Does Your Home Need to Breathe?

Published on September 28, 2018

Does Your Home Need to Breathe?


A common misconception among homeowners is that a home needs to ‘breathe’ to have proper ventilation. While this may be true in a certain sense, it's actually very detrimental to energy usage and temperature control if ventilation is occurring through small leaks, instead of through a controlled mechanical means (such as a Heat Recovery Ventilator/ HRV), or a dedicated ventilation point.


Here at BSG we are highly concerned with the deep energy retrofit of your home; meaning that we scrutinize every possible source of energy loss. From the smallest air leak that finds its way through the cracks of an unsealed wall socket, to optimizing performance on large appliances such as your furnace, our Certified Energy Advisors can provide the tools and experience needed to help you understand your options, and what changes should be made to have the biggest impact in saving you energy.


Each house is different, and as a result there is no cookie-cutter way of maintaining continuous insulation and proper ventilation. Drawing from a vast array of techniques and technology, we conduct tests in accordance to each house’s specific needs and design specifications. One of the more common services we provide in order to ensure proper air tightness is a Blower Door Test.


What is a Blower Door Test and how can it help?


Blower Door Test


A blower door test is a measure of air leakage in a home. It’s conducted by placing a large fan unit into the entrance doorway and blowing the indoor air to the outside .This depressurization of the inside space causes outside air to be drawn into the home through the leaks and cracks and allows for that volume of air to be measured.

It also allows us to determine exactly where the leaks are through the use of thermal imaging and touch, so that we may target the problem points directly.


A Blower Door Test is part of the service for home renovation rebate programs, including a comparative pre and post work air tightness test during renovations. This is applicable for Ontario homeowners who are looking to claim rebates of up to $5000 for energy improvements, upgrades, and retrofits from the partnership between Union Gas and the Ontario Government.


Proper Ventilation is Important


Even though it may not be noticeable, there is constant air movement and circulation occurring throughout your home. Your HVAC system is directly involved in regulating air flow and indoor comfort level, but without proper air tightness and home ventilation, unseen leaks and cracks can waste your conditioned interior air. This results in higher energy bills and less control over your home’s comfort during both hot and cold seasons.


Furnace Inspection


Through the software component of our Blower Door Test, we quantify the amount of leak-prompted air loss with a number known as Air Changes per Hour (ACH). Assisted by this information, our qualified BSG Energy Advisors can support you in choosing which energy saving upgrades and retrofits to consider first, in order for you to see the most cost-effective results.


Your home does need to breathe, but it’s best to ensure that it’s a measured and controlled breathing, with any undesirable leaks being accounted for and properly sealed.

The Canada Greener Homes Grant offers home efficiency renovation grants up to $5,000.

Homeowners Canada-wide are eligible for the Canada Greener Homes Grant, announced on May 27, 2021. This new incentive offers up to $5,000 in grants for home efficiency retrofit renovations, plus a $600 reimbursement for pre- and post-work EnerGuide evaluations. Eligible retrofit scopes include home insulation, heating, doors, windows, photovoltaic solar panels, resiliency measures, and thermostats.

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