Draughts: Detecting and Plugging

Draughts are troublesome inconveniences that can quickly make themselves known during the wintertime. As the name suggests, they’re gaps in your home that allow air to pass through them. They can be quite uncomfortable, troublesome and also seriously mitigate the effectiveness of your insulation batts. In addition, they can also end up costing you a hefty fee in electrical bills as your air conditioning will be working overtime to compensate for the escaping air. That’s why we’re going to be covering the basics of draught gaps including how to detect and plug them.

How do draught gaps occur?

There are two main reasons why you may experience draughts in your home.

  1. Unprofessional building practices that may have led to gaps being left. This could be things like poorly fitted windows and door frames or even walls not lining up properly with the flooring. If you find a fairly significant gap, then it’s probably due to poor workmanship.
  1. Natural wear and tear can cause draught gaps of varying sizes to occur over time and is especially common in older homes that have endured for several years as well as new homes that just haven’t been built very well.

How to detect a draught

Draughts can occur in many areas around a home. There are several giveaways such as high-pitched whistling sounds occurring (especially when it is windy) and physically feeling air coming through which is why one of the easiest ways of detecting a draught is by using your hand to feel for air. If you’re going to start an inspection, it’s best to know the hotspots:

  • Doorways are common places for draught gaps to occur – especially from the bottom where the door may not be securely closing and thus letting air in. If you can see natural light shine through your door or hear a whistling sound, then move your hand close to it to feel for a draught.
  • Similarly to doorways, windows can be the source of draughts and should be checked with the simple hand test. Another giveaway would be curtains in front of the window moving on their own.
  • Electrical appliances such as air conditioners or internet cables may also be the source of draughts. This could be due to their installation as both of the examples require access to the exterior of your home to function – so be sure to assess all electrical appliances for draughts as well.

In addition to these hotspots, we advise you inspect all your floorboards (if you have any) as they’re prone to draughts in addition to where walls meet the floor and ceiling/cornices and any joints between wall materials.

Plugging your draughts

There are several avenues you can follow depending on the severity of your draught gap and some can even be plugged relatively quickly. For smaller gaps – there are a variety of caulking solutions you can use. Simply clean the area of any old caulk, paint or dust/particles to guarantee an effective result before applying with a caulking gun. These are ideal for both interior and exterior gaps that are quite small and don’t have any retracting parts – such as window seals.

For larger gaps and the gaps around doors and working windows – more physical solutions are better suited. These can be foam rubber bits or pieces with bristles that can be attached on to guarantee a seal. For example, if you have a gap at the bottom of your door then you can attach a rubber foam bit to the bottom that (when installed/positioned properly) will guarantee a seal every time you close the door. You can also use weather stripping to achieve a similar result.

Are you interested in purchasing insulation batts?

Once you’ve plugged the draughts in your home, you’ll notice an increase in the effectiveness of your insulation batts. Thinking of retrofitting your old home with insulation or installing some in your not-yet-built home? Then Insulation Essentials is the place for you. With an abundant range of insulation types (all in varying R-values) and accessories – your ideal insulation solution is just a few clicks away.

Our reliable and efficient delivery service offers quick turnaround times as well as installation solutions – so you know your insulation batts will function optimally having been installed by professionals.

So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with our experts today to discuss what the best insulation batts for your home are by calling 03 8339 7111 or filling out the contact form on our website.