Willoughby Heating Question: What is Blower Door Testing?

It is frustrating to pay money to operate your Willoughby heating and cooling system only to receive an underwhelming performance. The problem, though, may not lie with your heating and air conditioning systems. Your home itself may not be well sealed, allowing the air that you’ve paid to heat or cool to escape through cracks in your home’s envelope or window and door frames. Air stripping doors and shrink wrapping windows can help reduce the amount of energy wasted in your home, but for harder to find leaks a blower door test may be the best identification option. It can help you pinpoint leaks in your home envelope and see exactly where repairs are needed to boost efficiency and reduce energy costs.

To perform this test, a your Willoughby heating contractor will install the blower door, which is a powerful fan, in the frame of an external door in your home. This fan pulls air out of your house, which in turn lowers indoor air pressure. This means that the air pressure outside is higher, and that air will naturally try to force its way into your home. The points at which it is able to do this are leaky spots that can allow energy to escape your home. This test gauges the air infiltration rate of your home.

There are calibrated and uncalibrated blower doors that can be used when testing your home. While an uncalibrated blower door can detect leaks in your home, it will not be able to provide the data you need to know just how much air is escaping or how tightly sealed your home really is. The gauges on a calibrated blower door allow this data to be determined and considered when air-sealing your home.

Before you have a blower door test performed you must do a few things to prepare your home. All interior doors should be opened, and windows must be closed. Your thermostats for heaters and water heaters should be lowered, and fireplace dampers, doors and any air intakes should be closed. Because air pressure in your home is going to be adjusted during the test you may want to cover any ashes in your fireplace or wood stove with damp newspapers or towels to avoid a mess.

Once you have the information from your blower door test you’ll know everything you need to in order to heat your home more efficiently. If you’re interested in scheduling a blower door test or have any further questions about its performance or operation, call the energy efficiency experts at Apple Heating & Cooling. We have the answers you need to make the best decision for your home and energy efficiency.

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