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                Email: info@tacomaenergy.org

 

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Blower Door Verification
Air Tightness Test

Having your home properly air sealed is critical to your energy conservation efforts and greatly impacts your utility bills. You can save up to 30% of your energy costs by air sealing multiple points of your home where energy losses occur. Additionally, air leaks are also a major cause of discomfort, moisture problems and even poor air quality.

Where Air Leakage Occurs:

The US Department of Energy shows how  much air leakage
occurs in various locations of an average American home:

  • Ceiling, Walls and Floors – 31%
  • Ducts – 15%
  • Fireplace – 14%
  • Plumbing Penetrations – 13%
  • Doors – 11%
  • Windows – 10%
  • Fans and Vents – 4%
  • Electrical Outlets – 2%


These figures provide you with the most important areas to target for
air sealing. However, a home energy audit will pinpoint the exact
locations of air loss and assess your entire home’s energy consumption
and waste, and recommend ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency.

Exterior of Your Home

The exterior of your home is often referred to as the “envelope” or the
“shell”. Sealing your home against air infiltration (air leaking in from the
outside) and air ex-filtration (air leaking from inside of the house to the
outside) helps to reduce your energy expenditures.

As a builder or homeowner, you can greatly improve your home’s energy efficiency by sealing as many entry points as possible. Check seams between the top of the foundation wall and the wood framing, doors and windows, along baseboards, through electrical receptacles and switches mounted on exterior walls, fireplaces, laundry chutes, attic hatchway
doors and pull-down stairs, whole-house fan installations and pipe and
wire penetrations.

Interior of Your Home

To ensure that air doesn’t leak from the outside of your home
to the inside, check the following:

  • Baseboards and Floors:
        Any gaps left between baseboards and hard floors can be filled
        with latex caulk.
  • Gaskets:
        Check switches and electrical outlets – they may feel cold or you
        may feel a cold draft. You can block these drafts form the inside of
        your house by installing inexpensive insulated gaskets or air sealing
        with foam.
       (Caution: to avoid electrical shock, remove the covers from switches

         and receptacles only after you have shut off the power.)
  • Recessed Ceiling Lights:
        On new construction always use IC-Rated recessed lighting. This allows
        for insulation to cover the gasketed unit. Older types of recessed lighting
        can be extremely leaky and difficult to make airtight. Often, the best
        solution is to build an airtight box of flame-resistant material (i.e. sheet
        metal or drywall) at least 3 inches larger the light’s housing to cover the
        portion of the fixture that is in the attic. You will need to pay attention
        to fire code regulations.
  • Attic Floor:
        The top floor ceiling in your home acts as a containment barrier to
        rising warm air. Any small hole or a gap in that area will create an
        outlet for warm air to escape. As the air exits through the top floor
        ceiling, it will create a slight negative pressure inside your house and
        the air leaving will need to be replaced. That air will come from the
        outside of the house and will need to be heated – requiring additional
        use of your furnace, which costs you money. Checking for cracks, holes
        of small openings in the attic floor will result in substantial energy savin
    gs.
  • Attic:
        Sealing and insulating your attic is one of the most critical steps to
        ensuring that your home is properly air sealed. Most attics have
        insulation which helps reduce heat loss. But it won’t stop the air flow.
        Insulation can actually conceal cracks, gaps and holes through which
        the pressurized air from your home is driven into the attic. Check for
        staining in the insulation, which is an indicator of an air leak.

Whether you’re a builder or
homeowner we can test, verify
and solve your air infiltration
needs. Give us a call so we may
work with you on your energy
air leakage needs.

855.8TACOMA          (855.882.2662)

Tacoma Energy®

"Saving You Money and Energy One Home at a Time"®

 


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  Energy Star Version 3  


Tacoma Energy, in an effort to continue our support
of the Energy Star Program we have added the
Energy Star version 3 revision (6) checklist to our
link below. Let us show you how simple
Energy Star version 3 really is! 
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Energy_Star_Version_3_Checklist

 


We are proud to provide rating services to qualify new homes for the ENERGY STAR® label.

 

ENERGY STAR® qualified new homes are substantially more energy efficient than homes built to the minimum code

requirements. Even in states with more rigorous energy codes, the U.S. EPA ensures that ENERGY STAR® remains

the symbol for truly energy-efficient performance. These homes are good for businesses, consumers, and the environment.


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