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DIY Home Energy Audit Checklist

If you’re not ready to hire a professional to conduct an energy audit, but want to learn about your home’s energy efficiency to make changes for the better, you are in the right place.  Below you will find a comprehensive checklist to complete your own free home energy audit.  (Expect it to take you about half a day to complete) Most people find that with this DIY checklist they can make a few small improvements and save big on their energy bill each month.

How to use this guide: Print this checklist and bring it with you as you conduct the audit. Mark a description of what you found and note any concerns.

Before You Begin: Materials:

  • Ladder
  • Eye Goggles
  • Dust Mask
  • Gloves
  • Pen/Pencil and Paper for Notes
  • Calculator
  • Tape Measure
  • Screwdriver
  • Wooden chopstick or plastic knitting needle to probe insulation
  • Candle or Incense stick to detect air leaks
  • Flashlight

Step One: Air Leaks: Go to each room in the house and areas described below.  Once potential problem areas are identified, use your lit incense stick or candle to observe air movement in or out. Most air leaks can be solved with simple solutions. Weatherstrips around your windows or doors, caulk between window gaps, and spray foam in the basement/attic/crawl space can solve most of your problems.

□   Front Door

□   Back Door

□   Garage Door

□   Other Doors

□   Chimney

□   Living Room Windows

□   Kitchen Windows

□   Dining Room Windows

□   Bedroom Windows

□   Bathroom Windows

□   Other Room Windows:

□   Foundation Leaks

□   Check all Vents first Floor

□   Check all Vents second Floor

Step Two: Insulation: Insulation Keeps heat in during the winter and out during the summer. Go to the walls, attic and basement (the perimeter of your house) and note the type of insulation and the R-value. The higher the number, the more effective the R-Value. To check the walls in your living spaces, remove your outlet switch covers (turn off the electricity via fuse box first, of course). Windows have a maximum R-value of 3 or 4. If your windows are single-pane they probably have an R-value of 1 and are a big source of heat loss. While replacing your windows can make a big difference in your energy bill, it is also expensive. Consider insulated shades or plastic storm windows as a cheaper alternative.

□   Attic Floor

□   Attic Hatch

□   Basement Walls (your basement walls will only be insulated if you have a heated basement; if your basement is not heating, the ceiling should be insulated)

□   Hot water Pipes

□   Furnace Ducts

□   Exterior Wall 1

□   Exterior Wall 2

□   Exterior Wall 3

□   Exterior Wall 4

□   Living Room Windows

□   Kitchen Windows

□   Dining Room Windows

□   Bedroom Windows

□   Bathroom Windows

□   Other Room Windows:

Step Three: Furnace: Poorly insulated furnaces and un-sealed ducts can waste up to 50% of the heat produced!

□   Check Furnace Filters

□   Check Insulation

□   Duct sealant

Step Four: Water Heater: Water heaters account for about 15-30% of your home energy use, so it’s important to make sure you are using that energy efficiently. Use a meat thermometer to check that the water temperature is between 120 and 130 degrees.

□   Hot water pipes insulated

□   First 5 feet of cold water pipes insulated.