A couple of weeks ago here on "Your Home," we talked about how to seal up drafty doors and windows. As the cold weather really starts to take hold, Ryan Peterson thought it'd be beneficial to address the real culprit when it comes to losing heat during the winter.
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“All houses have what is called the 'chimney effect.' Cold air leaks in from the basement and heads all the way up to the attic. 40 percent to 50 percent of all your heat, you're losing out the top of your house,” said Ryan Moore, ZeroDraft.
No matter what you heat your house with, if it's not sealed up as tight as it could be, that's your money, as well as your heat, that's flying right out the top of your house. An attic that isn't insulated properly can lead to problems a lot worse than a bigger utility bill.
“You don't want to use your attic for storage. You want to make sure that the attic is insulated fully and that you have a nice solid layer of insulation so that your heat stops right there at your ceiling. Heat in your attic is a very bad thing. It prevents snow melt, it can cause ice dams and it can even cause moisture to form on your roof deck and lower the life expectancy of your roof,” said Moore.
So what's the answer? You have a BPI, Building Performance Institute, certified company come to your house for an energy audit. You've seen it here before on "Your Home." It's called a 'blower door' test.
“It'll actually find the leakage in your house. That way all the time is spent on actually correcting the issues. Basement penetrations and the perimeter of your basement is another great area to spend some time and money on air sealing,” said Moore.
And do some research where you live. There are often state programs to take advantage of that will help cover the cost of making energy efficient upgrades to your house.