Common Home Issues
Many homes of the San Francisco Bay Area were built during earlier eras when we didn’t have such a comprehensive understanding of building science and its implications. As a result most older homes are very energy inefficient compared to homes that have been built or retrofitted taking into account best practices of building science.
Think about what cars were like 1960 or 1920. How much greater is the performance of cars today than decades ago? Most of us would not even think about using a stock car from the 1920s for regular transportation and expect it to perform as effectively as a new car. Yet many homes in the San Francisco area are decades or even a century old. These homes were not built with the building science knowledge that we have today. As a result their performance lags far behind today’s high performance homes. Fortunately by implementing measures recommended by advanced building science an inefficient home can be transformed into a high performance home. Inefficient homes waste energy through leaky duct systems, lack of insulation, an unsealed building envelope, single pane windows and more issues that can be identified through our diagnostic building science testing.
Common problems found in most older homes include:
- Holes and leaks in ducts
- Inadequate Insulation
- Drafts and air leaks
- Unsealed crawlspace
- Dangerous Home Problems
Inefficient heating and cooling equipment carries potential health risks. California recently passed a law stating that all homes now need carbon monoxide detectors. This is because carbon monoxide leaks and CO poisoning is more common than most people think. According to the California EPA Air Resources Board, 30-40 people die every year in California due to carbon monoxide poisoning. The most common source of carbon monoxide emissions in home is the gas burning heating and cooling systems and appliances. One of the most common sources of unsafe levels of carbon monoxide emissions is older furnaces.
As part of the Advanced Home Energy energy assessment process we check the furnace for common issues that can cause carbon monoxide leaks. We also check the gas burning appliances to ensure those are not leaking carbon monoxide either.