"Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." — Gro Harlem Brundtland
Vermont Foam Insulation is partnered with an independent energy auditor who provides customers with enrollment in the Home Performance with Energy Star program (HPwES). This program is administered by Efficiency Vermont.
What is an energy audit?
An energy audit is a comprehensive examination of the function of the building as it related to the production and retainage of energy.
Benefits of an Energy Audit
First and foremost is the health and safety of the occupants of the building. An audit includes crucial testing of combustion equipment to ensure satisfactory performance, both before and after the subsequent insulation work. This testing of equipment provides customers with critical information about home performance such as making sure that the building heating plant does not backdraft carbon monoxide.
In addition, the evaluation of the building’s tightness using a blower door test helps to highlight areas of the building envelope that leak air. This helps to determine where the greatest gains can be made for energy efficiency improvements.
Why Choose VFI to conduct Your Energy Audit
Our goal is to provide our customers with the greatest possible value for their investment. For VFI, this means maximizing the ratio of rebate dollars to insulation costs. We often recommend this avenue to our customers, and those that do so, are then eligible for cash rebates that can equal as much as $2500. Over the history of the company, VFI has completed over 600 of home performance jobs. This resulted in over $550,000 in cash rebates that has been provided to our customers.
We engage our customers with the intention of not having any up front costs, so prefer to recommend free site evaluations first and then recommend an energy audit only after the site visit validates the need for an audit. Our past customers have responded particularly well to this method as it does not incur initial upfront financial cost. In the event that an audit makes sense and a customer decides to move forward with our service. As a general rule-of-thumb, we find that the rebate often equals about 10% of the total installation costs, with some obvious variabilities.
Commercial Build Energy Audits
This program is known as Building Performance with Energy Star (BPwES) - For small business and rental owners, municipal and commercial buildings, a similar program to Home Performance with Energy Star is available for those consider efficiency upgrades. Building owners are eligible for up to $5000 in cash rebates for air sealing and insulating. Vermont Foam has completed several commercial style projects for its customers over the years.
An energy audit is a unique service that utilizes advanced diagnostic equipment and the skills of a certified auditor to better understand the thermal performance of your home as well as your heating plant and distribution system. A major component of all our diagnostic site visits is a blower-door test. Use of this powerful fan requires some homeowner cooperation and preparation.
All VFI auditors are Building Performance Institute certified home energy auditors. Additionally, VFI is a partner in the Home Performance with Energy Star program through Efficiency Vermont.
There is a simple chain of events that takes place in order for you to receive a rebate from Efficiency Vermont. You, as the customer, can start the ball rolling by filling out this form. In response to that, we will schedule the audit test-in. After you have decided to move forward with the efficiency upgrades and the work is completed, we then schedule a subsequent test-out. About four weeks after the test-out, you can expect to receive a check in the mail.
The rebate is broken into two categories: 1) Air infiltration & 2) Square Footage. The tighter we make the building, the more money you will receive. The more area we upgrade, the more money you will get back. The first category, air infiltration, is broken down into subcategories. 10% or great reduction, 20% or greater reduction and 35% or greater reduction in air infiltration all dictate how much money you get back. Once our insulation and air sealing work is completed we will return to your building to perform a "test-out" to verify the reduction in air infiltration. We submit all this information on your behalf to Efficiency Vermont. Once you have completed the audit test-in, the insulation/air sealing work and the test-out, you will receive a correspondence from Efficiency Vermont. It will contain a document that you must print, sign and return to Efficiency Vermont. Without this document, you will NOT receive your rebate. After the test-out please be on the lookout for this letter!
Not everyone receives a report. For those that pay an additional fee for a written report, we make every effort to get you your report as quickly as possible. We should have you your report within 10 business days. Otherwise, we consider our proposal for work to be an alternative to providing a written report.
In the event that you are unable to be present, or do not wish to be – we can complete the audit without you present. Rest assured that we will treat your home with the utmost respect and leave it as clean as we found it. Of course collaboration with the homeowner is a critical step in the audit process. A sit-down discussion will precede the diagnostic testing and a brief discussion of the auditor’s findings is possible before he leaves. The more that the auditor is able to move through your home in a systematic manner, the greater the likelihood that nothing will be overlooked.
Typically an audit will take about 3-hours to complete. Obviously the size and complexity of the building will affect how long we are on site. Typically, an audit test-out is slightly quicker.