Last week we took advantage of our local gas company’s offer of a subsidized energy-use audit. Overall, it was a very worthwhile experience. (An aside: I’m not sure why the gas company wants to encourage us to use less gas. But, I’m happy to.)
Energy costs in this house are synonymous with wintertime heating, and therefore insulation. (And, I suppose, food heating, but I’m not going to start baking bread in the microwave.) Last week was warm (I’ll spare you the photograph of our living-room thermostat reading 95F [*]), which made for nice thermal images of where the exterior air was leaking in.
That’s on our semi-finished third floor. Yes, it says 120. The windows were closed, and a giant fan was pulling the first floor pressure down, which in turned pulled air from the stifling, uninsulated section of the attic into the insulated part. This was before the auditor happily crawled through said uninsulated section to examine the orientation of an exhaust fan. Like I said, worthwhile.
I left with a medium sized list of low-hanging insulation projects, identified with the negative-pressure smoke test and recorded as a directory full of unusual looking interior photos – when I have enough tape and foam handy, I’ll enlist neighborhood kids to locate the spots. (Hmm, conduit poking through a floorboard hole at an angle, near a nail…)
[*] Edit: no, I won’t!