Each time your air conditioner turns on, cool air circulates throughout your house, but what if some of it escapes? Small amounts of escaping air are unavoidable. You have to open doors to walk through them, for instance. However, it’s important to prevent unnecessary cool air loss in your Virginia home.
Around Doors and Windows
The casing around doors and windows sometimes warps, especially during the summer. The wood expands and contracts based on temperature and humidity, which can create gaps between the door or window itself and its surround. To prevent this, add weather-stripping in those areas so the seal is tighter.
Weather-stripping only costs a few dollars at the hardware store. It comes in a roll, similar to tape, and you can cut it to meet the desired length. Just measure the height or length of the area you want to seal, cut the stripping to match, and peel off the adhesive backing. Apply it securely to the edges of doors and windows so no gap remains.
Through Narrow Openings
Your home contains several gaps and cracks. You might have holes cut for cable wires, for example, and large cut-outs for switchplates and plumbing. In some cases, the gaps or openings are wider than necessary, which means that cool air escapes more than it should. To prevent this, find all the cracks in your home and apply caulk or silicone to seal them.
If you don’t know where to find these openings, hire an air conditioning expert to find them for you. A professional can advise you about preventing cool air loss, especially in an older home, and provide tips for maintaining the best temperature inside your house without unnecessary energy consumption.
Around Recessed Lights
While recessed lighting adds drama and illumination to your home’s design, it also presents a problem. The installer must cut out a portion of the ceiling to install those lights, the top of which often extends into the attic. This leads to air escaping around the edges of the lights.
To remedy the issue, install airtight baffle in the recessed area. Just remove the light’s housing, shove the baffle into the vacated space, and reinstall the housing. Air won’t be able to escape any longer, and you won’t have to worry about it again.
Through Garage Walls
An attached garage offers convenience but it can also create heat transfer. Since you don’t control the temperature in your garage, heat can penetrate through the wall it shares with the rest of your home and force your air conditioner to work harder. Insulating your garage walls erects a divider between the two spaces.
Additionally, if your attic hatch is located inside your home rather than in the garage, seal it and add insulation to prevent heat gain through it. Special insulation intended for this purpose creates a seal around the top of the hatch so you can still access the attic, but you don’t have to worry about cool air escaping.
From the Fireplace
Your fireplace keeps you warm in the winter, but it might also make you warmer in the summer. Cool air can escape through the flue and chimney. You can hire a professional to conduct a pressure test on your home. This will tell you whether or not your cold air flows up through the fireplace.
Many homeowners install rigid foam insulation in their chimneys during the summer. It creates an air block that prevents air conditioning from escaping. Alternatively, you can close the flue to prevent air loss and seal any cracks around the fireplace that might allow air to flow outside.
Into the Basement
Although new homes in Virginia often lack basements, old homes sometimes feature them. If you have a basement, check the perimeter for signs of air leakage. Openings for pipes, ductwork, cables, and wires often lack sufficient seals, which means air can move freely into and out of your home.
Preventing cool air from escaping your Virginia home protects you against energy loss and discomfort. If your air conditioner isn’t working like it should, visit our website today or give us a call at (888) 474-3391.
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