Common Problems in Whole House Systems
If you have noticed
several of the symptoms
inefficient home, you are not alone. Most
homes, especially those built before the late
1980s, were not built with carefully balanced
and constructed systems in place. Cost
cutting is only partly to blame. The main
issue is that without recent advances in
building science and testing technology, even
the most careful builders would only be guessing
at how well they were constructing a
house. Subtle, almost undetectable
construction imperfections can add up to major
problems in a house's overall
performance. Thus, even a house with
EnergyStar components may suffer from seriously
underperforming systems. Common
imperfections and defects include:
Air leaking into and out of multiple gaps and
crevices in the house's shell.
As much as 30% of heating and cooling air
leaking from the ducts before it ever reaches
the rooms of a house.
Inadequate or improperly installed
insulation. Improperly installed
insulation typically looses more than half of
its potential temperature trapping ability.
Furnaces and air conditioners that are
oversized by 200% to 300% working hard and
frequently cycling on and off in response to
rapid losses of conditioned air. This
causes excess noise and increases equipment
wear and tear.
Inadequate or contaminated ventilation air
that contributes to stuffy or musty air and
possible carbon monoxide poisoning issues.
Unbalanced airflow systems that pull smoke,
fumes, or flames from sources throughout the
house and could contribute to fire or toxicity
Sources of moisture entering the house and
contributing to mold, mildew and dry rot
Dank or rodent infested crawl spaces leading
to poor air quality, lowered
energy efficiency, and a variety of
damage to the house.
Built-in lights and fans that are inefficient
and leak significant quantities of conditioned
air into the attic.