The Fifth Fuel uses tests, not guesswork, to pinpoint your home’s energy efficiency issues with quantifiable information. This allows us to get at the root of energy efficiency issues through a home energy audit, and design effective solutions for Northern Virginia and Metro Maryland homeowners.
The blower door test is a home leak detector that reveals leaks using a special fan. This is the industry-standard way to determine the overall airtightness of the building envelope. For homes with considerable air leaks, we recommend air sealing and sometimes installing insulation in the home for greater energy savings, indoor air quality, and comfort. Once a home has been air sealed to prevent the infiltration of outside air and the exfiltration of conditioned air, the blower door test can be performed again to ensure the energy efficiency work was effective.
Air Leaks Hinder Home Performance & Efficiency
According to ENERGY STAR, most U.S. homes have significant air leaks. This is especially true in Northern Virginia and Metro Maryland, where we have many older and historic homes. All the leaks, cracks, and gaps in the average home are equal to leaving a window open 365 days a year. Just imagine how much money homeowners can save on heating and cooling bills by sealing up these gaps and cracks!
Conducting a Blower Door Test
Our testing equipment consists of a frame and a flexible panel that is placed in the exterior doorway of a home. A variable speed fan is used to draw the air out of the home, creating a low pressure inside. This causes air to be pulled in through cracks and gaps in the house. A pressure gauge is used to take measurements, assessing the overall airtightness of the home.
Preparing for a Blower Door Test
The test typically takes an hour, or perhaps longer for a larger or more complicated home. For homes heated with wood, ensure that the fire is completely out prior to conducting a blower door test. All windows and doors will need to be closed for the test and the heating or cooling system turned off. The energy conservation experts at The Fifth Fuel may need to access many parts of the home, including the crawlspace or basement and attic.
The Fifth Fuel: Your Energy Efficiency Experts
The Fifth Fuel is a locally-owned and operated company, with 30 years of home energy efficiency experience through our parent company. We are dedicated in serving Northern Virginia and Metro Maryland homeowners to lower energy bills and increase home comfort.