How To Weatherize Your Home
Whatever the season, summer or winter, weatherizing your home is a smart choice. It helps to keep the cold air out in the winter while keeping the hot air out in the summer. Overall, weatherizing keeps your home well insulated and will result in a more comfortable living space plus you save money on your power bill. We show you easy DIY weatherizing steps using post-it® notes, a dollar bill, and incense. Let’s get started.
Disclosure: Always use protective gear, i.e., clear safety glasses, ventilation mask, and gloves. It is also a good idea to wear a long-sleeved shirt, jeans, and closed-toe shoes.
“DIY home weatherizing,
it’s easier than you may imagine.”
How To Get Started
We help you find air leaks in your home with these three simple items. For this strategy to work most efficiently is to wait for a windy day. Get the few items listed below. These will serve as your tools in pinpointing the exact location of the money-sucking air leaks throughout your house.
- Dollar bill
- 3m® Post-it® Notes
Now it is time to start checking every inch of your home. Put your Post-It® Notes and dollar bill in your pocket and light your incense. Begin by very slowly walking each room and holding your incense near window frames, electrical outlets and trim. Slightly pause and If you see the smoke from your incense being blown away or sucked in then pull out those handy Post-it® notes and stick one in that area to come back later and seal.
Use your dollar bill to add an extra step with inspecting your exterior doors. Close a dollar bill in each exterior door (even check the door from your garage to the house) then tug on the dollar bill, without ripping it of course. If the bill pulls out with ease, mark your door with a Post-it® Note to come back and seal after completing your inspection. Keep reading to learn how to seal these marked areas.
Top Reasons To Weatherize Your Home
If you have been reviewing your power bill lately and are scratching your head at how much it has increased, then you may want to consider weatherizing your home. If you think weatherizing is just for the winter, you may want to reconsider. Even if you do not have air conditioning for those hot smoldering summer days and nights, our tips will be sure to help keep the hot air out.
Your house was built prior to 1990
Pro Tip #92
Cooler Months | On sunny days, keep your shades and curtains open to warm the inside of your home. Then once the sunshine disappears, close your shades and curtains to keep all that warm air inside.
Warmer Months | Reverse the cooler month method. To be even more effective, use shades and drapes that fit tightly on bottom and sides.
You can save up to 40% on your power bill simply by insulating your attic. An enormous loss of energy is due to the ineffective design in attic doors which leaves gaps. There is typically a gap between the attic hatch and the rough cut drywall. These areas are where you want to use caulking around the finish trim or if needed, spray foam seal for larger cracks and spaces. Check out these other areas of interest below.
- Weather-strip and insulate door access
- Seal plumbing vents
- Check roof flashing
- Seal holes between the attic and living spaces
The foundation of your home is an important area to check for air gaps too. Simple enough to check from the outside, walk around the parameter of your home and really inspect every inch for small cracks or holes in the foundation. The holes can be sealed with heavy duty spray foam, clear caulking or concrete. If using spray foam, following the instructions, come back to those areas after it is completely dried and cut or scrape away the excess foam. Be sure you purchase a foam that is paintable to make your patch work match the rest of your foundation.
- Using 3M® HVAC tape, seal accessible heating or A/C ducts
- Using paintable spray foam or clear caulking, seal around plumbing or electrical from crawlspace to living space
Pro Tip #93
Test your bathroom fans for proper ventilation. Turn your fan on and hold a piece of two-ply toilet paper up to your fan. If your fan cannot hold the paper, it’s time for a replacement.
When it comes to weatherizing the exterior of your home it is pretty straight forward. Purchases low odor clear caulking then cut the tip at an angle for easier application. Start by applying the caulk around the outside edges of your windows and doors being certain to cover all overlapping areas.
- Use clear caulking around windows and doors
- Replace dryer vent if not effectively closing
- Remove window A/C or cover and seal tightly with caulking or foam
A quick and efficient way to seal your doors is by installing a door sweep to all exterior doors. For an added layer of seal, you can use weatherstripping to keep outside drafts out. Plus weatherstripping keeps bugs and dust out too.
- Install foam gaskets behind electrical outlets, switches and trim plates.
- Seal cracks with clear caulking or wood glue where the floor and wall meet.
- When not in use, close fireplace damper and consider a tight-fitting glass door.
To recap DIY Home Weatherizing: You will improve your power bill all year long by adding insulation in your attic walls, and all floors. Caulk around your exterior doors and windows on both the inside of your house and the outside.
Remember to get those basement windows too. When it comes to your windows, if you see an excessive amount of condensation present, it may be time for an upgrade. A word to the wise, be sure to get 3 individual quotes from window installers for comparing and require the contractor to provide you with their references. It is also helpful to write a list of questions you may have prior and after the estimate. No question is a dumb question.
These weatherizing tips will help you save money on your power bill all year long and result in a happier home
Please let us know if you have any questions or would like to share your weatherizing experience.
All the best in your home improvement weatherizing project.