Draught proofing is finding and fixing draughts to make your home more comfortable and energy efficient. Draughts are similar to ventilation, in that both let fresh air into your home. Good ventilation helps reduce condensation and damp and can help cool down a hot house. Draughts, on the other hand, are uncontrolled – they let too much cold air in and waste too much heat.
Draught proofing stops warm air from escaping your home in winter and hot air from entering in summer, saving you money and making your home more comfortable. Up to 25 per cent of winter heat loss from existing houses is caused by air leakage (also known as draughts). In fact 9 out of 10 homes in Victoria have unwanted draughts.
Draughts come into your house through gaps and cracks around doors, windows, exhaust fans, fireplaces and so on. To draught-proof your home you will firstly need to find the draughts.
Special care needs to be taken in houses that have internal gas appliances, especially houses with:
All flueless gas appliances require a certain amount of fixed ventilation to expel the products of combustion from the home and operate safely. Open flued gas heaters – which draw combustion air from the room in which they are located – require a supply of fresh room air to operate safely.
Fixed ventilation openings required for flueless and open flued gas heaters must not be blocked.
If you undertake draught sealing in your home and you have one of these types of heating, you should get a licensed gas fitter to check the safe operation of the appliances before they are used. Other indoor gas appliances, such as internal open flued gas water heaters or ducted heaters, should also be checked by a licensed gas fitter.
It is recommended that you have your gas appliances serviced at least every 2 years. Energy Safe Victoria provides further information on the safe operation of gas appliances.
Your approach to sealing draughts, and the products that you'll need, will vary depending where the draughts are located.
The Victorian Energy Saver Incentive Scheme provides support to Victorians who install certain draught-proofing and weather-sealing products.
Install insulation in your ceiling, walls and floors to create a sealed envelope which acts like a thermos in winter and an esky in summer.
Energy efficient appliances will save you money. The Smarter Choice retail program will help you make better choices when buying new appliances, hardware and lighting.
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