Experts Say Home Heating Costs Can Be Lowered 30 Percent With Proper Weatherization

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Sheri Walker's house never feels warm enough, even when it's above zero.

Now that it's below zero, the house is colder than ever.

"I have the heat pump, and it's colder air,” explained Walker.

Her house may feel drafty because it is drafty. Many homes are not as insulated as they could be.

The Department of Energy says you could cut your heating bills by 30 percent simply by properly insulating and weatherizing your home.

10TV enlisted the help of Michael Duchesne from the State Fire Marshall, and his thermal imaging camera, to help us locate the worst escape routes for a house's heat.

"So what I'm seeing through here is a pretty stark contrast between the left portion of the door and the actual door itself.  It looks like the left side's definitely giving off some heat there,” said Duchesne.

The brighter the color on the device’s screen - the more heat is escaping. A look at the front window seems to show pretty good insulation.

"And then when you go up to the chimney, it's lit up like a Christmas tree. It's definitely a huge difference between the chimney and the rest of the roof,” added Duchesne.

Air leaks through gaps around windows and doors. You can lose 10 percent of home heat through windows and 11 percent through doors.

A fireplace flue that doesn't seal properly can cost you 14 percent of your heat. Fifteen percent of the heat can vanish through improperly sealed attic holes that accommodate pipes, ducts and vents.  

Your garage door can also be a giant hole that sucks warm air out of your home and lets cold drafts in.  

For Sherri, it may be time for a home energy audit when the cold air is gone.