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Another freezing Fairfax winter is upon us, so of course, your energy bills are likely on the rise. Then again, they get pretty high in the summer as well. How can you make your house more energy efficient and keep your energy bills low all year round? Let’s start with your attic.

Insulation

Hot air rises. So without proper insulation, the heat from your furnace will travel straight up into your attic, wasting energy and still leaving your home cold. However, insulation slows the flow of heat, keeping it in the house longer. Then, in summer, insulation helps to keep the heat out of your home, so you can stay cool.

Even if you do have insulation in your attic, you may not have enough. Talk to your HVAC contractor to help you insulate your attic properly and improve energy efficiency for your whole house.

Ventilation

Attic ventilation is incredibly important in both summer and winter. When it’s warm and humid, attic ventilation helps reduce moisture that would otherwise lead to mold and mildew problems. In below freezing temperatures, ridge and soffit vents help prevent ice dams: a buildup of ice in your gutters that can weigh them down and ultimately cause them to break. Attic ventilation is essential to the overall health and quality of your home, which makes it an important factor in promoting energy efficiency.

Air sealing

Even more important than ventilating your attic, though, is sealing it. Insulation may keep the heat where it belongs, but if the air itself is leaking out of your home and into the attic, you’re still wasting energy.

Call an HVAC professional to help you find cracks, holes, gaps, and other places where air might leak in, and seal them with expanding foam sealant. You’ll also want to use metal tape to seal up the spaces around windows and the attic hatchway. Finally, seal any leaks in the ductwork in your attic, to make sure your HVAC system’s air reaches your home.

For more help improving your home’s energy efficiency, contact us at Brennan’s Heating & Air.

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