Homes That Perform!

Steps To Energy Efficiency: Caulking, Sealing, and Weatherization

Posted by Brett Higby on Mon, Mar 18, 2013 @ 05:11 PM

Existing air leaks and air sealing problem spots are often overlooked. Mentioned on the list of recommendations in the Home Performance Analysis report is "weatherization."

seal the attic spaceThese are relatively easy improvements to reduce air leakage throughout your home. Common steps include:

  1. Seal off any large gaps or holes preferably using polyurethane spray-foam insulation. You would be surprised how many are typically discovered.
  2. Seal off any and all cracks throughout your home using a quality weatherization contractor. Spray foam insulation contractors fulfill this position perfectly.
  3. Seal gaps and holes between the inside conditioned space and the outside environment,
  4. It should be installed without gaps or large excesses,
  5. It should be installed carefully around sliding glass doors and vinyl windows,
  6. It should produce air leakage rates below 0.5 air-changes per hour when measured with a blower door test.

The following steps should be followed in the installation of insulation to ensure energy-efficiency and comfort:

  1. Seal all floor penetrations (any and all crack or gaps).
  2. Seal all exterior wall penetrations.
  • Example: plumbing, electrical boxes and outlets, gas lines

Seal large gaps around windows between house framing and window frame: use special care on large sliding-glass doors and vinyl-framed windows: do not use expansive foam on these.

Note: It is critically important to have an experienced applicator install your caulking and sealing. They need to apply it with special care to seal all joints without excess sealant. Excess is wasted and must be removed before installing drywall. Care must be exercised during removal of excess sealant after hardening to avoid damage or removal of the required sealant.

Seal all roof, attic and ceiling penetrations.

  • Example openings: plumbing, electrical, cable, security, attic access points

Weather-strip all operable openings to the exterior; including doors and attic access holes.

Seal the HVAC/Plumbing closet inside your conditioned space Raised floors

  1. Seal around tub and shower drains Windows

Low-E windows must be certified by the manufacturer to limit air leakage to less than 0.37 cfm per operable foot of sash crack.

Windows should be installed to avoid both air leakage and water penetration. Fixing old windows and adding insulation in places where it was inadvertently left out. Not only will weatherization save you money, it will make your house a lot more comfortable by reducing drafts.

Steps like these are offered to help you improve the indoor air enviroment of your home. As indoor air experts, we are available to offer suggections and advice to make your home world a better one.

Tags: Air Sealing, Indoor Air, Energy Efficiency, Air Leaks