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I invite you to explore my YouTube channel, where you'll see first-hand how insulation looks in dark and mysterious attics, crawl spaces, and basements scattered across Maryland. Witness first-hand how we tackle the unique challenges found in these hidden spaces, and gain valuable knowledge on how to conquer your own house.

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Eric Gans
Certified Energy Auditor


Residential Comfort & Energy Efficiency

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I invite you to explore my YouTube channel, where you'll see first-hand some of the issues we are out there fixing.

Saturday, April 09 2022
Maryland Housing Style Guide for Insulation

Energy auditor and window specials

Written by Eric Gans
I have completed over 2000 Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® home energy audits in Maryland and I like to write about my experiences.


I've Been All Around Maryland Since 2006

One reason I left the hotel industry in 2006 was Beltway traffic. Little did I know that I would eventually be driving all over Maryland - and loving it!

One day, I might stop in towns like Shady Side, Germantown, or Bel Air. On other days, I could start in Prince George's County and end in Baltimore City. As I write this, last week, I began in Annapolis near the water and ended up in Sykesville on a farm.

Energy audit at a home in Annapolis on Crab Creek

When you travel to different communities regularly, it becomes easier to see similar types and styles of houses in different pockets.

For example, you will find many homes in Annapolis that have a distinct feel of a beach cottage. In some cases, the houses are insulated as if they are only occupied in summer. Yet, nowadays, the house is occupied all year long, but the insulation doesn't get any love!

Another example can be found in Bowie, where large neighborhoods are made up exclusively of Levitt homes, built on slabs with their furnaces next to the laundry machine. These houses were poorly insulated, and most of the homes that have newer insulation still didn't get the treatment right.

In Columbia, Maryland, there are a lot of Colonial-style A-frame houses with big attics and electric heat pumps that don't stop running on extreme weather days...and there is a common reason.

Common Issues Exist Amongst Similar Style Homes

Getting early exposure to so many houses in Maryland before getting certified as an energy auditor has given me a huge advantage when correctly diagnosing problems and recommending treatment for my customers.

By having so much exposure in advance, I have had much more time to focus on the issues that exist and begin to find the patterns and similarities surrounding the issues in each housing type. Knowing what is happening and knowing that it happens to so many others gives me the confidence to solve the problem.

Creating a Maryland housing style guide for insulation should help Maryland homeowners better understand the different problems that exist in different types of homes around where they live.

open flue chase at attic floor causes high energy bills and comfort problems  Open flue chase in a home causes high energy bills and comfort problems in many homes in maryland

Same problem in two different Maryland attics.

Help You Discover Easy-to-Fix Problems in Your Home

One great way to improve your home's energy efficiency and overall comfort is to perform a quick assessment of the ducts around your HVAC air handler. These ducts are typically in the basement or in a closet.

I often see large gaps and holes in HVAC ducts near the handler. These issues are low-hanging fruit that don't require an energy audit to learn about and fix.

Audits uncover common, easy-to-fix inefficiencies

Another example is a split-level house with an attic access panel on a vertical wall. It could be in the staircase, linen closet, or bedroom closet. Typically, those panels are not properly insulated and sealed, making the upstairs more uncomfortable.

Learn How an Energy Audit Might Help You

One of the biggest challenges for most people is keeping an open mind, especially about the things that we are all supposed to know—like how to take care of our homes.

At the completion of an energy audit, I can feel my customers' gratitude and appreciation flowing. I know that I have enlightened them on some level regarding the source of their issue—and it makes a whole lot of sense. 

So, if you still think it is windows and doors or a shiny, new HVAC, you might be missing the point, making you a great candidate for the assessment! 

The Guide's Purpose

Learning about common problems and solutions in similar houses is a great starting point. This process could help you see the connection between the value of the energy audit and how it can help educate you and set you on the right path toward better comfort and energy efficiency. 


Find a home near you (by county) that has similar characteristics:



Anne Arundel County


1960 Cape St. Claire Colonial Style


1990s Crofton Colonial Style


Baltimore City


Baltimore County

Middle River

1990s Middle River Single Family with Garage


Carroll County


Harford County



Howard County


Columbia 1969 Contemporary Rancher Style

Columbia 1980s Colonial Style


Woodstock 1990s Colonial Style


Montgomery County


Bethesda Pre-1950 Colonial

1984 Rockville Townhouse


Prince George's County


Bowie Old Levitt Cape Cod





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