bundle in home heating and cooling costs throughout the year, so bonus.
Generally, people think to look at windows and doors when a draft is noticed, but what happens when the window doesn’t seem leaky and the door seals tight? Try:
If you can’t find a leak with your bare hands, try using a candle. Turn your ceiling fans and furnace off and run the candle slowly along ceilings, windows, doors, trimwork, outlets, fireplaces, and other potential sources of air loss. If you notice a flicker, mark the spot with a sticky note or other easily removable method. Go room by room, checking carefully in every possible spot.
Once you know where your leaks are, the real work begins. It’s not just enough to know where the leak is; you need to know what to do about it. There are temporary fixes that will help eliminate drafts while you wait for a professional energy audit and weatherproofing, or you can try your hand at sealing common sources of air leaks.
Temporary solutions would include items like:
More permanent solutions include removing trim and installing gap-filling foam, replacing door sweeps, installing gaskets in electrical outlets and junction boxes, taping the gaps in light fixtures, caulking trim work, and repairing fireplace doors and dampers.
If it’s cold inside and you can’t find the source of the problem, you may need an energy audit. These detailed examinations of homes help homeowners better understand the airflow of their homes and learn where improvements can be made to weatherproofing efforts. Some companies will offer both an audit and weatherproofing, making them great places to get more done.
Not sure where to start? Just check in with your HomeKeepr community! There are lots of qualified professionals ready to help you right now, and your network recommendations ensure you’re always getting the very best.