When I would visit my Grandmother’s house as a teenager, it always amazed me how she would close her curtains before the sun went down. She was missing out on a beautiful sunset and blocking out all that natural light as she turned on the lights inside. Surely that was going to cost her more money than it saved her.
Now that I am a little older and the proud owner of a mortgage, power and gas bill I get it. These days I do everything I can to trap the sun's natural warmth in my home in winter. This prevents those precious rays of warmth from the sun escaping out the windows and doors so my home stays warm and snugly at night.
“Windows and doors can account for up to 40 per cent of the heat lost from a home. In many instances, more heat passes through windows and doors than through ceilings” - Source Lifestyle: Draught-proof windows, doors for more warmth and comfort
There is nothing worse than sitting on the couch with the family, or laying in bed feeling that cold draught lingering on your skin as it chills you to the bone. Even if you are running the heat pump, it still manages to find those gaps of skin on your ankles and back and form goosebumps.
What are the main sources of draughts around the home?
So, you have closed the curtains, that is step one. Remember heat can escape through the glass on a window. Up through the ceiling and down through the floorboards. Along with through the gaps around windows and doors. It is easy to imagine $5 and $10 bills slipping out these cracks and flying away to the power gods in the sky.
So how do we keep our homes warm & dry and keep our pennies for our winter hot chocolate and marshmallow supply? With the average family power bill in Auckland in 2018 being around $2200 a year *Source - Average Power Bill in New Zealand. It is easy to see how draught-proofing could equate to some serious savings.
Here are the 4 techniques we use when we find draughts and draught proof our customers homes or rentals.
1. Check for gaps around your door frame:
If you can see light shining through a closed door is a really good indicator that cold air is coming into your home. When this happens we will check to see if your door is hung properly and in alignment.
2. Check for gaps around your window:
Your window has friction stays that holds it in place and keeps a tight seal on your window. When these get loose cold air can get in. To test their sturdiness place a business card at the top of the window between the frame and the sash and close the window. The card should stay there and be hard to pull out. If the business card falls out, or is easily pulled out, the friction stays are worn and you’ll need to call us to replace them. In this condition they can be draughty and may leak.
>> See How to check your window for draughts for more...
3. Realign Doors
Sometimes if your door has dropped this can be why your door is not hanging snugly in it’s frame. We will assess the root cause then fix it up with the tools and components from our van.
4. Repair worn down or broken parts on doors or windows.
Worn down parts mean a loose seal, this is normally how air and dampness finds its way into your home. There are a number of gap fillers we use like foam strips, rubbers, seals, strips, springs and spirals. The thickness you need depends on the size of the gap and you may find different doors and windows need different depth products. We have a well equipped van with lots of draught stopping solutions and find we can fix these issues on the spot.
And there you have it our 4 steps to a warm, dry draught proof home.
- Check windows for gaps.
- Check Doors for gaps.
- Check Door Alignment.
- Replace worn or broken parts.