You Asked, We Answer: Is a Home Energy Audit Worth It?

December 06, 2022

Did you perform a double take when you checked your last energy bill? Even though high energy bills can be the end result of extreme weather events, consistently high bills can often indicate an inefficient HVAC system or your home is using too much energy because of other means, such as drafty windows or poor insulation.

One of the easiest ways to identify whether your home is using too much energy is by calling a home service professional to carry out a home energy audit, also known as a home energy assessment. Keep reading to find out more about home energy audits, including what they are and their benefits.

What Is a Home Energy Audit

An energy audit is a comprehensive inspection of how much energy your home consumes and whether – and where – your home may be losing or wasting energy. An inspector will review past energy bills while completing an energy audit to determine where energy is being wasted and how much.

The ultimate goal of an energy audit is to help homeowners save money on their energy bills by suggesting energy-efficient improvements, which can include swapping out your existing HVAC system, putting in new insulation, plugging up leaks, or replacing loose windows.

Over the course of the energy assessment, the auditor carries out an inspection of the outside and inside of your home. The auditor completes a blower door test on doorways, windows and fireplaces to find out if there are air leaks in your home. They’ll also inspect your home’s HVAC system, which also includes the ductwork, the water heater, and the insulation in your attic. Exhaustive assessments could also include reviewing your current lighting system.

Benefits of a Home Energy Audit

It can be difficult for the average homeowner to know for sure how efficient their home is versus other similar homes in their community. However, many energy companies often supply information about where your home is ranked when compared with similar homes and whether it’s more efficient, about average, or inefficient compared to your neighbors’ homes. This is a good starting point to determine if you need an energy audit scheduled.

A few of the benefits of a home energy audit include:

Recognizing How Efficient Your Home Is

It’s worthwhile to learn more about how efficient your home is and where you’re using the most energy. For example, if your ducts are leaking, it could result in a large increase in your energy bills and increased wear and tear on your HVAC system because it has to work longer to fully heat or cool your home.

Making Energy-Efficient Improvements

An energy audit can outline where you need to make energy-efficient improvements to cut back on energy and lower utility bills. This can include replacing worn weatherstripping or installing a new energy-efficient furnace.

Enhancing Health and Safety

Allowing air to slip into your home through doors and windows, or because of a lack of insulation can cause extra moisture to build up, which can negatively impact your home’s humidity levels or encourage mold. This can cause health problems, particularly for people suffering from asthma or allergies.

Raising Your Home’s Retail Value

Energy-efficient homes are sought after by homebuyers. You can sell your home sooner or for more money by telling possible buyers that it’s energy efficient.

How to Complete an Energy Audit of Your Home

Although performing an energy audit on your own may not be as detailed as choosing a professional, it’ll offer you a generalized idea of how energy efficient your home is. If you don’t discover any flaws during the DIY test, then you potentially don’t need to call in a professional. Try this step-by-step checklist:

  • Review your HVAC system. Broken ducts can lose as much as 20% of conditioned air, contributing to higher energy bills and increased wear and tear on HVAC equipment. If you notice leaks, use duct tape to close them. If your HVAC equipment is old and inefficient, upgrading to a new system can save you a considerable amount on your energy bills. In some cases, it is better to contact a reputable HVAC company in Pocatello to inspect your system.
  • Watch for signs of air leaks. Air leaks on average can raise monthly energy bills by 10 to 20%. Inside, look for air leaks in areas where there is a draft, such as along the edge of flooring and near baseboards and electrical outlets. Outside, you can inspect for air leaks around the home’s foundation, siding and mortar. Plug, caulk or seal any air leaks to save money.
  • Inspect insulation. If your home is older, it could mean your insulation is too. If you can see the joists, you likely need more insulation.
  • Check the ventilation. Make sure that all of your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are working properly, and look for evidence of rot or moisture.

Contact Vogts Heating & Air for a Professional Energy Audit

If you are interested in professional help figuring out how energy efficient your heating and cooling equipment is, call the HVAC professionals at Vogts Heating & Air today. We’ve proudly serviced the residents of Pocatello with quality home services for a long time. Contact us today to set up an appointment.