There are plenty of reasons why your energy bills skyrocket. It could be air leaks through windows, doors or unforeseen holes and even the wrong choice of appliances. Often, these causes are left unattended, which is why it burns a deeper hole in your pocket every time.
The best way to understand just how much energy you’re consuming (and wasting) is by conducting a home energy audit. There are plenty of ways to go about this. That’s why in order for you to understand it better, we’ve come up with a simple guide to home energy audits.
Below are the different types of home energy audits, how it can benefit you as well as other things you must keep in mind as a homeowner and a responsible energy consumer.
What is a home energy audit?
Otherwise known as a home energy assessment, a home energy audit is the process of evaluating just how much energy you are consuming at home as well as identifying the ways on how you can make your home more energy-efficient. A proper home energy audit shows you problems if any and how to properly correct them to save you significant energy in the future.
Different types of energy audit
There are different types of energy audit, depending on what the purpose is, what the extent of the problems may be and how much you are willing to invest in it.
- Home energy survey
This kind of energy audit pertains to a visual inspection of certain aspects in your home that are consuming energy or causing problems that lead to excessive consumption. This does not include the use of any diagnostic tools and equipment. Here are some of the components of a basic energy survey:
- Windows, doors, insulation, ventilation, ducts
- Appliance and lighting characteristics
- Comfort complaints
- Visible moisture issues
- Visible health and safety issues
- DIY home energy audit
A DIY home energy audit is another form of assessment wherein homeowners personally inspect their homes themselves. From locating air leaks to checking ceiling insulation and everything in between, this is the kind of audit we don’t recommend everyone doing especially if you don’t know what to look for. However, those who have enough experience can conduct a simple DIY energy audit to save some money.
Unlike a basic home energy survey, be sure to be more thorough this time. Be guided by information available online and as recommended by professionals.
- Professional energy audit
This is the kind of home energy audit that we highly recommend everyone gets. Professional energy auditors know what to look for, what could be amiss, and the many ways you can save a lot more energy.
If you are going to hire a professional energy auditor, make sure they are well-equipped, and work legally in your area. It’s usually a consultant or a contractor who will conduct home energy audits. If you are going to invest in them, they should at the very least conduct a blow door test and infrared. It’s also best to check if they are credited and are certified for the job.
Benefits of home energy audits
There are many reasons why you should have your home audited for energy as often as you can. Below are some of its top benefits.
- Saves you money
Energy bills can constitute a big bulk of a household’s expenses. This is where energy audits can be extremely helpful. When you know fully well how much you are consuming and have your problems fixed by a professional, you are bound to save a lot more money in your bills that you can finally spend on other necessities.
- Improves home comfort
Those tiny leaks are things you may not notice at first. However, they are already contributing to the certain level of discomfort you could be feeling when you’re trying to relax and stay warm or cool. Once professional energy auditors get to assess your home and repair any problems, you’re going to feel a big difference afterwards. From the heating and insulation to ventilation, your house is about to feel like a home once again.
- Unearth hidden problems
Like we previously mentioned, leaks and air pockets aren’t detected easily. In fact, a lot of them go unnoticed for years. When a professional comes over to do a proper energy audit, those hidden problems will finally be unearthed and addressed once and for all.
- Increases your home’s market value
When the time comes that you want to sell your house, having it audited for energy consumption will help increase its market value. When all of those problems have been addressed, you now have a better shot at getting a return on your investment that’s much more substantial.