window frame - energy efficiency
If you have air leaks in your home, you could be spending much more in heating and cooling costs than is necessary. The best way to find air leaks is to hire a technician who can perform an energy assessment. However, if you’d prefer to make this a DIY project, you can find obvious air leaks on your own.

1. On the outside of your home, check out all areas where different building materials meet and look for obvious gaps or cracks in caulking or weather stripping. These areas include where the foundation meets the bottom of your exterior siding material; where your siding material and your chimney meet; exterior corners of your home; and around outdoor water faucets.

2. On the inside of your home, check for obvious gaps or cracks in caulking or weather stripping around baseboards, door frames, window frames, vents and fans, electrical outlets and phone jacks, and anyplace else that gaps might exist.

3. If you see daylight around doors or windows, it’s obvious that air leaks will occur there. You should also make sure that doors and windows form a tight seal when closed. One good way to check for a tight seal is to close the door or window on top of a piece of paper. If a tight seal exists, you won’t be able to remove the paper without tearing it.

4. With another person positioned outside your home at night, shine a flashlight from the interior of your house toward the outside. This is a good way to detect any obvious cracks since the person outside will be able to see the beam of the flashlight through cracks if they exist.

For more energy efficiency tips, visit http://energy.gov/energysaver/articles/detecting-air-leaks

Window trims (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12394349@N06/3686902626/) / Bryn Pinzgauer (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12394349@N06/) / CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)