Saving money with an energy audit

By Ashley Porter - email

JACKSON, MS (WLOX) - Did you know a fan could blow hundreds of dollars off your utility bills?

At a house waiting to be closed on in Jackson, people are using the fan to de-pressurize and see where air ends up. They go from room to room, pressing on a small container filled with smoke. If the smoke shoots straight up and lingers in the air, there's not a problem. If the smoke blows back toward the person, there's an air leakage.

"You can actually see when I blow air, it's blowing so hard, it's blowing the smoke out," said Bo Smith, the head of Bo Knows Mortgages, as he kneeled on the floor directly outside a closet.

"We're plugging in those air leaks, putting in better insulation, and reducing the cost of utilities by $600 to $900 annually."

But that closet isn't the only place that air is going nowhere.

"The typical home in the United States has a 3x3 hole," Gary Smith said.

Smith is a green building verifier for the National Association of Home Builders. And he's on the hunt for those holes.

"A small leak can have a tremendous effect," he said. "Part of the concrete floor has settled a little, and we've got a large crack at the bottom of the wall."

The crack is so large that wind is seeping through, causing debris to blow against the wall.

"That is a huge energy hog," Smith said.

While fixing those energy hogs may cost thousands of dollars for consumers, utility savings could make up for it in a matter of years.

Click here to learn more ways to make your home more energy efficient, or call the State Energy Office at (601) 359-6600.

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