How to Do a DIY Energy Audit

  • By Jeremy Thompson
  • 01 Feb, 2015
Our last blog told you how to stay green, while also staying warm this winter. As you look at your heating bills for the last few weeks when we experienced some extra chilly weather, you may be contemplating all the options you have to increase your home’s efficiency. The cost of heating has some potential to […] The post How to Do a DIY Energy Audit appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
You can call in an energy specialist to conduct an energy audit, but much of it you can perform on your own, at least as an initial evaluation. Once you’ve conducted your own audit, you’ll be more prepared to talk to a professional so you can ensure your home has a thorough audit.
  • Pinpoint some areas where energy may be wasted. Walk through your home and make a list of problems. Record your findings to refer to later, or to share with an energy auditor. Use a simple pen and notebook or type in your notes on a tablet or smartphone. Some local utilities offer a DIY energy audit guide you can use for help. Here’s one from the City of Seattle .
  • Evaluate the condition of your furnace. Do you hire a professional to clean and service your furnace once a year? Do you change the filters on a regular schedule, about once a month to once every three months? If your furnace is over 15 years old, you may want to replace it with a more energy-efficient one. If it’s newer, but you haven’t had it serviced in some time, make sure to include the service as part of your audit.
  • Check all windows, doors and other areas for air leaks, including around baseboards, outlets and between the wall and ceiling. Check if windows and doors close smoothly and lock securely. There should be no drafts around windows and doors, and the weatherstripping around them should appear undamaged.
  • Inspect your attic insulation. The Department of Energy offers a guide to help you understand how to inspect it, check its depth and determine the R-value.
  • Consider energy-saving replacements. For cheap changes replace your shower heads with low-flow heads and replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs. If you have some money in your home improvement budget, replace your old appliances with Energy Star appliances.
Next Steps
Photo Credit,  Nils Vik

J. Thompson Builders Blog

By Jeremy Thompson 01 Aug, 2017
Your home should work for you, your family and the way you live. Sometimes a new custom home isn’t the answer yet. When you need to maximize the space in your current home, find clever ways to make your space more usable by maximizing storage in unique ways. Platforms add additional space and a new […] The post Clever Remodeling Ideas to Maximize Storage Space appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 15 Jul, 2017
The internet puts an incredible amount of information at your fingertips. Why would you not take advantage of it to get home remodeling advice? Often it isn’t created by experts in the field. Here are 3 remodeling myths you may have read or heard about and the truth you need to know to understand how […] The post 3 Remodeling Myths and Tips appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 01 Jul, 2017
With more and more people working from home or taking at least the occasional “work from home” day, the home office has become an essential part of a home plan. Even if you don’t work from home ever, the home office is still a great area to work on creative projects, store important files, or […] The post Designing a Home Office: Increasing Productivity, Inspiring Creativity appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 15 Jun, 2017
We’ve offered you lots of advice over the years about building a custom home. Here is a condensed version of some of the most important tips to follow. Get on the fast track to planning your new custom home! 7 Tips for Building a Custom Home Pay attention to your subdivision covenants. Yes, these are […] The post Building a Custom Home: 7 Quick Tips appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 01 Jun, 2017
Whether building a house or undertaking a remodel you have the opportunity to design your house to suit your tastes and needs. There are many flooring options available, each with unique characteristics and design. Since flooring is a long-lasting part of the house it is important to choose the right floor for each room that […] The post 5 High-Quality Flooring Options Available for Your Home appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 15 May, 2017
Building a new home is an exciting time, filled with anticipation and satisfaction as you watch your vision come to life. However, it can also be a little overwhelming when you’re unfamiliar with some of the technical terms. To help remedy this we’ve defined a few of the custom home building terms you may hear […] The post 5 Key Terms to Understand in Custom Home Building appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 01 May, 2017
Whether you’ve just unpacked your first box or you’ve been living in your house for years, chances are there’s something about your home you’ve desired improving. However, before beginning a project there are a few key home remodeling terms you should become familiar with. Understanding these terms will help you navigate conversations with your remodeling […] The post 6 Key Home Remodeling Terms to Understand Before Beginning a Project appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 15 Apr, 2017
When it comes to home improvements, most of us are always looking for new, innovative ways to make changes to our homes. Whether you want to remodel your kitchen or just put shelves in your garage to store your tools, there are a wealth of home remodeling ideas to explore. Thankfully, there is a range […] The post 5 Home Remodeling Blogs That Will Inspire You appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 01 Apr, 2017
Few understand the custom home building process until they’ve experienced it themselves, and even those who have often don’t understand the aspects they haven’t experienced (e.g. if you haven’t built a custom home in a subdivision you may not understand how lot covenants work). Six key facts are important to understand when building a custom […] The post 6 Key Facts to Understand About Building a Custom Home appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
By Jeremy Thompson 15 Mar, 2017
One of the more frustrating and confusing tasks when financing the building of your custom home or the remodel of an existing home is finding the right lender. Do you go with a broker, or a credit union, or a small hometown bank, or a large banking institution? How do you know they will give […] The post Home Building and Remodeling: Finding the Right Lender appeared first on J. Thompson Builders.
More Posts
Share by: