Residential Energy Audits (for home-owners and home-buyers)
Home Energy Ratings–HERS-rating (for home-owners, home-buyers, home-sellers, and home-builders)
Small Commercial Energy Audits (for mixed-use and non-industrial building-owners)
I am Curry Caputo–energy auditor and building consultant. I am certified by the Building Performance Institute as both a Building Analyst and Envelope Professional. I am also a RESNET-certified HERS-rater through MaineStar, and have performed hundreds of audits over the past 9-years.
My background as a building contractor gives me an advantage over other auditors—I know how to identify building types and assemblies, AND the proper materials and methods required for a reliable retrofit. Living off-the-grid in a modern home, I also know solar–passive and active—and how and when to incorporate renewable energy into your home energy mix.
A Sustainable Structures Energy Audit and Home Rating can qualify your project for:
- Efficiency Maine rebates and financing,
- Energy-Star Homes,
- LEED and Passive House certifications,
- and Energy Efficient Mortgages (EEMs).
Energy Audit Service Summary:
- an initial evaluation: the primary energy audit (4-6 hours on-site)
- a report detailing findings/recommendations (up to 2-weeks following evaluation)
- a test-out procedure (following improvements to verify upgrades and calculate State rebates)
How to Prepare for an Audit:
- Estimate of annual fuel consumption (for heating/cooling and electricity)–ideally 3 years in the past;
- No wood fires burning or smoldering;
- Close and lock all windows (and storms);
- Provide manuals for all combustion appliances (furnace, boiler, water heaters).
Onsite Evaluation includes:
Exterior grade analysis (drainage)
Water infiltration (basements, roofs, soffits, etc.)
Structural Inspection (sills, floor joists, framing problems)
Thermal barrier analysis (type, quantity and quality)
Air barrier testing and diagnostics (blower door testing)
Mechanical ventilation sizing
Window condition and treatments
Heating system testing and diagnostics
Heating ductwork evaluation
Appliance efficiency survey
Combustible gas detection
Carbon monoxide testing
Combustion safety testing
Combustion efficiency analysis and, other services upon request.
Offsite Analysis and Reporting:
Building Modeling. Using building modeling software (REMRATE), I model your building as-is as well as with recommended improvements. Reporting includes includes:
- a line-item estimate of the retrofit actions (with full materials-and-methods description);
- Summary Report summarizing the audit findings, and presenting prioritized improvements for energy-efficiency, health and safety. Includes improvement payback period, $-savings/year, %-savings for heating fuels, %-savings for all fuels;
- Award the building with a HERS-rating (in the as-is condition, if requested);
- An image CD containing digital images, infrared images, reports, and product specifications sheets.
Reasons to get an energy audit
- Ice dams
- High energy bills
- Condensation on windows or other areas
- Wet Basement
- Uncomfortably areas in the home
- Odors from furnace, boiler, or wood stove
- Dry rotted wood in basement or other areas
- Water stains on interior surfaces
If you are a home or small business owner in Maine, my Energy Audit and HERS Rating can help you to:
1) reduce energy costs;
2) improve health and safety;
3) increase personal comfort;
4) qualify for rebates and financing;
5) lower your carbon footprint;
6) increase the value of your home.
7) diagnose your home’s energy issues
How Does a BPI or RESNET Certified Home Performance Analysis (Home Energy Audit) work?
Would you like to know how your home performs? Call (207) 446 7924 to set up an appointment, or click here to contact us by email.
Detailed Description of audit procedure:
The test takes about 20 minutes and typically depressurizes the home to -50 pascals which is similar to a 25 mph wind striking all sides of the home. After the test, the fan is adjusted to a lower level and thermal imaging is used to scan the home for air infiltration.
Thermal imaging, also called infrared imaging or thermography, is used to find and measure surface temperature differences. In a home energy audit, entire rooms can be quickly scanned for air leaks, missing insulation, moisture problems, and a variety of other issues.
In order to achieve useful thermal images, there should be a temperature differential of at least 5 degrees F between inside and outside. By using the blower door in conjunction with thermal imaging, many hidden leaks can be found.
A collection of still thermal images with explanation is included in the report.
As part of the energy audit, carbon monoxide levels are checked at several locations in the home. High level readings are noted in the reports, and are possible indicators of backdrafting, improper burner adjustment, cracked heat exchangers, or other issues. Gas-fired ovens and ranges are also tested for carbon monoxide.
All homes should have at least one carbon monoxide detector (in addition to smoke detectors) near the living and bedroom areas. These detectors should be replaced every few years as the sensors tend to deteriorate.
All accessible gas lines are checked for leakage using similar equipment to what is used by the gas company. Many leaks can not be found by smell alone.
Ratings for your furnace and air conditioning equipment are referenced, general conditions are noted, duct systems are examined, filters checked, and findings are included in the report.