Energy Audit Eligibility Requirements:
- Building Audits must be performed by an analyst certified by the Building Performance Institute (BPI) or Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET), and documented with a dated copy of the auditor’s report identifying the applicant’s property and the auditor’s certification number.
- Farm audits must be conducted by technical service providers (TSPs) who are certified as qualified by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s NRCS Techreg Process. For more information about the Techreg Process, please visit: http://techreg.usda.gov/ or http://www.va.nrcs.usda.gov/technical/tsp_page.html. To see a list of farm auditors who provide services in Virginia, please see the attached list: Farm Auditors List.
- Amount of rebate: not to exceed $250 or documented cost, whichever is lower.
- A home audit must be performed on an existing (not new) dwelling. The purpose of the rebate program is to replace older less efficient equipment that currently is in use with new more energy efficient equipment, or to upgrade existing buildings.
- Only audits conducted on or after March 26, 2010, and which meet all other program requirements, are eligible for consideration.
What is an Energy Audit?
An energy audit is the first step to assess how much energy a building or operation consumes and to evaluate what measures you can take to make your building or operation more energy efficient. A home energy audit can identify cost effective ways to improve the comfort and efficiency of your home; and, increasingly in the last several decades, industrial, commercial, and agricultural energy audits have exploded as the demand to lower expensive energy and other costs of doing business. These audits can evaluate buildings and operations for potential improvements.
The audit should include a written report estimating energy use, given local climate criteria, roof overhang, and solar orientation; and can point out problems with air leakage, inadequate insulation, inefficient appliances, heating and cooling malfunctions, indoor air quality issues, and duct system inefficiencies. The auditor’s report should also identify the most cost effective measures applicable to your building's or operation’s energy performance and provide you with a list of recommendations.
For farmers interested in securing an energy audit for their agricultural operations, while eligible for this DMME Rebate Program, please note that the USDA/Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will be expanding their technical and financial assistance services in FY2010 to include incentive payments for on-farm energy audits. This new assistance is authorized by the 2008 Farm Bill and could include limited-scope as well as comprehensive farm audits. The purpose of the audits is to assess current energy use and identify opportunities to achieve on-farm efficiency gains. Farmers interested in an audit can apply at one of the 42 NRCS Service Centers located around the state. NRCS assisted energy audits are expected to begin in 2010. For more information, contact your local NRCS office: http://www.va.nrcs.usda.gov/.
How to Find An Energy Auditor
There are several places where you can locate professional energy auditing services. The state or local government energy or weatherization office may help you identify a local company or organization that performs audits. Your electric or gas utility may conduct residential energy audits or recommend local auditors. Also check your telephone directory under headings beginning with the word "Energy" for companies that perform residential energy audits.
The VA Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME) has compiled a list of building auditors from multiple sources who do business in Virginia. This list is not exhaustive, and will be updated from time-to-time. Please note: DMME does not endorse any company so due diligence should be used in making your contractor choices. This list can be viewed at: Energy Auditors - . If you are a building energy auditor services provider and either wish to be added to or removed from this list, please notify Robin Jones of DMME, at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Farm auditors can be found at: http://techreg.usda.gov/CustLookupTSP.aspx?fips=51165&categoryid=&categorytext=&serviceid=&servicetext= ; by contacting your local NRCS office: http://www.va.nrcs.usda.gov/ ; or at the NRCS TECHREG website at: http://techreg.usda.gov/.
Links to Internet Sites about Energy Audits
- From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_audit
- From the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE): http://www.energysavers.gov/your_home/energy_audits/index.cfm/mytopic=11160
- From EERE’s page on “Professional Home Energy Audits”: http://www.energysavers.gov/your_home/energy_audits/index.cfm/mytopic=11180
- From the Virginia Energy Savers Handbook’s Chapter 1 on Energy Fitness, page 13: http://www.dmme.virginia.gov/DE/ConsumerInfo/energysaverhandbook.shtml
- From the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy Home Performance with Energy Star website: http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=home_improvement.hm_improvement_audits
- For information about a HERS (home energy rating system) Rater from RESNET (Residential Energy Services Network), please visit: http://www.natresnet.org/directory/raters.aspx
- For information about BPI (Building Performance Institute), please visit: http://www.bpi.org/content/home/index.php