A snowy rooftop can be a sign of energy efficiency. Heat lost though the attic is the first place to look for people with unusually high-energy bills.
Guy Burnett, Burnett Insulation: â€œI tell my customers to start at the top and work your way down because most of your heat loss is through the attic.â€ Burnett says attic insulation makes the greatest difference in heat loss - and the corresponding cost of heating a home. â€œOften we'll add eight or more inches to what they already have.â€
There's an easy way to check your attic insulation this time of year. If your roof is still covered with snow, you're probably OK, but if the snow has melted, you're losing heat - and need more insulation in the attic. There's a more complicated test that shows exactly how much heat a house loses. A device called an infiltrometer uses a big fan to test for leaks. Jay Rathbun, Air Assurance: â€œBasically what we can do here is pull a vacuum on an entire home. And when we do this we can print out a list of how much square footage of heat loss you have in a house.â€
And once they know heat is escaping - they look for it with canned smoke. It's a relatively inexpensive way to determine what a house needs - whether it's a whole new heating unit - or just some more insulation.