DIY – Maintain Your Pipes and Ducts to Save Energy and Money
Who doesn’t like to save money? Energy efficiencies can be created with the proper maintenance of your pips and ducts. Read below to learn some DIY tips on how you can maintain your pipes and ultimately save your self money.
There are many water pipes in your house that are accessible. First locate the accessible pipes, mark them down and get ready to insulate those water pipes. Adding the proper insulation saves energy, prevents freezing during most moderate to medium chills, and reduces condensation when pipes flow through attics and crawlspaces. It’s also cheap failsafe for your pipes – a burst pipe that is insulated wont lose as much water as un wrapped pipe.
Be sure to use the appropriate tape to wrap and hold the insulation in place. If either the insulation or the tape crumbles to the touch, replace it. Simply tear off the old stuff once the insulation is removed, all you have to do is slip a new piece in place.
Climate and temperature of your are an important factor for your pipes energy efficiencies. If you live in an area where temperatures frequently reach below freezing, and you’ve installed pipe heaters (wire or tape), don’t insulate these pipes without first looking into this. The last thing you want is to create a insulation file in your crawlspace.
The main purpose of installing the insulation around pipes and heat ducts is to reduce energy costs while improving the effectiveness of your central heating and cooling system. It also helps prevent unwanted condensation in attics and crawlspaces, thereby reducing the chance for mold, mildew, and the problems associated with them.
Make sure to wrap the insulation around the duct in a corkscrew fashion. Rodents, house movement, and vibration in the heating system can cause the insulation to loosen and fall away from the ducting. Reattaching or adjusting the insulation to cover the ducting is a good thing. You can “stitch” a nail into insulation to hold it together. You do this in the same way that a seamstress uses a sewing pin to hold two pieces of fabric together.
There is a vapor barrier created by a thin layer plastic that surrounds modern insulated ducts and prevents moisture from attacking the insulation and the ducting. Make sure these are in tact and functioning well . If you find small tears, tape over the damaged area. For areas of larger damage, use a piece of plastic as a patch held in place with metal tape. Make sure the tape seals all four sides of the patch.
Those same issues that cause duct damage also create air leaks. Air leaks can result in major heat or cooling loss and can substantially increase your energy bill. Therefore, checking for duct leaks can pay off big time. Because most ducting is covered with insulation, leaks can be hard to find.
But here are a few tips to help you locate any issues:
- Ducting that is crushed or badly bent
- Insulation that has darkened
After you’ve completed the above DIY tips your energy bill should decrease. Decrease changes will depend on your climate and energy use situation. If you don’t notice a savings and are not happy with your energy bill, hire us to come out and we can perform a duct leak test. This is best left to the professionals but we are happy to help.