Perform a DIY Home Energy Audit to Save Money

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The Costs

Heating costs will rise for 116 million Americans this winter, according to EIA (Energy Information Administration) statistics. Homes heating with oil, the most expensive fuel, will spend $2,046 on average, while homes heating with propane, the least expensive, will pay $679. You can slash these yearly costs with an energy audit, and you don’t need to pay a professional to perform one. A DIY home energy audit finds the biggest savings right away, and its not just about sealing leaks.

Inspect and repair the caulking seal around each window of your houseEnergy Consumption Sources and Fixes

The first step is to figure out where you spend your money. Check your energy bills and tally up your costs to see what you spend on electricity. It might not be immediately apparent where you are losing money, but this will give you a starting point.

Heating and cooling usually accounts for 45 percent of energy used in your home, according to EIA.gov. Many homes, especially older structures, lose heat through cracks or out-dated furnaces. The EIA found old homes consume as much heat as newer homes, even though new homes are 30% bigger.

If you are living in a colder climate, check your house for obvious leaks. Any part of your home where two different materials meet like attics, windows, skylights and doors are leak prone. Ducts are also very susceptible to leaks. Check for noticeable leaks in these areas first. Look for daylight coming through cracks. To spot inconspicuous leaks, hold a lit candle near cracks. If the flame flutters, there is a leak.

Seal doors and windows with weatherstripping, and fix larger leaks and gaps with expanding foam. On ducts, use duct tape.

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Tyler Golberg

Tyler is the founder of Home Maintenance Tracker and a writer for HomeSpot HQ, an easy to use tool for managing maintence and projects for every house.