Drafts in and of themselves may not actually waste much energy. But, they can make you feel cooler and more uncomfortable.
And that might lead to you adjusting your HVAC more. Finally, that results in a larger electric bill.
What causes drafts? What can you do about them?
Find out below:
1. Obvious Leaks from Windows and Doors
This is the most noticeable cause. Cracks and gaps can often be found around both.
They’re small. But they’re there.
Bad sealing. Poor installation by a contractor. Aging in your home’s structure.
These things all lead to drafts and cost you more money. Interestingly, they are a smaller part of the cause of drafts and leaks.
But, you can easily do the sealing around your doors and windows yourself. Simply use caulk and weatherstripping from your local hardware store.
However, one downfall of this is that you may have to re-caulk and change the weatherstripping every 2-4 years or so.
While cheap, neither is a permanent solution.
2. Hidden/Indirect Leaks
These leaks are bigger and have greater responsibility for the drafts you feel around your home.
But they come with a catch: they’re harder to find.
An indirect leak refers to one that results from a gap between the construction in your home and the outdoors.
For example, you may notice an obvious hole. But you may not be able to see the hidden pathway that connects the hole to a wall cavity or floor joist.
If you find an obvious hole between your home and the outdoors, you may be able to use a can of expandable spray foam to do the seal.
But you may have to repair your joist or the wall cavity entirely too.
3. Poor Insulation
Lack of quality insulation can also be a problem. You see, hot and cold air have different pressures.
So, when your home has a different temperature than the outdoors, like it usually does, that causes airflow.
But, if you have proper insulation in all areas of your home, the air has nowhere to flow. So, you won’t feel any drafts.
A simple thing you can do to minimize air flow is to hang curtains. Heavy curtains help prevent airflow and keep air inside your home where it belongs. They have the added benefit of keeping the sun’s heat out of your home.
If that doesn’t help much, you may have a more serious insulation problem that requires professional attention.
Drafts alone don’t cause you major energy efficiency problems. But the things that cause drafts do.
Fortunately, addressing them can be simple, cost-effective, and great for your bottom line.