ecoENERGY Report – Part 22 – Final EnerGuide Rating

Approximately 6 weeks after the second or ‘E’ Energy Efficiency Assessment (i.e. energy audit), we received the final ‘package’ from the accredited ecoENERGY assessors.

It wasn’t much of a report. Why?

Well, we already knew which energy conservation home improvements were eligible for ecoENERGY grants. In fact, at the end of these second, or ‘E’ energy audit, you need to sign a couple of forms acknowledging this.

So, as we wrote about previously we did not achieve the 10% reduction in air leakage.

The only grant we were eligible for was the $30 Federal + $30 Provincial grants for each ENERGY STAR replacement window.

With the March 30, 2009 announcement of a 25% increase in ecoENERGY grants, we don’t know if we will receive $30 + $30, or if we will receive the increased grant amount of $37.50 ($30 X 1/25) + $37.50  per ENERGY STAR rated replacement window.

Time will tell.

What we do know with certainty, however, is our home’s final EnerGuide rating.

As we wrote about back in January of 2008, the first energy audit of the program resulted in the following EnerGuide rating for our home:

energuide rating ecoENERGY Report   Part 22   Final EnerGuide Rating

According to the report from the first energy audit:

  • 66 is the average EnerGuide rating for a house of our home’s age (22 years old) in Canada
  • 70 represented the present EnerGuide rating for our home at the time of the first energy audit
  • 80 represents the rating our house could achieve if we follow all of the evaluator’s recommendations in the report

Here is what we received in the mail from the energy efficiency assessor last week following the second energy audit: 

energuide rating e energy audit 1 ecoENERGY Report   Part 22   Final EnerGuide Rating

This was surprising. Our assessor indicated that there was no change in the air leakage and thought that the rating would be the same. The ecoENERGY web site defines the EnerGuide rating for a home as primarily the results of the blower test, the one that calculates air leakage.

So, it would appear that our prior efforts to reduce the air leakage, including the new windows, at least had some benefit, i.e. an increase in the EnerGuide rating for our home from 70 to 72.

And, remember all those air leaks which the assessor showed us only during the second energy audit? Now that we know, we can tighten up the house a little more, which will save money through reduced home heating in the winter and home cooling (air conditioning) in the summer.

Next time, we’ll let you know when we receive the Federal and then the Provincial grants. It should be in a couple of months. It will be interesting to see if we do or do not receive the increased grant amounts from either of these levels of government

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Comments

  1. Vasile says:

    According to my report, the rating is a sum of points. In my case, replacing 3 windows=1.2 pts, replacing the furnace=8 pts, attic insulation = 1.4pts, air sealing = 1.4 pts and so on.

    However, if I add all the points, the result is much higher than he says it would be if I implement all the changes :-) ))

  2. Dan says:

    Hi Vasile,

    I could be completely incorrect, but I would challenge that calculation.

    We replaced, according to the ecoENERGY definition,12 windows which per the above would have seen our EnerGuide rating increase by 12 / 3 X 1.2 = 4.8 points, yet our rating increased only by 2 points.

    Still stuff within the program that is confusing to me (and I think to most people).

    Dan

  3. Nova says:

    I noticed in your report that the auditor advised you consult with a professional air-sealing contractor, did you seek out a contractor. I know for us it wasn’t easy to find at first. It is not like you can do it yourself and ‘know’ you have achieved the target without having a blower door on hand. As a homeowner, how would I know I achieved the air-sealing target? I did find a contractor from ecoseal who not only would come into the home and perform the work (air sealing) but would also guarantee we will get the air seal grants. They performed the blower door test along with an infrared scan of the house, the infrared camera really highlighted areas not pointed out during the first eco evaluation.
    They found air leakage sources from normal areas window doors etc, but the amazing ones were the basement headers, which leaked big time, the openings through that basement header for hydro, air conditioning and dryer. They also pointed out a few things they themselves could not repair but will help tighten the house much more; the kitchen exhaust damper was stuck open because the spring had broken and the previous owners had removed the bathroom exhaust damper. Then went about there business caulking, spray foaming and putting on door seals. After they were complete, they did the door test again to verify we had reached our target. The best part about this was what we got back in grant money ($300) it only cost us $350.00 to have them perform the work. So for $50.00 they did all the work (2hrs) provided all the materials and guaranteed the rebate. As for the energy savings, only time will tell but I feel I noticed a difference this year in the house.

  4. Keith says:

    Very interesting read. The article mentions replacing an external door, but no mention of a grant for it at the end. Was this due to the fact that it was not eligible due to not being on the “list of recommendations”?

  5. Dan says:

    Hi Keith,

    Thanks for the comment.

    The reason for no grant re the new external door was that the door, embarassingly, was not an ENERGY STAR door. We (myself and the Mrs.) fell head over heals with a paricular door which, while not ENERGY STAR rated, was already sufficiently expensive that the $30 + $30 was not going to make a diffrence. As well, the blower test does not take the old or new door into account because the door is wide open for the blower test’s fan. Yet, because the original door was so poorly fitted with lots of cold air entering the house we knew that it would still be saving us money because of the elimination of the air leaks.

    FYI, we have just started to write about the 2 year results of the ecoENERGY program. If interested, you can access the first article here:

    http://dailyhomerenotips.com/2009/04/19/ecoenergy-2-year-anniversary-results-part-1-participation/

    Dan

  6. jloo says:

    great detailed posts. Many thanks…. I also was wondering when i got my final audit in January 2009, if i would be eligiable for the 25% increase that was annouced to be effective March 30, 2009 since i did not recieve any payments to date. I sent an email to the feds with my concerns, only to hear back that the new rate is only when the final audit takes place, not when grant payment is made… we shall see when i get my grant, it’s been 5 months waiting so far….

  7. Dan says:

    Hi J Loo,

    5 months and no ecoENERGY Residential Retrofit grant cheque yet? I suggest you contest back the firm who performed our E energy efficiency assessment. We had our E energy efficiency assessment performed in early February of this year and received our Federal grant cheque in early May, i.e. 3 months.

    Yes, we did not receive the 25% increase either.

    Timing is everying, or nothing in life!

    Dan

  8. Andrea says:

    Dan,
    We had our initial audit in April 2009, completed ALL reno’s on our 130 year old home – we gutted it down to the original wide boards. We had the foundation, all walls and attic spray foamed, all new energy start windows and doors, the contractors put vapour barrier on the inside walls and siliconed all seals….. the house appears to be good and tight. Our initial audit resulted in a score of 69% (old windows, “some insulation”, lots of leakage) our final assessment was done at the end of Jan 2010 and I just received the disappointing result of 75%. I am just not sure how this is possible? We haven’t received the grant money yet and are not sure if the score will affect eligibility or not. Any thought?
    Cheers,
    Andrea

  9. Dan says:

    Hi Andrea,

    Without seeing the full original energy efficiency assessement report, it is really hard for me to comment.

    However, here’s a few thoughts:

    1. Even though you did a lot of renovations, did you follow the assessor during the D assessment to identify all areas of air leaks? We didn’t as we wrote about until the second time when it was too late for the report (but not too late to do something about it).

    2. if you have any recessed ceiling lights, is the part of the ‘pot’ on top of the ceiling sufficiently air sealed? Our contractor said he did but the assessor said no.

    3. you do not mention attic insulation…did you upgrade that?

    4. part of the scoring of homes is the age as we have found out …. really old (comparatively) homes such as yours have a bias against them because while the inside was gutted and ENERGY STAR windows were used as replacements, the assessment considers the outside, foundation, etc. to be inefficient energy wise.

    In sum, I wouldn’t worry too much about the final number. As long as you receive the grants for the eligible retrofits and you see significant reductions in your energy gills then to me that is the final verdict.

    Dan

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