Friday, September 17, 2010

Existing Home HERS II audits

Well, actually the HERS II audit does not exist just yet, while the CEC is still reviewing the Software and the reports generated by it. As it is required to have one of these audits to get your permit in San Rafael and Marin County Bldg departments, we are providing the reports as they are now. The approval will probably happen soon but at the same time the building departments are accepting the submissions as we are providing them.
What is a HERS II audit you ask?

Here is what is involved with an audit. Essentially it is like a check up at the doctor, but of course we do house calls. You may feel a little uneasy with us crawling all around but this is what it takes to really assess your house’s performance. If there is a room where you absolutely don’t want us to go, that is your right but it does add challenges to our process.

You are welcome to observe and learn right along with us just what is going on with your house. It takes the better part of a day to do a complete audit. When all is done I will provide you with a report that documents the issues we find and gives you an itemized list of things to improve your homes performance or comfort. There will also be a rating number assigned to your home comparing it to what has been determined to be the standard home by the 2008 Title 24 Standards rated at 100. It is conceivable that your home could rate at 100 or lower but I’ve not seen any yet.

Your preparation for our visit:

Think about any issues you may be having with the house, cold, odors, leaks, drafts, etc.

Provide copy of at least 1 year of utility bills

log on your account at PG&E.

click on usage. they have the last two years available.

Print out table

Graph electric usage and Gas usage, selecting degree days at bottom of graph

Print these two graphs

Would also like to see some actual bills to see if they are hitting the tiers

Clear access to heat registers and utility areas, such as furnace and water heater

For the blower door test we will put a large calibrated fan into an appropriate door opening sealed with a special frame and canvas apparatus. With all exterior openings closed we then blow air into the home, pressurizing it to 50 pascals. The fan is attached to a device that can then read the CFM leakage of the structure by comparing pressure differences between the interior and exterior. This value is useful for comparison sake to a standard building. It is then possible to walk around the home and find what may be the worst sources of leakage.

For the duct leakage test we seal all the heat registers with tape and then through the cold air return use another calibrated fan to pressurize the duct system, again we can determine the leakage through pressure differences. Obviously we will need to access all of the registers.

I will also measure all existing windows and count all the lights.

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