Have you ever had a blower door test performed in your home, or do you wonder what it is and why it’s a good idea? If you want your home to be more comfortable and energy efficient, you may want to learn more about blower door tests and how they help determine how “airtight” your home is. Our Austin insulation professionals will explain how it works and why it matters below.
Often done during an energy audit, blower door tests can help pinpoint areas in your home where air leaks may be present. Air leaks compromise your comfort, and often result in higher energy costs as your HVAC system works overtime to heat or cool your home depending on the season. Air leaks can also contribute to condensation or moisture, which can cause structure damage.
Having a blower door test performed not only helps you understand the level of mechanical ventilation necessary to enjoy good indoor air quality inside your home, it can also reveal whether it would be beneficial to add insulation. These tests are often performed following insulation installation to gauge its effectiveness.
How does a blower door test work?
A powerful, variable-speed fan is mounted onto an exterior door frame, pulling the indoor air out. Outdoor air pressure is higher than indoor air pressure, so if there are existing air leaks in your home, it is pulled inside through cracks or openings that are not properly sealed.
Some of the tools used when conducting blower door tests include hoses, a pressure gauge, and airflow manometer. These tools are used to measure airflow, and the professional conducting the test may use a thermal image camera or smoke pencil to detect where air leaks are present.
Blower door testing at its most basic measures the air exchange inside your home. When you have air leaks, your conditioned (heated or cooled) air is escaping to the outdoors through any cracks, gaps, or holes, while outdoor air makes its way inside. You can see how this could not only impact your family’s comfort, but result in higher energy costs.
Spray foam insulation is highly effective for sealing air leaks if it is determined they exist in your home. To learn more about blower door testing or what can be done to make your home more air tight, give our Austin spray foam insulation experts a call today.