The title of today's post sounds a little like a mystery
novel. There is a door that often gets overlooked when
weather-proofing because the doors leading directly outside are what
first come to mind when checking for gaps and air leaks.
The forgotten door is the one between the house and the
garage. This is especially important when the garage is not insulated.
Besides replacing the weather stripping around the door frame, installing a
door sweep helps seal the gap between the bottom of the door and the threshold
to prevent cold air from entering and warm air from escaping, or the reverse in summer months.
So there is no mystery here, just remember when checking for
unwanted airflow between your house and outside, don't forget the door to the
If you have a leaky window, you might as well leave it open
three inches during the cold weather months. A crack as small as 1/16th of an
inch around a window frame can let in as much cold air as leaving the window
open three inches!
Here are a couple of ways to detect air leaks:
At night, shine a
flashlight over the suspected gaps while someone else observes from outside. It
also needs to be dark inside and large cracks will then show up as beams of
light. This method is not the best option for finding small cracks. Shut a door or window
on a piece of paper. If you can pull the paper out without tearing it, you are
windows and doors, here are a few other places to check for air leaks:
According to Energy Star,
if all of the households in Minnesota changedjust oneincandescent light bulb to an Energy
Star qualified bulb, the combined individual efforts could save up to
106 million kilowatt-hours of electricity per year. This is enough energy to
light all the households in St. Paul for nearly 180 days. Based on the average
electrical rate in Minnesota, the amount of energy saved would reduce household
electrical bills by a combined total of $9 million a year. AND, this
simple change would prevent nearly 163 million pounds of greenhouse gas
emissions each year which is the equivalent to removing the annual emissions of
14 thousand cars from Minnesota roadways.
Which of the following will help you save the most energy?
A) Install a low-flow shower head.
B) Use only CFL bulbs.
C) Regulate your thermostat.
D) Buy an Energy Star certified refrigerator.
Scroll down to check your answer...
All of the options listed are good for conserving energy however, heating and cooling your house uses the most energy. When you regulate your temperature settings or install a programmable thermostat, you will see the most savings.
Here's a question for you... What are YOU personally doing in your classroom, your area or your office to save energy? The first five people to email their answer to: firstname.lastname@example.org will receive a fun prize, be sure to include your school or building name. Answers and prize winners will be posted later this month. Thanks for doing your part and being energy smart!
Hope you are enjoying the gorgeous fall weather right now but if there is one thing we know about the changing seasons in Minnesota, we know it is not going to last and winter is coming. Which brings me to the point of today's post...
More than 50 percent of the energy used in a typical American home is for space heating and cooling. Much of that conditioned air escapes through poorly sealed, underinsulated attics. Only 20% of homes built before 1980 are well insulated.
So today's energy insight is make sure you are ready for the coming cold weather months by keeping your home properly insulated and you will SEE energy savings this winter.