If you’re concerned about heat loss and insulation, you may at some point have considered air sealing as an option for your home. While there are many ways to go in terms of insulation one thing is for sure, you absolutely need it to ensure your space is not only comfortable but liveable. If you’re wondering what air-sealing is and if you should implement it in your home, we’ve compiled and addressed a few misconceptions about air-sealing.
At St. Louis Insulation, we’re a family-owned insulation and energy efficiency contractor specializing in upgrading insulation, high-performance heat flow, and air management systems in residential homes. Our team at St. Louis Insulation is dedicated to all things insulation, and we know that insulation processes are not one size fits all. Not all homes will require the same type of insulation services, and we tailor our approach to the needs of you and your home.
Now without further ado, let's dispel some common misconceptions about air sealing your home and dive further into energy complete air sealing systems.
What is air sealing, and what is an energy complete air sealing system?
Did you know that air infiltration is the number one cause of energy loss in American homes? In fact, conditioned air seeps through cracks and crevices in your floors, ceilings, and walls and escapes to the outside of your home. This can cause your heating and cooling system to run more frequently which in turn increases your energy bills.
The idea behind air sealing your home is to fill those gaps and protrusions with expanding foam insulation that will slow down any air leakage and trap the conditioned air inside your living space where it belongs. Essentially, air sealing reduces drafts and heat loss by eliminating air leaks in homes around chimneys, plumbing penetrations, and recessed lights. You can use a variety of materials, including caulk, spray foam, metal flashing, weather stripping, and rigid foam to air seal a home.
Due to air pressure, there is a natural flow of air that comes up through the basement, goes through the living space and exits out of the attic. By air sealing your home (espicailly the basement and attic) you can prevent warm air escaping in the winter and cold air escaping in the summer. Overall, good insulation is key to maintaining a comfortable home.
Now, lets answer some questions about energy complete air sealing systems and address major concerns.
Are energy complete air sealing systems good for the environment?
The short answer to this question is, yes! By air sealing your home you avoid major heat loss. You can trap in your warm air in the winter and cool air in the summer making you less reliant on your heating and cooling systems. This is good for your wallet, yes, but it’s also great for the environment. By utilizing a strong insulation system, you avoid wasting needless energy on heating and cooling your home. With a reliable energy complete air sealing system, you save money and are kinder to the planet.
Will my home feel stale without air flow?
Natural airflow in a home is essential. It helps prevent the buildup of mold and mildew throughout the house and keeps things feeling fresh. Additionally, mechanical airflow (like the vent from your furnace) prevents unwanted and sometimes even dangerous air from remaining trapped in your house and keeps you and your family breathing clean air. So, yes, air flow is important.
However, the trouble is that many houses—especially older ones—have way too much air flow going on. Gaps and cracks in your foundation, attic, and walls create small pathways for air to escape through and you lose all your heat. Energy complete air sealing systems don’t eliminate airflow all together, rather ensure there isn’t excess airflow and keep your home a comfortable temperature.