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Home Energy Audit

A home energy audit is an assessment of how much energy a home consumes.  The auditor’s advice during the assessment together with the home’s customized report after the audit result in a plan to make the home more energy efficient.  Audit + Report + Improvements = Savings.

An energy audit can not only reveal ways to help conserve precious energy, it can also save you significant amounts of money by maximizing energy efficiency in your household. During an audit, an expert examines the building for energy losses as well as ways to maximize energy usage (i.e.: more insulation in the building envelope, air sealing, improved heating/cooling systems).

Get Qualified for Energy Savings

As energy costs rise and more people realize that improved efficiency is valuable, retrofits make dollars and sense.  Where to begin?  Have an energy audit performed on your home.  An energy audit educates the homeowner on the products available today to increase the home’s comfort and efficiency.  Currently, technologies and techniques are being developed that will make renovations not just cosmetic, but comfortable and efficient as well.  The return on investment for efficient products installed properly will be much faster since homeowners are being incentivized for efficiency improvements to their homes.

The energy audit is defined as follows: An evaluation of energy consumption, as in a home, to determine ways in which energy can be conserved. 

Total Home Solutions determines energy conservation in your home a number of ways:

  1. Objective Advice utilizing the ‘home as a system’ principle
  2. Assessment techniques that pinpoint losses and opportunities to save energy
  3. Accurate documentation and reporting to the homeowner and Natural Resources Canada

More than 17 percent of the energy consumed in Canada is used to operate our homes. Buying an energy-efficient home or making energy-saving renovations can offer big savings.  Total Home Solutions can advise on the renovations that fit within plans/timelines while assisting the homeowner in accessing available incentives from your region.  Canadians spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars annually to heat, cool and light inefficiently.  Having an energy audit helps you make the right decision with regard to home improvements.  When you make purchases going forward, you will have the tools to help you decide which retrofits would be most beneficial for your home.

How much money are you pumping out annually through the “envelope” or “shell” of your home?  Total Home Solutions uses proven technology to assess homes for energy losses.  We identify leakage areas and energy drains, and help you find the most cost-effective and practical ways to cut down on your energy use. 

With information gathered in this expert energy audit, homes have the potential to be more energy efficient and comfortable.  Through such measures as air sealing, improved attic insulation, proper HVAC installation, crawl space, header and foundation insulation and sealing. The energy audit is a crucial first step because every home is different and therefore requires a customized energy solution.  Total Home Solutions documents the home from basement to attic, where you choose to implement the upgrades is completely up to you.  We are here as a resource to guide you through the practical steps that fit within your retrofit plans.

Benefits of a Home Energy Audit

(Proven results based on actual testing and upgrades pre-retrofit and post-retrofit)

  • Improved air quality and a healthier home
  • Lower utility bills
  • Noise reduction
  • Prevent wasted energy and needless spending
  • A prudent investment and increased home value
  • A positive impact on the environment
  • A customized HVAC system that delivers even temperatures to each room in a home

Your utility bill may be shocking, but it offers few helpful details: it doesn't tell you when your energy use peaks, doesn't explain how best to reduce power consumption, and doesn't tell you how your home is spending your money.  An energy audit uses data collected directly from your home and transferred into a helpful customized report, complete with a breakdown of recommendations.  From low-flush toilets to heat recovery ventilators the focus is saving you money.

We think it’s worth finding out. A home energy audit is one of the first steps to understanding your home's energy usage, as well as its overall health and performance. Using a combination of pressurization tests and common sense building science, a good auditor provides homeowners with a list of energy and money saving steps, explains how and why your house is costing you money, then prioritizes the steps to take to knock down those costs over the long haul.

What can I expect from a home energy audit?

A typical home energy audit is comprised of several steps

1) A measurement of the home's building envelope and volume.  A count of the rough openings in the envelope.

2) An insulation check from attic to foundation.

3) An air leakage test using a blower door, to measure the cumulative effect of all the air leaks in the home.

4) The auditor will examine and document your central heating and cooling systems as well as your hot water heating system.

5) Ventilation systems and auxiliary heating sources (fireplaces etc.) are examined and documented. 

6) Finally, expect an appliance, (i.e.: old refrigerator) to be tested with an electricity consumption monitor to demonstrate how grossly inefficient some old appliances are.

We believe that whole home energy audits by certified professionals are worth every penny, not to mention the pre and post audit process may allow the homeowner to receive applicable incentives.

Keep in mind that what turns up in the home energy audit report might surprise you: homeowners are often shocked to discover that all the little air leaks throughout their house add up to the equivalent of a window (or two) being left open year round!  Just remember that what you don't know can cost you: it's better to know!

An energy audit is likely the best place to start if you want to make your home more energy efficient.  Home energy auditors are trained to view your house as a system. They will give your house a current and potential energy efficiency rating in your customized report.  This report is helpful to inform you of components in the home that are adequate and what areas would benefit by upgrading.  Auditors are not there to sell you specific products and you are under no obligation to make the improvements they suggest.  They offer objective advice and are there to listen to your concerns on how to make your home more comfortable and efficient.

A home energy audit can identify the areas where you are losing the most heat and the most effective things you can do to improve its efficiency.  Bear in mind, where you are losing heat in the colder seasons, you are losing the cooled, conditioned air in the warmer months.  Follow through with the recommended upgrades and changes and you could save $100 or more a month on your energy bill.

There are many tools to learn, many are discussed on this website and incentives to reduce make sense.  A home energy audit outlines your home’s potential to reduce energy.  Minimized demand allows us to continue to rely on clean and renewable electricity and reduces the need for new infrastructure.  In addition, the CO2 reductions from reduced energy consumption in gas-heated homes have an immediate positive impact. 

It's always beneficial to know what parts of your home are least efficient so you can make a home energy improvement plan. If you are planning any renovations, a home energy audit will help guide the most energy efficient changes for your home. Not all upgrades are costly and some of them quickly pay for themselves by reducing your energy bill.

Our Home Energy Advisors

An Total Home Home Energy Advisor will perform a detailed on-site home energy audit of your home's energy consumption. The advisor will then provide you with a customized written report which includes a checklist of recommended retrofits to improve the energy efficiency of your home.  This report will also correspond to a grant amount for each eligible upgrade.  The incentive chart is regularly updated and current on our website. 

Should you follow the energy-saving recommendations for your home, you’ll not only reduce your energy costs, but you may be able to access Government or utility incentives for specific improvements.  Also, it is worth mentioning that your home will receive an “EnerGuide” rating and label. This is helpful in comparing your home to others.  If your home scores higher on the EnerGuide scale this translates to lower utility bills.

A home energy audit is a simple but diligent whole-house evaluation. We can assist you to identify energy loss areas in any type of house.  When assessing your home, we complete a checklist of areas inspected and leakage areas found during the blower door test.  The list we compile and present in your report will help you prioritize your energy efficiency upgrades.

Among other things, a home energy audit collects information to identify and document building envelope air leaks (drafts).  The potential energy savings from reducing drafts in a home may range from 5% to 30% per year, and the home is generally much more comfortable. We check for indoor air leaks, such as gaps along the baseboard or edge of the flooring and at junctures of the walls and ceiling.  We check to see if air is escaping through locations such as these:

  • Electrical outlets
  • Switch plates
  • Window frames
  • Baseboards
  • Weather stripping around doors
  • Fireplace dampers
  • Attic hatches
  • Wall or window-mounted air conditioners
  • Through-wall penetrations
  • Pet doors
  • Pocket doors

Also, we look for gaps around pipes and wires, foundation seals, and mail slots. We check to determine if the caulking and weather stripping are applied properly, leaving no gaps or cracks, and are in good condition.

Heat loss through the ceiling and walls in your home could be significant if the insulation levels are minimal. When your house was built, the builder likely installed the amount of insulation recommended at that time. Given today's energy prices (and future prices that will undoubtedly be higher), the level of insulation might be inadequate, especially if you have an older home. 

The home energy audit documents top to bottom, for example: If the attic hatch is located above a conditioned space, we check to see if it is at least as heavily insulated as the attic, is weather stripped, and closes tightly.  The blower door test can determine whether openings for items such as pipes, ductwork, and chimneys are sealed. 

A home energy auditor observes your heating and cooling systems to determine their current efficiency level.  Many homeowners know this all to well by simply by looking at their utility bill.  These units need proper air flow in order to run at optimum levels.  If you must replace your HVAC system, look for one with the Energy Star seal of approval.  The auditor can explain the latest heating systems and how they can benefit your home.

Total Home Solutions can guide you through the process, step by step.  Advisors complete rigorous training in home performance evaluation to better understand the dynamics of how homes should work as a system.

A home energy audit is a study of the systems in your home, how these systems function on their own, and how they contribute to your whole house comfort and energy efficiency.  We document your home's air sealing, insulation levels, and more. We also evaluate your home's energy consumption and heating and cooling efficiency.

Did you know?

Silicon from one ton of sand, used in photovoltaic cells, could produce as much electricity as burning 500,000 tons of coal.

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  • We have completed our energy evaluation process and have seen a huge change in our gas bills. They are consistently 1/3 to 1/4 of what they previously were. We are very impressed. Thank you!
Ron - Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Just to let you know that your help and good customer service is greatly appreciated. We will surely recommend your company to our friends who might be interested in ecoENERGY Evaluations. Great job from start to finish!
David - Surrey, British Columbia