How to Choose a Home Energy Auditor
There are probably some significant ways you can improve your home’s energy efficiency. Everything from air leaks in your ductwork system, poorly installed or maintained basement and attic insulation, along with the low efficiency of your furnace or air conditioning unit can all affect how efficient your home is.
This is a growing concern as people around the world are looking to reduce their energy use for environmental reasons — and not to mention the fact that an energy-efficient home has lower energy bills. So regardless of how energy efficient you think your home is, you would certainly benefit from getting a home energy audit.
What is a Home Energy Auditor?
A good home energy auditor will conduct a series of inspections, tests, and calculations in and around your home to complete a home energy assessment that will identify specific problems in your home that can be fixed to improve its overall energy efficiency. For instance, they may recommend that you need more ventilation in your attic via an attic fan or suggest that an energy-saving whole house fan would reduce your AC costs by 75% to 90%.
But how do you go about finding a good home energy auditor? Below, we discuss the steps you should take to choose a reliable, professional home energy auditor.
Choose a Full Home Energy Audit
Not all energy audits are equal. For example, some utility companies may sponsor a free or cheap home energy audit; however, these usually aren’t comprehensive, and won’t give you the full picture that a full energy audit would.
Choose a Home Energy Auditor That Does At Least the Following:
- Insulation inspection
- Blower door test
- HVAC and ductwork evaluation
Plus, a fully-qualified energy auditor should be licensed as an energy or building analyst, proving that they completed studies and testing related to the field.
Choose an Auditor That Provides a Home Energy Score
A home energy score is a useful tool for assessing the energy efficiency of a home. An auditor will rate the house on a range of one to ten, 10 indicating the lowest energy use. The score is determined by rating the efficiency of a house based on its size, age, along with heating, cooling, and water systems. It will also provide an estimate showing how much energy your house will use in a year given the size of your family and the local climate.
How to Find and Choose a Home Energy Auditor
It’s important to get a list of recommended local auditors so that you have a selection and choose the one that comes most highly recommended.
Here are some ways you can find an auditor:
- You can find a list of auditors by contacting your state or local government energy office to receive recommendations
- Look up your state on the Residential Energy Services Network
- Ask your energy/utility company for recommendations (just don’t be tempted if they offer you a discounted audit, you usually get what you pay for!)
Finally, once you have a list of recommended auditors, reach out to them for references, look up their reviews online, their qualifications, and ask them what their energy assessment consists of. When it comes to home energy assessments, the more comprehensive is usually better.