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Home Energy Audit Maryland Tools

Essential Tools

essential energy audit tools

Measuring, recording and taking notes are all part of the job!

Laser Pointer

best Maryland energy auditor

Auditors need a way to point out issues and treatment in hard to reach places

Gas Leakage Detector

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A gas sniffer alerts the auditor to a potential leak and to take a second verification step

Personal CO Monitor

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Monitoring CO around the house can catch things like residual CO from the garage

Combustion Analyzer

Maryland Home Energy Audit

This tool measures the furnace efficiency, the temperature in the flue and the amount of CO

Pressure & Flow Gauge

Home energy audit Maryland

A manometer measures pressures around the house as well as flow for air leakage testing

Adjustable Ladder

Maryland energy audits

Adjustable ladders make an auditor ready for any investigatory situation

Headlamp

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A hands free headlamp will provide an auditor with enough light to properly investigate.

Blower Door Fan

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Blower door fans  must be calibrated and carefully transported between uses.

IR Camera

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Great for finding out what is going on behind hard to reach places

Auditor Toolkit

maryland home energy audit

A home energy auditor will have several important diagnostic tools

Home Energy Audit Maryland - What to Expect

Maryland home energy audit

A comprehensive home energy audit in Maryland can guide you to greater comfort and set a clear path for your next home improvement project.  We hear about too many Maryland home energy audits that fall short on the overall customer experience.  A home energy audit should be interactive and enlightening.  It should uncover ways in which you can improve comfort, energy efficiency and indoor air quality and incorporate the best practices and techniques when planning new projects around the house.

If you had a Maryland home energy audit or plan to get one, you should be able to identify with several if not all of the following take-aways:

  • The technician explained the home energy audit process
  • You will know how much insulation you have and how much you need for your Maryland home
  • The energy auditor answered all of your questions
  • The technician showed you something that you did not realize about your homehome energy audit maryland
  • Parts of the home energy audit were interactive
  • You part ways with your energy auditor feeling smarter about your home and more in control
  • A clear priority list begins to emerge with both wants and needs addressed
  • At least one do-it-yourself tip that will make an immediate impact on your energy usage/comfort
  • You remember the blower door test!
  • You felt a leakage point somewhere inside your house
  • Your home was left in the same way it was prior to home energy audit!

These are all signs that you have had an excellent home energy audit in Maryland!

Learn About Everyday Things in Your Home

home energy audit maryland

A disconnected exhaust fan in the attic can be a silent energy waster & comfort disruptor.

It is no surprise that with today's "plug and play" culture, there are many things around the house that we assume are working properly.  A home energy audit assesses the house as a complete system and it illuminates things that occupants of the home may not pay a lot of attention to, but they are actually quite important.

Hidden Leakage Locations
Let's take the bathroom exhaust fan as an example.  A home energy audit in Maryland includes looking at the home's overall ventilation and indoor air quality.  The fan in this photo from an actual Maryland audit is located in an upstairs bathroom.  A properly installed fan must have a duct connected to it for the air to be properly moved to the "outdoors".  Not only does an improperly vented fan cause moisture build-up in the attic, the fan also proved to be a gateway from the attic to inside of the house wreaking havoc on the energy bill and bathroom comfort. 

A home energy audit will uncover this problem when it exists in a home.  Often times, for very little investment, a problem like this can be fixed saving you ten times as much as you spend for the fix. 

Health & Safety Testing

A Maryland home energy audit is great because not only does it help identify ways to save energy and evaluate indoor air quality but it also provides testing to help identify health or safety issues around your home.Maryland home energy audit

Gas Leakage Testing
One example of a health and safety test that can be a big help to unsuspecting homeowners that have gas appliances is gas leakage testing.  Many gas appliances use older gas line connections that have not been touched or inspected in as many as fifty years!  A gas leakage test can help uncover gas leakage points that are not only costly, but also potentially dangerous as well.

Take look at this detected and confirmed gas leak during a home energy audit in Maryland. 

Look for the rising bubbles confirming there is a leak.

Combustion Safety
A home environment is subject to many different dynamics including pressure.  Pressure inside a home varies from house to house, neighborhood to neighborhood.  When a combustion appliance, such as a hot water heater or furnace is running, the conditions in the house could change the way the appliance runs.  If the change is too much for the system, it could cause a hazardous situation inside the home to unsuspecting inhabitants.  

Combustion safety testing for gas fueled houses is a key benefit of a Maryland home energy audit.  The house is tested in the worst possible conditions so that the homeowner can feel comfortable and confident when using appliances during normal conditions.

Additionally, a Maryland home energy auditor is checking for CO (Carbon Monoxide) on all floors of the home during the audit for any irregular readings as well as at the combustible appliances.

Home Energy Audit Maryland

Combustion appliances (oil/gas furnace, oil/gas H20 heater) are tested during a home energy audit

HVAC System Inspection

Another important part of a Maryland home energy audit is having the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) inspected by a trained and certified building analyst.  Properly identifying where the supply and return plenum are located in relation to the rest of the home are important in determining possible recommendations for improvements.  

Venting systems are visually assessed as other systems, such as the hot water heater are tested for proper ventilation and flue configuration.  Ducts and chimneys are visually assessed for the correct pitch and for any holes or cracks in the ducts..

Prioritized repairs can be recommended if any of the tests performed yield less than passing results.  

Duct Leakage & Insulation
HVAC duct leakage can account for as much as 30% of a residential building's energy waste in the state of Maryland so any opportunity to home energy audit marylandproperly seal joints, holes and other cracks/crevices in the air ducts are important for an energy auditor to identify.  A Maryland home energy audit will include an HVAC duct inspection to identify leakage locations and prescribe treatment. 

Home Performance with Energy Star Contractor

Missing insulation can decrease overall insulation effectiveness & add to comfort issues

Thermal Boundary Investigation

A home energy audit will include a thorough investigation of the entire "envelope" of your Maryland home.  This means that the auditor will inspect the insulation effectiveness in all of the areas around the home where insulation is required.  During that process, ideas will be developed about cost effective ways to improve the situation wherever an opportunity presents.

A highly trained auditor will appropriately describe the techniques in which improvements to the thermal boundary will be made.  An energy auditor will also consider the whole-house approach to offering solutions including considering attic ventilation and what current system is in place, how the system could be improved and in some cases how the system can be integrated into the overall solution if none presently exists.

Most homes have some form of a thermal boundary in place.  Insulation usually exists in some form in all of the important places, however more than 50% of the homes in Maryland are insufficiently insulated. 

Air Barrier Assessment
Critical to a properly conducted home energy audit is an investigation for an air barrier or pressure boundary.  A properly installed pressure boundary typically only exists in about ten percent of the homes in Maryland - therefore there is a very good chance you do not have an air barrier.  Insulation is not nearly as effective as it states on the package unless there is an air barrier in place.  It is critical to stop the flow of air for insulation to work properly.  An auditor can take note of this during the inspecting and recommend ways to introduce an air barrier to the existing insulation and before adding any new insualtion.

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Missing Air Barrier

Energy Auditor Maryland

Proper Air Sealing

Home energy audit blower door testing Maryland

Blower door testing is a great way to find air leakage points around a house

Blower Door Test

Air barriers throughout a house are tested during a home energy audit Maryland blower door test and it is not uncommon for many of them to fail.  The higher the measurement of the airflow the sensor in the blower door fan reads, the larger the leakage area around the house. 

For every cubic foot of air that leaves the house through the fan at the door during a blower door test a cubic foot of air replaces it from all of the home energy audit marylandholes and cracks in the foundation, walls, ceiling, inefficient windows and doors as well as many other places around the home that you may not be aware are connected to the outside. Once the test is running and the sensor is connected to the meter for pressure and air flow readings, it is best to walk around the home with an energy auditor and perform a physical inspection to find air leakage and determine the most effective treatment for the problem. 

A blower door test as part of a comprehensive energy audit is the "icing on the cake".  

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    Specialized Maryland Contractor
    • MHIC Licensed
    • Building Analyst Certified
    • Envelope Professional Certification
    • EPA Lead Renovator Certified

    Hometrust Remodeling is a licensed contractor specializing in a whole-house approach to home remodeling with an emphasis on educating our customers, providing energy efficient solutions, maintaining a network of high caliber technicians and using building science principles.  As a result, we can effectively guide Maryland homeowners towards projects that satisfy comfort needs, aesthetics and value.

    Service Areas

    Calvert County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Prince George's County

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    North Laurel, MD 20723
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