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Find and Seal Air Leaks in Your Home Envelope

Find and Seal Air Leaks in Your Home Envelope

Find and Seal Air Leaks in Your Home Envelope

Your home's envelope is what separates your indoor living space from the outdoor elements. Since the envelope is made up of many different building components, there are lots of places where air can infiltrate. Finding and fixing air leaks is an effective way to curb your energy costs and increase your comfort.Tips for Finding Air LeaksYou can find many leak sources on the exterior by thoroughly inspecting it for obvious cracks, gaps and holes. Be sure to check these leak-prone areas:

  • Around punctures through the shell, such as plumbing lines, outdoor spigots, wiring, exhaust and HVAC vents.

  • At the juncture of two different building materials.

  • Along the foundation where it meets the siding.

  • In exterior corners, and around window and door frames.

Inside in your living areas and attic, you can use a burning stick of incense or a smoke pencil to help locate leaks. Common problem areas include:

  • Attic knee walls and floor penetrations such as recessed lights, plumbing pipes, wiring, the flue or chimney and the access hatch.

  • Exterior wall light switches and electrical outlets.

  • The fireplace damper.

  • Baseboard moldings, and exterior-wall window and door trim.

Tips for Sealing Sources of Air LeaksAir sealing your entire home can be a lengthy process, but you can make the task more manageable by focusing on one problem area at a time. You'll find a variety of fairly inexpensive sealing products available at most building supply stores, including:

  • Weather stripping — Self-adhesive foam weather stripping is available in different widths to suit most needs. It's the best choice for stopping leaks around movable components like doors, window sashes and attic hatches.

  • Caulk — Available for both indoor and outdoor applications, caulk works well for sealing narrow gaps and cracks around window frames and other stationary components.

  • Spray foam — This foam expands to fill holes and gaps wider a 1/4 inch, so it's well suited for sealing leaks around penetrations through the exterior walls or attic floor.

For expert advice about how to find and seal air leaks in the envelope of your Broken Arrow home, contact us today at Air Assurance.Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Norman Pogson/Shutterstock”