After meeting with project stakeholders, Lightly Treading will propose a plan that will include the services necessary to meet your goals. Our continually expanding specialties include:
ENERGY STAR® V3.0 Certification
ENERGY STAR® Multi-Family High RiseEnterprise Green Communities
EPA Indoor airPLUS®
NAHB’s Green Building Standard
NetZero Design Consulting
Passive House Consulting
Energy Bill Guarantee Programs
Remodels with enhanced energy performance
Comprehensive computer modeling from architectural plans will project a home’s, multifamily or commercial building’s energy performance and determine how to meet your performance goals as well as 2015 IECC/ASHRAE 90.-2013 and other jurisdictional requirements. This allows you to have design details and specifications in-place before construction begins, saving you money.
Gain assurance early on that home specifications will meet your performance goals and requirements.
ASHRAE Level I Commercial Energy Audit: This energy audit includes a consultation with select staff, a visual inspection (walk-through) of the building, benchmarking of the building’s utility bills, and collecting a sample of the building’s lighting. The goal for this audit is to visually identify areas of energy waste or inefficiency. This service includes a written report of energy-efficiency issues and recommended next steps which may include additional testing and inspections and/or direct improvement recommendations.
ASHRAE Level II Commercial Energy Audit: Service as described above with the addition of building science envelope inspections and tests: an air-tightness (blower door) test with IR camera scanning for air-leakage and insulation issues, HVAC system(s) diagnostics including water heaters, and a complete building lighting survey to identify energy and comfort issues.
ASHRAE Level III Commercial Energy Audit: Service as described above (ASHRAE Level II) with the addition of a more detailed field data gathering and OptiMiser (or comparable software) commercial modeling of the building(s). This provides a realistic baseline to provide comprehensive cost/benefit data on energy and operating savings from recommended improvements to be made to your building(s). This level of detail provides the confidence required for major capital investments.
These inspections are performed before drywall is hung to verify quality of air sealing, insulation, and air duct sealing. This allows for issues to be identified while they are easy to access and repair.
Lightly Treading’s pre-drywall inspections will target issues while they are still easy to access and repair. Depending upon your project we will work with you to select which of the following inspections are needed. Lightly Treading Energy Raters will notify the builder and/or appropriate trade partner of any areas in need of improvement immediately, so repairs can be efficiently addressed without affecting your production schedule.
Lightly Treading will meet with framer, air-sealing contractor, and builder to be sure code and/or ENERGY STAR® requirements are understood. LT will inspect the project after fire caulking and all other air sealing measures you intend to do have been installed. The purpose of this inspection is to identify sources of air-leakage prior to wall & ceiling insulation installation in order to ensure the project will pass IECC and/or ENERGY STAR® stringent air-tightness requirements during the final blower door test.
Walk through inspection ensures that performance details of insulation and air-sealing are correct before the drywall is hung. Effective insulation and air sealing details are key to ensuring a high performance home.
Inspections for “grade” (1, 2 or 3 levels of installation) while insulation corrections can be easily made; and completion of the Rater Field Checklist (as required for any projects seeking ENERGY STAR® certification).
Our inspectors are thorough and detail-oriented to ensure you are meeting if not exceeding standards. The required checklist for ENERGY STAR® certification with the assistance of the HVAC company and builder will be filled out and saved for completion at the final inspection.
FRAME STAGE DUCT LEAKAGE TESTING
Measured pressurization of duct systems before drywall is hung will help determine if ducts are adequately sealed as well as assure that there are no disconnected or poorly connected ducts while they are easy to access and repair. Ensuring an effective delivery of heating and air conditioning is a key component to a comfortable and efficient home.
Lightly Treading Energy Raters will immediately notify HVAC contractors of duct systems found to be performing poorly.
Depending upon your performance goals, Lightly Treading can perform verification inspections and checklists for various national certification programs including: ENERGY STAR®, EPA WaterSense®, and EPA Indoor airPLUS®.
Lightly Treading staff and RESNET Raters are knowledgeable about the eligibility requirements for the following certification programs. Should you choose to enroll a home in any of these programs, Lightly Treading will assist with completing and submitting the necessary verification checklists. If there is a program you are interested in that is not listed, please contact us, and we will do our best to work with you in achieving your goals.
ENERGY STAR verification ensures that new homes are built with the environment and inhabitants in mind, by achieving lower utility bills and enhanced comfort. Not only does this program strive for a comprehensive approach to promote comfort, quality and durability, but it also exceeds many adopted Local Energy Codes. An ENERGY STAR rated home requires completion of the Thermal Enclosure, HVAC Systems and Water Management checklists. The Lightly Treading team can assist at the beginning of the design phase or later during construction to help your home attain ENERGY STAR certification. It is recommended that we begin work with you as early in the construction and design process as possible.
You can learn more about ENERGY STAR here.
WaterSense is an EPA Partnership Program that has been saving water through marketplace product monitoring and newly constructed home certification programs. WaterSense partners with manufactures, retailers and distributors to bring water efficient products to the general marketplace. Your home can be designated as a WaterSense home by a RESNET Rater in as little as two hours if design criteria have been met. Such criteria include performance testing to ensure proper flow rates, low water temperature conversion, and adherence to specifications for appliances as well as adherence to design measures regarding landscaping and irrigation systems.
You can learn more about EPA WaterSense here.
EPA Indoor airPLUS®
Indoor airPLUS was created by the EPA to help builders meet a consumer preference for high efficiency homes with improved air quality. As you know, tightening the home’s envelope adds significant energy efficiency, but it also reduces the air exchange through the building shell. This can contribute to pollutant buildup inside homes, as well as mold and moisture problems. These can be avoided, however, by integrating indoor air quality protections with energy efficiency measures. Indoor airPLUS Construction Specificationsinclude prevention measures addressing moisture control, HVAC system design and balancing, combustion pollutants, and pollutants associated with the off-gassing of building materials. Including Indoor airPLUS in your plan will show your customers that you not only care about reducing utility costs, but also care about their health and well-being.
You can learn more about EPA Indoor airPLUS here.
Inspection of a completed project verifies that performance levels have been met as expected and no details have been overlooked.
After the final inspections you can be assured of the actual energy performance of your project. The Final Inspection includes the following components:
FINAL PERFORMANCE TESTING OF A HOME, UNIT, OR COMMERCIAL BUILDING COMPONENTS
Performance testing of a home, Unit or Commercial building after completion ensures that installations are meeting expectations. Testing includes:
COMPLETION OF THERMAL ENCLOSURE CHECKLIST (If applicable)
Final details of the ENERGY STAR Rater Field Checklist started during the pre-drywall inspection are completed.
CONFIRMED MODELING & CALCULATIONS
Comprehensive energy modeling integrates all details of the final inspection results to verify completed project meets minimum performance requirements under IECC and other performance goals. This modeling verifies the performance levels against the initial Projected Energy modeling and/or calculations. If applicable, a final HERs score and performance summary of the home is generated.
PAPERWORK SUBMITTAL TO INCENTIVE AND CERTIFICATION PROGRAMS
Lightly Treading will complete and submit paperwork for eligible projects to predetermined certification or incentive programs as confirmed with builder at time of contract and performance goals meeting. Learn more about various certification programs by clicking here.
Lightly Treading is here to work with you as you attempt to push the envelope and achieve advanced home performance with goals such as Passive House, Zero Energy Ready, or Solar applications. We can provide detailed consultations concerning building specifications and performance to help you achieve a home with truly unique energy performance. Contact us today to tell us about your project.