AmeriCorps Works AmeriCorps Week – Energy Audit – The Energy Coordinating Agency – PA

This is from Matthew Dahlhausen, serving with The Energy Coordinating Agency in Pennsylvania.

Matt writes:

“I handle program support, quality assurance and management for the EnergyWorks program. The daily expression of this is providing tech support for the 20+ auditors in the network, tracking all the audits they do, and making sure every report that comes through (25/week) is up to standard.  When I started, I found that at best, 10% of the reports coming in had monthly utility bills that were matched to within 10% of the model.  This meant the model wasn’t predicting energy savings for proposed or completed improvements as accurately as it could, and EnergyWorks had to use well known estimates for  “deemed savings”.  This wasn’t necessarily anyone’s fault, they just didn’t have the capacity to put work into modeling.  The first thing I did was require that all reports coming in had to be matched to within 10% of energy bills.  I soon found myself providing 3-4hrs of tech support to auditors each day, and quickly realized I wouldn’t be able to meet any of my goals if I spent that much time on tech support.  I made several go-to-first resources like the Recurve True-Up Flowchart (attached) for truing energy models to utility bills. Now I only do 3-4 hrs of tech support per week, and 90% of the reports coming in are to standard.

I also handle all of the quality assurance checks; we check on every completed retrofit in the program.  I personally do 1-2 per week, and assign the rest out to our auditor network.  I model each home that comes through the program to get an idea of how much they are going to save, so when a test out auditor goes to a house, they can give the customer an educated estimated of savings.  During my test outs, I do a blower door test, walk around the house with the homeowner using an IR camera to highlight any further work to be done, and then do any combustion testing needed.  It’s not a full audit, but pretty close.  I try to focus on getting the homeowner excited about further work and letting them know how they can do work themselves.”

AmeriCorps Works AmeriCorps Week – Residential Energy Efficiency – The Energy Coordination Agency – PA
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