2 min read – this article details easy DIY draughtproofing jobs that can be done around the home to reduce energy use.
Energy costs for Australian households is set to soar in 2020. The isolation restrictions have meant that people are in their homes 24/7.
We are working from home, learning from home, socialising from home and entertaining ourselves from home. This means we are running devices constantly. From Zoom meetings to Netflix and everything in between. Some of us are even dusting off dusting of the kitchen appliances and learning the fundamentals of baking!
And let’s not forget the heating bills as we settle into winter. Some households are running their heater all day long to be comfortable at home.
While it’s a very difficult time to curb our energy use, there are a few things that can be done around the house to assist our efforts. What’s more, reducing the costs associated with our energy use also helps the environment!
Reduce energy use and increase the comfort of your home
One of the upsides to staying at home is that we have more time to more around the house. We’ve listed 5 DIY tasks that help reduce household energy consumption, by sealing off the draughts in your home.
According to the Australian Governments passive homes guide “Sealing your home against air leakage is one of the simplest upgrades you can undertake to increase your comfort while reducing your energy bills and carbon emissions by up to 25%”
Below are some of the things you can do to draught-proof your home
1. Seal your windows and door frames
Caulking your windows, doors and any gaps in between walls, ceilings and floor crevices with Silicon will prevent warm air from leaking out. Lighting a candle can help you detect any leaks around the windows and exterior. If the flame dances around, it means there is airflow, which case you have a leak. Selleys have developed an easy to follow guide on how to do this.
2. Affix draught stoppers to windows and doors
There is a huge range of products when it comes to draught-proofing your windows & doors. From self- adhesive foam strips , to retractable draught seals at the bottom of hinged doors. There are also overlapping brush seals that also help to reduce the dust and dirt that enters the house. Your choice will depend on the style and suitability of your windows and doors.
3. Seal exhaust fans
Exhaust fans are important for extracting heat and moisture from our homes. However, they can also be a source of warm air escaping in winter if they are not self-closing. While many newer fans automatic shutters that close when they are not in use, older fans may not. If you have an older style exhaust fan, then you might consider purchasing a cover (also called a backdraft damper).
4. Install balloons in open chimneys
Everyone loves sitting by an open fire in winter, with a good book, accompanied by a hot drink. Or perhaps a plate of cheeses and red wine in hand…mmmmm… Open fireplaces are by design supposed to extract air up through the chimney. So, when they are not in use, they become a huge source of where air escapes. This is certainly not ideal in summer when you are trying to keep the cool air in!
Installing a chimney balloon or draught stopper stops the air from travelling up and down the chimney. They sit at the throat of the chimney, making them an easy DIY job. Make sure you measure to check the measurements of your chimney when choosing the right balloon as a tight seal is required.
5. Install Underfloor Insulation
Did you know that a home without underfloor insulation can lose up to 20% of heat in winter, and, also gain up to 20% heat in summer through your floors alone?
Thankfully, it is possible to retrofit underfloor insulation into existing homes. EXPOL Underfloor insulation has been engineered to fit snugly in-between the floor joists of suspended timber floors. It comes in a range of sizes so that you can be sure of the perfect fit. When choosing an underfloor insulation material, it is important that all gaps in between the joists are sealed, and that it does not sag over time. EXPOL panels are rigid and will not sag or require replacement in the years to come. For more information about the EXPOL range, please see our products page.
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The EXPOL Team