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PEACHTREE Builders,INC

66 State Street, Windsor VT 802-674-6005

Servicing the Upper Valley NH & VT.

BPI Energy Audits | Weatherization

3rd yearbest of the best 2015Consecutive! BPI certified professional logo
Peachtree BPI Certified Services include: Energy audits and weatherization services such as insulation, air sealing, moisture mitigation, and weather proofing.

Weatherization Services

Peachtree Builders Weatherization List:

Health and Safety:

  • Monitor for unsafe conditions (carbon monoxide emissions, poor ventilation, and bad wiring).

Heating System Efficiency and Safety

  • Tune and adjust heating system.
  • Seal heating ducts.

Hot Water Systems:

  • Wrap pipes and water heaters.

Drafts and Air Leaks:

  • Seal off major air leaks. (Caulk around windows, doors, and sills to prevent drafts.)

Mechanical Ventilation:

  • Check bath exhaust fan and ducts for proper function and clean out excessive dust.
  • Check dryer vent and ducts for proper function and clean out excessive dust.
  • Check fireplace damper for proper function and tight seal when closed.

Insulation:

  • Insulate attics, floors and walls. (Mobile home owners should also insulate the ceilings and bellies of the home.)

Windows:

  • Insulate behind window casings, caulk windows.
  • Replace glass or replace windows and install new double-paned, gas-filled windows with reflective properties to reduce UV penetration.
  • Check storm window operation.

Doors:

  • Weather strip and adjust doors.
  • Check to see if door is insulated.
  • Replace old doors. (Replacement doors are sealed for air leaks and insulated to prevent loss of heat.)

Attics:

  • Check for excessive moisture.
  • Check for proper ventilation (above the insulation) and air seal (below the insulation).

Exterior Walls:

  • Check for proper R-values and for missing insulation.
  • Check for excessive moisture.

Basement:

  • Insulate the crawlspace and basement sills.
  • Air seal the sills and air seal the basement from the living area of the house.

Outdoors:

  • Check for a proper and continuous drainage plain around the exterior of the building and away from the building.
  • Check for loose or missing roof, siding, or trim materials.
  • Caulk the gaps around the window, door, and roof trim and on the siding.
  • Check chimney for loose or cracked bricks and mortar.
  • Remove peeling and loose paint and cover with new primer and paint.

Weatherization: Three Steps to a Healthier Home


Weatherizing your home will minimize the movement of air through your house. When air enters the home through small cracks, it invites pests (like mice) and causes drafts that can drain your wallet and chill your bones. Homeowners can apply some small remedies to reduce airflow. Traditional homeowner remedies are not always effective, however. Read more to find out which remedies are worth your while, and which projects require professional help. There are countless weatherization steps you can take. The three most cost-effective involve your doors, windows, and basement sill.

(ONE) Doors: Does Weather Stripping Really Save You Money?

Fact: A 1/8” gap around the perimeter of your door allows the same heat loss as a 6” hole at the center of your door.
When you hear the word “door,” you probably think of the swinging board that you control with the twist of a handle. In reality, a door is a complex unit of moving parts, which includes the door, the jamb, the seals, and moving components (like hinges), all of which are manufactured together so that they function smoothly as a whole. In order to maintain an effective seal against the outdoor elements, this door “system” has to stay perfectly aligned.

If you are losing heat around your door, it is either due to deteriorated weather stripping or to the warping of your door. Neither is particularly easy to fix with hardware store weather stripping.

Weather stripping that does not come from the manufacturer of your door won’t create the same seal as the stripping your door came with. You can use weather stripping from the hardware store for a temporary fix, but it will only provide a buffer against the elements. It won’t bring back the door’s original perfect seal.  
If your door is warped, weather stripping will provide even less protection. You are better off replacing the door, which will cost more initially, but will save you money on your heating bill as time passes.

To determine your most economical move, it is best to bring in a professional builder to assess the condition of your door and suggest a course of action.

(TWO) Windows: Magnetize Your Home’s Personality
You know that your windows are a weak spot in your home’s defense against winter, but what are you going to do about it? Here are a few ideas that might help you this winter:
Some people use shrinking plastic to fortify their windows for winter, but plastic shields often break down and detach before the cold weather has passed. If you’re looking for an affordable and effective alternative, you might try magnetic storm windows. This ingenious product uses magnetic strips, which you attach to your window casing, to hold the storm window in place.  These windows are easy to store and to use, and will create an effective barrier against winter drafts and heat loss.

A lesser-known problem with windows is the trim. Many homes (even newer homes) have a void behind the window trim. Regardless of how well you seal your windows, you will lose heat through this void if you do not insulate it. Blowing insulation in to fill the void is the best way to insulate your window trim, and can be done simply by removing the sash (the part of your window that moves up and down over the track), and drilling holes, into the trim, where insulation can be blown in. When the sash is replaced, the holes disappear, so you need not worry about ruining the appearance of your window.

(THREE) Basement Sill: Fiberglass Does NOT Create a Seal
The basement sill is the area where the wooden portion of your home meets the concrete portion of your basement or foundation. This can be an extraordinarily leaky spot when it’s not insulated or if it is insulated poorly.

When the wind blows against your house in winter, it blows right through hundreds of tiny cracks in your basement sill, creating a draft of air across your basement and out through the other side.  If you own an older home, it’s likely that your basement is insulated with fiberglass, which allows air flow and does not form an adequate seal.

To button up this part of the home, you will want to pull out any fiberglass or other inefficient insulation. Vacuum the area, so that you are working with clean surfaces, then spray foam along the sill. This part of the process should be done thoroughly. Spray the foam over the wood, following the sill down onto the cement at the top of the foundation. Another option is to place rigid foam insulation (for example, blue board) in the sill box and foam around the edges to hold it in place.

Health Checkup: Does Your Home Need a Health Upgrade?
If your home isn’t healthy, chances are you are suffering from discomfort or health issues yourself. A healthy home is free of toxins and maintains adequate air flow without excessive heat loss.  Just like you would take your children to the doctor’s office for an annual checkup, it’s wise to have a regular home health checkup.

The initial testing normally takes about half a day. It is like an energy audit, requiring the use of a temporary blower door, which Peachtree Builders installs in the frame of your existing door. The blower door is equipped with a large fan that forces air to move through your house, creating measurable pressure and revealing the boundaries of your home envelope. With that information, Peachtree Builders can determine the scope of the work that will need to be done to properly seal your home.

With a solid understanding of your home’s health issues, a Peachtree Builders representative can talk to you about which remedies will be most cost effective. If you ask Peachtree Builders to fix your home health issues, the test is free.


            
 
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