During the energy audit, as he inspected and imaged the house, Andy had several suggestions for improvement.
Tier One Suggestions:
1. Using a silicone caulk, seal up any and all places where cold air might enter the house.
2. Insulate the electrical and cable outlets located along the exterior wall (apparently there is something you can buy for this--we'll be making a trip to the hardware store soon enough).
3. Insulate the canned lighting.
4. Seal up the air vents. Meaning, the small cracks around the vent where the metal sleeve meets the drywall. This will ensure that only warm air is coming in, and cold air found between the walls doesn't enter the room.
5. Seal and insulate the attic door. We need to add a type of weatherstripping to the access door, and put foam insulation sheets on top (attic side). Currently, the attic access panel is completely bare.
6. Get a ceiling fan for the family room. It is a large room, and the fan will help circulate the warm air that is currently wafting around the ceiling.
7. Get curtains. I think Andy was flabbergasted that other than a few shades for privacy, we have no window coverings in the house.
Tier Two Suggestions:
1. Get a two-part foam insulation and insulate the base of the house (the area between the foundation and first floor).
2. Continue with the two-part foam in the attic to insulate the top of all the exterior walls (the perimeter floor of the attic).
Tier Three Suggestions:
1. Add more cellulose insulation to get the attic up to a R-50 or R-60.
2. Insulate the garage walls. Ordinarily this wouldn't be a problem, but we have two bedrooms located above the garage and I don't think the insulation between the garage ceiling and bedroom floors is adequate for long-term comfort.
Based on his ballpark estimates, Andy thinks we'd save 60-75% of the cost for all this if we do the work ourselves. Which we will. As it is the Martha thing to do.