Don’t Make These Little Mistakes with Your Weatherproofing

 

Weatherproofing your home is key for keeping you and your family comfortable throughout the changing seasons. Proper weatherproofing ensures that your home is not wasting energy nor overworking your heating and cooling systems. No matter what time of year, be sure that you’re not making these common mistakes with your weatherproofing:

Ignoring Drafts

Drafts can be easy to ignore because they tend to be isolated to certain areas in your home, but these small air leaks in your home can end up costing you big money. When you notice a draft in your home, whether it’s from a window, exterior door, attic, or near an exterior utility cut-out, you should tend to it immediately. Caulking or adding weather-stripping to these areas can go far in keeping unwanted air from coming in as well as keeping the warm or cool air from your HVAC system from escaping.

If you don’t know where drafts may be located in your home, but you have a sneaking suspicion that your house has them, light a candle and slowly walk it around the perimeter of your home’s interior. Concentrate your efforts around windows and doors. If the candle’s flame flickers, that’s a pretty good indication that you’ve got a draft that needs to be sealed appropriately.

Skimping on Weatherproofing Materials

Not buying enough weatherproofing materials is a common mistake. You don’t want to skimp on the caulking or weather-stripping to save a few bucks. If these areas are not properly sealed, or the material spread too thinly, they will not protect your home from drafts. Attic insulation is another area that you don’t want to skimp on. Insulation in this area can cause heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer, which is exactly the opposite of what you need to make your home comfortable.

Before starting your project, take proper inventory of how many drafts you have in your home, where the drafts occur, and what materials you’ll need to combat them. Measure the length of areas needing to be covered, and be sure to check how much coverage your materials provide. Generally, you can seal about two average sized windows with one tube of caulking material. Also, purchase the highest quality material you can afford. If you purchase high quality weatherproofing materials from the start, they will protect your home against drafts for years to come.

Putting it Off

In general, putting off weatherproofing your home will only end up costing you a lot of wasted home energy over time. If you’re putting it off because you don’t want to invest the money, just consider all the energy that is being wasted from drafts coming into your home. Bite the bullet and weather-proof your home; that way, you’ll be guaranteed comfort no matter what the temperature is outdoors.  

Overlooking Your HVAC System

Be sure to take proper care of your HVAC system. An inefficient system will only end up causing you trouble and cause uneven (and uncomfortable) temperature fluctuations in your home. One of the easiest ways to make sure your HVAC system is running smoothly and efficiently is to schedule a maintenance service with our team at AB&B. We are experts in making sure your HVAC system is ready to go up against any type of weather.
Call us today to find out more: Austin: 512-670-8883 | Bastrop: 512-549-4808

5 Easy Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

It’s always a smart idea to consider the energy efficiency of your home and where you can cut back on energy usage. Conserving energy isn’t just good for the environment, it’s pretty nice on your wallet as well. By using less energy in your home, the costs associated with your energy bills will effortlessly decrease.

5 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

With these 5 easy to implement tips, you can start saving today!

Turn Your Thermostat Down (or Up):

No matter what the temperature is outside, you can cut out a good amount of energy usage by adjusting your thermostat just a little bit lower or higher than you normally would. During colder months, instead of trying to maintain a toasty 72ºF in your home for 24 hours straight, decrease the thermostat to 68ºF for 8 to 10 hours. In the summertime, do the same, but set it to a warmer temperature than you normally would. It’s estimated that for every degree you adjust, you’ll save about 3% on energy costs. This trick works especially well during the hours you are sleeping or away.

Use Sunlight:

You can utilize the power of the sun right now without any need for expensive solar panels. During the daytime in the winter, open the shades or blinds of south facing windows and glass doors to allow in heat and light from the sun. In the summer, utilize the sun for its natural indoor lighting during those extended hours of daylight. You’ll be able to cut costs on heating and electricity by tapping into this natural resource.

Turn Off the Lights!

When a room is unoccupied, be sure to turn off all incandescent lights—even if you only plan to be gone from the room for a short time. These lights use up to 90% of their energy simply to produce heat, and only the remaining 10% is dedicated to creating light. With compact fluorescent lamps (CFL), the general rule is to turn the lights off if you plan to be away from the room for 15 minutes, but leave them on if you plan to return within 15 minutes. Switching to LED lamps whenever possible will also help cut down on excess energy usage from lighting

Seal Drafts:

Air leaks from the outdoors can cause your home to have uncomfortable drafty spots or cause cool air conditioned air to seep out. And, since your HVAC system tries to maintain a steady temperature in your home, air leaks in your home can cause your HVAC system to work harder than it needs to. By sealing these drafts, either with weather stripping or caulking, you’ll be able to save on excess heating and cooling costs. Plus, during the colder months, you’ll keep those pesky drafts out.

Get Your HVAC System Inspected:

An easy way to improve your home’s energy efficiency is to have a HVAC technician perform regular maintenance on your heating and cooling units. By getting regular maintenance, you’ll be reassured that your system is working efficiently. A faulty unit could be costing you a lot of extra money to maintain; if there are any issues, a professional HVAC technician can address them right away. If you haven’t had maintenance performed on your HVAC system in the past year, give us a call: 512-670-8883

Having Trouble with Your Home Cooling Bills? Upgrade Your AC to Reduce Costs Next Year

Saving money on utilities is not as hard as people seem to think. If we were more vigilant and paid attention our energy consumption would be something we could easily control. Air conditioning is great to have for obvious reasons, it improves the quality of the air we breathe indoor and most importantly, keeps us cool when the temperature is unbearable. It can be hard to survive the summer without air-conditioning but air conditioners have gotten a bad rap for being energy hogs. Thankfully, technology has evolved and we now have advanced design systems that are efficient but and energy efficient. if you have an old air conditioning system that is not that efficient but there are certain upgrades that you can make to get the most out of your air conditioner and improve the efficiency of your AC and reduce its energy consumption.

How to Improve Energy Efficiency

The efficiency of air conditioners is referred to as SEER rating, which stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. The higher the rating is the greater the air conditioning system is, however, there has been legislation passed by governments in a bid to save the overall energy consumption in residential building and commercial building with HVAC systems. Under the new laws, residential air conditioning system should have a minimum rating of 13 SEER. Older systems have a lower rating of 7- 10 SEER.

Add a dehumidifier

A dehumidifier can help you run the actual AC less often. This is because most of the time when the air around is hot, it has less humidity. Humidity makes it hard for you to cool down naturally. To counter the drop in humidity people end up turning the AC down and running it at a colder setting than necessary. If you have a humidifier you can save money because the temperature in a room will not be affected by humidity and you might notice that you don’t have to turn your AC that often.

Use Zone Control

Zone control systems work within the ductwork. It works by having a series of dampers that open and close to regulate airflow into different rooms. This means instead of cooling an entire building, you can only cool one room or area that you are occupying and not waste energy cooling unoccupied rooms. Zone control is also good at cooling those areas that don’t always get the best air flowing through them. This all means you use energy efficiently in spaces that need air conditioning.

Install an automation system

There are technological advances that have been with regard to automated systems for air conditions. Upgrade to one that enables you to control your system remotely on a smartphone. It is easy to see or work out how much your air conditioner affects the overall energy consumption in your home.

Always compare the cost of an upgrade and the lifespan, it will have in relation to the cost of a new system that already has the required energy rating. Upgrading your old system with a SEER of 7-10 to a SEER 13 level can reduce your electricity consumption by 21- 42%.

We offer specialist services that will assess your home and the condition of your current AC system to help you identify the most efficient upgrade you can make. Contact us now to learn more about our air conditioning services.