In our previous article, we discussed the process of applying for the Weatherization Assistance Program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). This article will discuss what actually happens if you’re fortunate enough to get approved.
The first step is for your state weatherization agency to perform an energy audit on your home. The audit will be performed by either a trained home energy services contractor, a local government agency or a nonprofit weatherization organization.
The purpose of the energy audit is to assess your home’s energy use. Professional auditors will analyze your energy bills and perform a pressurized blower-door test to measure the infiltration of outside air into your home. Finally, the auditor will inspect all of your in-home energy equipment for health and safety purposes.
Once the audit is completed, the auditor will provide you with a list of recommendations outlining the most energy efficient conservation measures for your home.
Based on the recommendations suggested by the auditor, work crews will be hired to perform the actual work. The auditor will sit down with your family to discuss what the crews will be doing and an estimate of how long the work will take. Depending on the auditor’s recommendations, some homes may take longer than others to complete the required work.
Any and all work performed by the work crews will be energy-conservation related. However, this does not include new siding, roofing or other types of similar structural improvements. The average cost per home to perform all recommended updates is around $6,500 and the work is typically completed within two days. Once the work is done you will sign off on the final inspection.
Health and safety of your family is the primary concern during the entire weatherization process. Yes, the number one goal is to make your home as energy efficient as possible to help lower your monthly energy costs. But the health and safety of your family is just as important.
After the work crews have finished, an inspector will return to make sure that all related equipment is operating properly and safely and that nothing in the process was missed.