July 20, 2015
During the hottest season of the year, energy bills rise when the HVAC system must work harder to keep the home comfortable. This is particularly the case in homes that feature an ineffective system. Homeowners have numerous opportunities to achieve energy efficiency and comfort in summer months, but insulation is one strategy that is often overlooked. Many homeowners can benefit from understanding the role insulation might play in obtaining affordable comfort.
Barrier to Heat Exchange
Understanding the role of home insulation begins with the principle of heat exchange, in which heat moves from warm spaces to cool spaces. On cold days, the heat tries to move to cool areas outside. On hot days, the heat tries to reach cool places inside the home. To keep a structure cool on summer days, one task is to create a barrier to the transfer of heat. Insulation serves as the critical barrier that prevents this exchange from taking place.
Something many homeowners discover is that even if a home has insulation, it might not be in sufficient quantities to be effective as a barrier to heat exchanges. If the insulation does prove to be inadequate, adding more is a good way to boost the effectiveness of the HVAC system. If insulation is sufficient but the energy bills are unusually high, an energy audit of the home will help to troubleshoot the performance of the system as a whole.
An audit of the home can help to pinpoint the causes of HVAC inefficiencies and other factors that cause energy bills to soar. The results may uncover any number of reasons for energy waste and poor performance. Leaky ducts, poor maintenance and insufficient equipment are frequent culprits. Unsealed drafts and faulty thermostats are other possible sources of unsatisfactory performance.
Poor performance is not, however, always the result of a single problem. Sometimes, an audit reveals several issues that contribute to an efficient system and high energy costs. If any of the issues involve home insulation, though, an HVAC professional can provide guidance on correcting that concern. Follow us for more great articles on heating, air conditioning and home needs.