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Problems we can solve:
Almost every type of home has an envelope problem that HIT Environmental can solve. With an Energy Assessment, we can determine your specific envelope problems. Below are some common problems:
Health – Air contaminants including mold, lead, asbestos & particulates.
Safety – Uncontrolled smoke transfer and combustion safety.
Comfort – Thermal (too cold in the winter, too warm in the summer).
Energy Efficiency – Wasted energy & high energy bills.
Do you feel that the money you spend is going right out the window?
There is a good chance that your energy costs are going out the window... and out the door, through the walls, the ceiling, and the floor as well. There are cracks all over the place. Your doors and windows don't quite meet their frames; there are tiny spaces where the walls almost join the floor, there are open areas around your electrical and plumbing outlets.
These little gaps leak energy. In fact, about 15% of the energy you use for heating and cooling your home goes to conditioning the air that leaks in through the cracks.
As if that weren't enough, leaking air is unfiltered air, bringing in unwanted moisture, pollen, dust, and can significantly increase carbon monoxide levels in your home if you use fuel to heat your air and water. The most common problems found in homes are related to air leakage. When unconditioned air from outside slips into your home, or conditioned air seeps out, you have to pay to heat or cool that extra air replacement. This common problem can be caused by wind "stack effect" (pressure differences in the home) and/or by the mechanical systems in the home. These problems could also be the cause of air quality issues, bringing air in from crawl spaces, the attic or other outdoor sources.
These problems can be solved by air sealing the openings and installing appropriate insulation. Small air gaps (cracks/gaps) may look inconsequential, but they can add up. By air sealing and insulating, you could potentially save up to 30% of your energy consumption. Based upon your potential energy savings, you could reduce 1.3 lbs of green house gas emissions per kilowatt-hour and 12 lbs of green house gas emissions per 100 cubic foot of gas (natural, propane) used, thus helping the environment.
What is Duct Soup?
If you ever think about your heating/cooling ducts at all, it's probably because they're in the way when you move things in the basement, because you keep banging your head on them or they are hidden out-of-sight in a damp & dirty crawl space.
However, ducts are the critical part of making your home energy efficient. The Department of Energy has estimated that 99% of ducts in homes leak. If they leak 20% to 40% of the air they're moving - and that's not unusual - the operating efficiency of your heating and air conditioning equipment is compromised as well.
Are Energy Tight Homes More Susceptible to Problems?
Many people incorrectly assume that energy conserving or "energy tight" homes are more susceptible to indoor air pollution than homes kept deliberately leaky. These people may be surprised to learn that properly designed and maintained energy efficient homes can have a better quality of indoor air than leaky, drafty homes.
This is because in new, energy efficient homes, and in older homes that have had energy conservation features correctly installed, many pollutants are less likely to enter the homes, and those that do can be removed with controlled ventilation.
Remember, in a home that is left intentionally leaky, there is no way to control the air that enters through cracks and other openings. That air flow is affected by wind speed, topography, and vegetation. On the other hand, energy efficient homes use exhaust fans to remove excessive moisture and cooking odors, and a tight building shell ensures toxins in soil gas do not enter the home.
What about problems with indoor air quality?
Many of us have heard the phrase, "tight houses sweat," which refers to the fact that indoor moisture, if not controlled properly, can build up to levels which can cause condensation problems.
We may see this condensation directly (such as when it builds up on windows) or indirectly (such as mold and mildew). Uncontrolled moisture levels in homes can lead to structural problems from rotting studs and joists.
In addition to damaging our homes, uncontrolled moisture levels can adversely affect human health.
HIT Environmental wants to help make your home as comfortable, energy efficient and healthy as possible.