Riley Heating & Air Blog: Posts Tagged ‘insulation’

The Importance of Home Performance Evaluations

Tuesday, July 30th, 2019

Alabama homeowners who would like to improve energy efficiency may not know how to identify effective household energy-saving solutions. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program recommends a whole-house approach to energy conservation. If you have high energy bills, uneven heating and cooling or a lot of dust, your home may benefit from a home performance evaluation. Home performance evaluations look at energy usage in all areas, from insulation to the heating and cooling system.

What Is a Home Performance Evaluation?

The purpose of a home performance evaluation is to examine factors that affect indoor comfort including heat flow, air flow, moisture and indoor air quality. The benefits are many. If there are leaks in the building envelope or inadequate insulation, a heating, ventilation and air conditioning system will not perform properly. Sealing leaks and adding insulation will reduce drafts, regulate air flow, achieve proper moisture control and improve air quality.

A certified contractor uses several tools to identify leaks, evaluate levels of insulation and examine the effectiveness of the HVAC system. A blower-door test identifies leaks around windows and doors, pipes, electrical outlets and other elements of the building envelope. Ductwork and seams will also be examined for leaks. The contractor will evaluate the performance of the entire HVAC system.

You will be presented with a written summary of the findings with recommendations for fixing any problems. Depending on your contractor’s findings, air sealing and upgraded insulating are usually among the first steps suggested to improve energy efficiency. Weather stripping and caulking are simple, inexpensive ways to reduce air leaks. If the building leaks air or has too little insulation, the benefits of an energy-efficient HVAC system are lost.

Selecting a Contractor

Riley Heating and Air Conditioning has more than 40 years of experience providing HVAC service in western Georgia and eastern Alabama. As a member of the Building Performance Institute, our technicians are trained to conduct home performance evaluations and recommend effective ways to improve your indoor environment. For more information about improving energy efficiency in your home or about our general services, contact us at 334-298-1278.

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Button Up Your Furnace to Help Cool Your Home

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

You wouldn’t think of running your furnace in the middle of the summer, but you may not be aware of other elements in your home that can raise your indoor heat index. Now is the perfect time to button up your home against hot and humid weather, so you keep more of the air that you pay to cool indoors. The following tips can pay off big when it comes to enhancing your comfort at home.

Seal Up the Envelope

Any opening in the exterior walls, floors and ceilings that make up your home’s building envelope lets heat inside. Air sealing your home can help keep summer heat at bay:

  • Use household caulk to plug cracks around plumbing and gas fixtures, dryer vents and mail chutes.
  • Seal up larger gaps using a can of spray-foam insulation.
  • Make sure that your attic is adequately insulated and properly ventilated to relieve heat buildup.
  • Apply weatherstripping to drafty windows and doors.

Address Indoor Heat Sources

The last thing you want on a hot summer’s day is to generate additional heat inside your home. When outdoor temperatures rise:

  • Instead of using the oven, use a microwave, slow cooker or outdoor grill.
  • Postpone running the washer and dryer until the cool of the evening.
  • Anything that uses electricity also gives off heat, so keep lights and electronics turned off when not in use.

HVAC Solutions

Scheduling end-of-season furnace maintenance ensures that no energy-wasting leaks and cracks have developed in the system’s combustion or air delivery system. From preventive air conditioner and furnace maintenanceto whole-home energy audits, the skilled HVAC professionals at offer a variety of services that can help lower your cooling costs and improve your comfort.

To find more warm-weather strategies for keeping your home cool and comfortable without raising your utility bills, browse the energy-saving tips offered Riley Heating and Air Conditioning at or call 334-298-1278.

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