The Comfortable Home Energy Audit Process
Although installing a programmable thermostat and compact fluorescent lights (CFL's) is a good start, increasing your home's energy efficiency requires more than that. A Comfortable Home Energy Audit is an in-depth energy audit inside and out and top to bottom. We climb up into your attic, investigate your basement and crawl into your crawlspace. All along the way we are measuring, inspecting and formulating the most cost-effective whole house energy efficiency plan that will yield long term financial rewards.
Our Energy Auditing Process
Duct Work: We inspect the duct work in your home (where accessible) to check for leaks and that all connections are properly sealed. Loose or disconnected duct work is not only inefficient but can cause poor indoor air quality and be a health risk. Inefficient duct systems commonly cause high energy costs.
Exterior inspection: We look for any structural damage, water damage, grading and drainage concerns, gutters and down spouts. We take not of the condition location and size of the windows, the house position and location and any vegetation that may aid in shading or act as a wind screen. We inspect the location, age, size and condition of your AC or heat pump. If the home has gas fired appliances we test the gas meter and gas line for leaks
Interior inspection: We inspect the condition and location of the windows and doors, inspect duct work (return and supply), location of vent registers, insulation, light fixtures. We recommend using Energy Star appliances. In addition, we scan the entire interior of the home with our state of the art infrared camera, looking for any insulation and or moisture problems. We test vent registers and recessed lights for air leakage.
Attic, basement and crawl space inspections: As water and/or moisture intrusion is the hidden danger, we pay extra close attention in these areas. These areas are more prone to moisture/water. Any presence of moisture can lead to a mold or mildew problem. We also measure and determine the insulation levels and R value, inspect air ducts (supply and return) for leaks. We locate all gaps and penetration and inspect for air sealing opportunities.
Combustion Appliances: We test the combustion appliances (furnace, hot water heater and/or boiler) to determine how safe and efficiently they are operating. These are a series of test that check for spillage, draft, efficiency and most importantly carbon monoxide. These tests ensure that under worst case scenario conditions the appliance(s) will not back draft and bring carbon monoxide into the home. In addition, we inspect the heat exchanger for cracks and check the gas lines for any leaks.
Blower Door Test: In this part of the energy audit, we determine how leaky your home is in terms of how much air is entering the home (infiltration) and how much air is leaving the home (exfiltration). First, we calculate the BAS (Building Airflow Standard). Which tells us how much airflow is needed in your home. Then we begin the blower door test which will show us how much air is going through your home and where the air leaks are located. At this point, you will see and feel where your home is losing energy. Now we are able to FEEL the airflow pathways and locate places where air sealing is necessary. This will allow you to have a tighter home and start saving money on your energy/utility bill.
Infrared camera scan: While the blower door test is running we will scan the interior and exterior walls of the home. Here you will SEE where the air is infiltrating the home. This will also show us if and where the home may be missing insulation.
You receive all this information from our home energy audit. It's a great way to pinpoint places your home is losing money and exactly how to be more energy efficient.