20 Jul 10 Questions to ask the Energy Auditor before having an Energy Audit
Home energy audits improve your home comfort and reduce your utility bills. However, achieving the desired results requires a proper energy assessment. In order to complete a qualified home energy audit, you need a certified energy auditor.
Why work with a certified energy auditor? Because certain audits, such as free "walk-through" audits only pay lip service to your home. A proper energy assessment provides a comprehensive report and outlines high priority projects that reduce energy costs.
How To Find a Quality Energy Auditor
The value of a home energy audit depends on the quality of the energy auditor. For example, an auditor that provides audits as part of an existing company may offer biased recommendations. Conversely, a certified and unbiased energy auditor provides neutral recommendations that yield the most improvement in your home.In order to determine the quality of your energy auditor, then ask questions. To help, here are some questions to ask an energy auditor during the due diligence phase. Prior to hiring an auditor, ask some questions, such as:
- Will the energy audit include a review of my home’s utility bills?
- Does the energy audit analyze my home’s air leakage rate using a blower door test?
- Does the audit include a thermal evaluation of my home using an infrared camera?
- How does the energy audit provide recommendations? Will the auditor create a prioritized list of recommendations that aim to improve my home’s energy efficiency, comfort, health and safety?
- Do the list of recommendations include estimated costs and quantified benefits for each item?
- Is the energy audit unbiased? So, will the audit contain energy savings recommendations for (at minimum):
- Heating & cooling systems
- Domestic hot water systems
- Insulation upgrades
- Air sealing improvements
- Lighting & appliance upgrades
- Health & safety improvements Mechanical ventilation options
- Renewable energy opportunities
- Will the energy audit include recommendations for health and safety problems identified in my home?
- Does the energy audit provide a written report that summarizes the audit's findings and recommendations?
- Will the energy audit process include post-testing that verifies air leakage reductions and thermal improvements?
- Does the auditor hold any unique qualifications such as Building Performance Institute (BPI) certifications, licenses, etc.?