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Sealing air leaks: A little caulk can go a long way

Article was added on Friday, December 22, 2017

Air leaks in your home add up. Finding and sealing those leaks can save you energy and money. Here's a tip from Santee Electric Co-op that can help keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter while lowering your utility bill.

Caulking cracks and openings to the outside can save you money every year. So let's get started. First, you'll need to find the air leaks in your home. One way to do that is to wait for a windy day, and then carefully hold a lit incense stick or a smoke pen next to your windows, doors, electrical outlets and other spots where air could be leaking into your home from outside. If the smoke stream moves horizontally, you've found a leak that needs to be sealed.

Next, you'll need caulk and a caulking gun. Experts recommend using silicone caulk, which is waterproof, flexible and long-lasting. Caulk can seal cracks and gaps that are less than ΒΌ-inch wide. Remove any old caulk and clean the surface before applying new caulk. Fresh caulk takes several hours, or longer, to dry, so it's best to do the job on a dry day when the humidity is relatively low and the temperature is above 45 degrees F.

In addition to caulk, you can use low-expansion spray foam to seal leaks.

For other tips on how to save energy-and money-visit Touchstone Energy's energy-saving website. Find out how the little changes add up at

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