Cold drafts everywhere...

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  #1  
Old 12-08-14, 03:30 PM
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Cold drafts everywhere...

So winter is here and I'm noticing drafts everywhere in my house. Only been here since June and now that the 20 degree weather is here the drafts are a lot more noticeable. I did some research on house blower door tests and wanted to get your opinion.

What should I be doing to find/isolate these drafts and then fix them? TIA
 
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Old 12-08-14, 04:55 PM
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Hi spunky,
Below is a link on air sealing to help you find and fix cold drafts. The larger leaks are of course more important than the smaller leaks, but smaller leaks are easy to seal still worth the effort.

If before and after leakage numbers are needed to qualify for incentive money, then definitely start with the before blower door test. If no incentive money is involved then the link below will catch the majority of leaks and a simple exhaust fan or two along with all of this cold weather will catch some of the hard to find ones. As you mentioned, as it gets cold the leaks become more noticeable. A home owner can even rent an infrared camera to improve the hunting.

Tell us more about your house, style, age, and heating system and we can get more specific.

Bud
http://www.efficiencyvermont.com/ste...ide_062507.pdf
 
  #3  
Old 12-09-14, 06:06 AM
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My home was built in the early 50s and is a cape style house. I have one pipe steam in the house which ive trouble shooted for the past month and have finally got it working quietly and pretty efficiently as opposed to when i first moved in.

A bulk of the infiltration im feeling is coming from the second floor Front facade of the house which is still the original wood paneling. The back of the house had renovations done which lifted the roof to less of slope to create more room on the second floor rear. In doing this renovation the previous owner lost the attic space since the ceilings on the 2nd floor are pretty much full height to the roof creating an extra bedroom and a bigger bath.

Now back to my bedroom which i feel has the most infiltration in the whole house. So i did some snooping around and found that there is a 24"x24" access door to the front portion of the house/cape that can be classified as some attic space. I can see the joints as well as the existing insulation there. A TON of cold air is coming through this space, and this is exactly where the draft is coming from. i will take some pictures and upload them tonight to further get some opinions on what to do. The temperatures in my bedroom on the second floor are ridiculously cold though. like in the mid to upper 50s even with the thermostat set to 70. The radiators get hot but the cold air coming from the front of the house is just too much for the radiator to warm the space.
 
  #4  
Old 12-09-14, 06:18 AM
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Old and a cape are both a challenge. I live in a cape undergoing (very slowly) a deep energy retrofit. But faults I have uncovered have been many. The good news is that everything I fix should add to the improvement.

I'll watch for those pictures.

Bud
 
  #5  
Old 12-09-14, 09:56 PM
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Not the greatest pics cause of the flash. But this little access door is in my wife's closet. It use to have a mini fridge in it. You can see the insulation behind it and the roof. Name:  image.jpg
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  #6  
Old 12-10-14, 04:28 AM
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Maybe it is the lack of a flash, but the wood in there looks very dark, an indication of a condensation issue and access doors like that often leak air.

I'll add a link on insulating kneewalls in capes.

If your basement is open and unfinished, then air seal all penetrations through that ceiling. Also insulate and air seal the entire rim joist.

Built in the 50's it was insulated for energy costs back then. Lots of work to do.

Best,
Bud

Two Ways to Insulate Attic Kneewalls - Fine Homebuilding Article
 
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