There are a lot of different ways to cut down on the cost of heating, and many of them are fairly subtle. For example, insulating a home’s crawlspace may seem like a fairly small change, but it can have a big impact on a home’s energy efficiency. There are a lot of little factors that work together to cause that change, and it is important to understand them all.
Avoid Damp Air
Insulation prevents moist air from entering the home from the environment. Not only is the added humidity uncomfortable, it can increase the amount of heat that it takes to warm the home. That is because the water in the air absorbs energy, and it does so much more effectively than the air around it. That makes the atmosphere inside the home resist temperature changes, which increases the amount of energy that your heater needs to use.
Blocking Heat Loss
The primary function of building insulation is to stop heat from passing through the walls of a home. Even a small amount of uninsulated space will let heat move more quickly, which is why windows, doors, and other areas that lack insulation are the main places that heat will leave the home. Adding insulation to as many of them as possible, including the crawlspace, will slow the loss of heat.
Preventing Air Movement
It is fairly easy for air to pass through any gaps in the structure of a home. Hot air will leave through those gaps during the winter, while air conditioning will leak out during the summer. Adding insulation seals those gaps and keeps the climate under control, so the heating and cooling systems need to do less work.
Humid air will naturally condense on metal surfaces, such as heating and cooling ducts. That condensation makes the ducts significantly less efficient because it will leech heat from them as the hot air passes through. Insulation in the crawlspace prevents high humidity, which will prevent that condensation from forming on the ducts in the first place.
Preventing Pest Damage
Insulation can include a barrier that protects from termites or other pests. Applying that barrier will prevent damage to your home, which opens up new gaps for air and energy to escape. By preventing the pests from coming in, you prevent damage that makes the home less energy-efficient over time.
Pipes have been known to burst when they get cold enough to freeze the water inside them. That can cause massive flooding, which damages the home and absorbs energy. Both of those problems will lead to lower energy efficiency in addition to other types of damage, which will raise your heating bill. Preventing that problem ensures that you don’t see a sudden spike in your energy use.