7 Steps of Building a Synergy Home 
(click on the screen to watch our video)
The Importance of Energy Audits 
Powerpoint Presentation
There are essentially 7 Steps to Achieving a 
“Synergy Home” 
• Airtight Construction 
• Fresh Air Ventilation 
• Improved...
An energy audit is a 
comprehensive examination of 
your home and its systems using 
diagnostic tools and equipment.
Why an energy audit? 
• High utility bills. 
• Identifying and correcting unresolved issues. 
• It helps to determine if e...
Don’t assume your brand new 
home is performing properly just 
because it is new and built to code. 
Building codes requir...
We oftentimes test new homes and 
find fatal flaws that can easily be 
corrected that would have otherwise 
go undetected.
Home inspections 
• Are a prerequisite for buying a home. 
• Are not energy audits 
• Are rarely performed using complex d...
Why you should use Synergy Home 
Performance LLC as your auditor 
• We have 4 Building Performance Institute Certified (BP...
We prefer that you follow us 
around during your audit and ask 
plenty of questions. We want you 
to have a good understan...
Within a few days, we provide you 
with a detailed Energy 
Performance Score (EPS) report 
prioritizing the issues we find...
The tools of an energy auditor 
• Extensive knowledge, training, and experience. 
• Building Performance Institute Certifi...
We start the audit by interviewing 
you and addressing any questions 
or concerns.
Next, we perform a blower door test. 
A blower door pulls air out of your 
home and helps us identify the specific 
leakag...
We measure and draw out your 
home on graph paper. We then 
calculate the volume of your home 
and by using the cubic feet...
Many auditors, in an effort to save 
time, and due to their inability to 
locate the thermal barrier, only 
report the air...
Notice the sheetrock dust pulled in 
under the sill plates on this spray 
foamed, slab home when blower 
door testing was ...
Without testing and with only a 
visual inspection, how do you 
locate air leakage sites? Our 
energy auditing helps us to...
Common air leakage sites 
• Attic pull-down stairs and attic access doors 
located inside of the conditioned space. 
• Rec...
The infrared camera is used in 
conjunction with the blower door to 
help locate air leaks, un-insulated 
areas, and moist...
We also use the manometer in 
conjunction with the blower door 
to determine the connectivity 
between the house and the a...
We visually inspect your 
crawlspace and attic. How many 
other energy auditing companies 
provide this service?
We use a manometer to confirm that there 
is a 3 Pascal or less pressure differential 
between a bedroom and the main body...
Providing proper return airflow is one of the best and 
least expensive ways to improve a home’s comfort and 
performance....
Installing returns, jumper ducts, or transfer 
grilles in all bedrooms so that the air has a 
return path if the doors are...
We use the flow hood to measure bathroom fan 
exhausts. We often get readings of “0” although the 
fan appears to be worki...
We are yet to test a home without at 
least one bathroom exhaust fan 
improperly installed.
This exhaust duct was completely 
disconnected. Without testing, how 
would you know?
We visually inspect to make sure 
clothes dryer and kitchen exhausts 
are working and exhausting 
properly.
For every cubic foot of air that exits 
a home through exhaust fans, 
chimneys, and air leaks, a cubic foot 
of air must b...
We are then able to provide you 
with cost-effective fresh air 
ventilation strategies.
We also use the manometer to 
static pressure test HVAC systems 
on all of our energy audits. The 
static pressure of your...
High static pressure is the 
equivalent of high blood pressure 
and it indicates low airflow.
71.8 + 234 = 305.8 / 250 = 1.22 
IWC. 
1.22 IWC should be 0.5 IWC 
This unit is having a stroke!
Smart systems display the static 
pressure on the thermostat as well 
as the cubic feet per minute of 
airflow.
We double check the return side 
airflow with a flowhood or hotwire 
anemometer.
We compare the actual airflow to 
the rated airflow of the HVAC 
system.
A typical HVAC system requires 
approximately 400 cubic feet per 
minute of airflow per 1 ton of 
heating and cooling. For...
In units with high static pressure, 
the rated 2000 cfm of airflow is 
often found to be 1000 - 1200 cfm. 
Where is the ot...
We actually started out offering airflow 
diagnostics and air balancing but most 
times the total system airflow was in ne...
In the earlier picture of the 
“smart” thermostat, notice that 
the delivered cfm was 1957cfm. 
Smart systems attempt to 
...
Note that when the work of the 
HVAC fan motor is decreased, the 
amp draw is reduced by a factor of 
3. Similarly, when t...
We open up your HVAC unit and 
inspect it thoroughly.
We check your speed taps or dip 
switches to make sure they are 
properly set.
Energy efficiency programs are 
paying for duct blaster testing and 
duct sealing while failing to require 
static pressur...
Many high static systems with 
extremely low airflow pass duct 
blaster tests with flying colors.
Duct sealing properly sized and 
designed HVAC systems provide 
energy savings.
Duct sealing improperly sized, 
designed, and installed HVAC 
systems cause increased static 
pressure which leads to low ...
We offer duct-blaster testing but we 
do not believe it provides much useful 
information. However, it is required 
by the...
We use Right-Suite Universal to size 
and design Heating, Ventilation, and 
Air Conditioning systems.
See 
“The HVAC Design Customer 
Questionnaire” and our full size 
HVAC Design example.
Temperature Diagnostics 
We measure temperature drops 
across the “system” along with 
airflow to determine “system 
effic...
Measuring temperature drops 
across the equipment doesn’t tell 
us much, especially if the airflow is 
low and the ducts a...
It is all about “system efficiency” 
and delivered Btu’s. “Equipment 
efficiency” measured in a 
laboratory under ideal co...
So why is low airflow bad? 
• Comfort requires proper airflow in order to 
supply and return the right amount of air at 
t...
Don’t waste your time on an 
energy audit that doesn’t measure 
airflow and static pressure.
The problem with “free energy 
audits” offered by local utilities 
• A clipboard and a checklist are not diagnostic tools ...
Notice the worthless electrical 
outlet covers that TVA sends out to 
people.
Local utility companies don’t have 
incentives to reduce your energy 
usage despite what their 
marketing department tells...
Motorized attic fans are one of the 
biggest problems in homes. Unless 
the home is perfectly sealed, 
motorized attic fan...
Beware of “free energy audit 
offers” by unscrupulous companies 
attempting to sell you products 
such as radiant barriers...
We offer combustion testing and 
carbon monoxide testing and we sell 
high grade carbon monoxide monitors. 
Notice the CO ...
We offer moisture meter measurements 
and we sell hygrothermometers with 
remote sensors that display both the 
humidity a...
Call us at (256) 616-2264 for more 
info on energy audits. TVA rebates 
are available.
Energy audits by Synergy
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Energy audits by Synergy

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Home energy audits are needed to ensure that your home performs. Don't waste money on energy efficient upgrades until having an energy audit performed.

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  • Many
  • Divide the leakage in cfm’s by 1000 and you get a good estimate of the amount of leakage in square footage. For example, 3500cfm / 1000 = approximately 3 ½ sf of air leaks.
  • Notice the static is 1.04.
  • Manufacturers are now starting to send out factory tech’s to measure static pressure before replacing motors.
  • See one of our HVAC designs
  • This shows the advantages of locating the ducts inside of the conditioned space and the efficiency loss due to ducts
  • It is similar to testing R-value in a laboratory setting
  • Energy audits by Synergy

    1. 1. 7 Steps of Building a Synergy Home (click on the screen to watch our video)
    2. 2. The Importance of Energy Audits Powerpoint Presentation
    3. 3. There are essentially 7 Steps to Achieving a “Synergy Home” • Airtight Construction • Fresh Air Ventilation • Improved Thermal Systems • Properly Sized, Designed, Installed, and Commissioned HVAC System • Pressure Balanced • Moisture Managed • Combustion Safety
    4. 4. An energy audit is a comprehensive examination of your home and its systems using diagnostic tools and equipment.
    5. 5. Why an energy audit? • High utility bills. • Identifying and correcting unresolved issues. • It helps to determine if energy efficient upgrades are needed and the return on investment of those upgrades. • Comfort issues such as rooms that are too hot, too cold, or too drafty. • Indoor air quality issues. • Moisture issues in your home or crawlspace. • Durability issues. • General knowledge of your home and its systems. • Commissioning / Synergizing a new home and its systems.
    6. 6. Don’t assume your brand new home is performing properly just because it is new and built to code. Building codes require bare minimums and do not address the system as a whole.
    7. 7. We oftentimes test new homes and find fatal flaws that can easily be corrected that would have otherwise go undetected.
    8. 8. Home inspections • Are a prerequisite for buying a home. • Are not energy audits • Are rarely performed using complex diagnostic tools. • Typically involve only visual inspections and visual inspections rarely confirm that the HVAC system is operating properly. • Many times issues in hard to inspect areas such as the crawlspace are simply ignored. • Are performed by inspectors that are recommended by the real estate agent. Conflict of interests can happen. • Home inspectors generate much of their work from referrals and referrals are generated by making sales easier to close. • Deserve a 2nd opinion. • Buyers expect the costs to repair items that are found to be deducted from the sales price. • Home inspection companies are not liable for anything in excess of their home-inspection fee.
    9. 9. Why you should use Synergy Home Performance LLC as your auditor • We have 4 Building Performance Institute Certified (BPI) Auditors on staff and we have performed over 2000 energy audits. • We have a HERS rater on staff. • Our energy audits are very detailed and generally take 3 to 6 hours. • We have a State of Alabama HVAC license. • We have a State of Alabama Homebuilders license. • We offer energy audits, spray foam installation, air sealing packages, traditional insulation, closed crawlspace construction installation, HVAC Design Services, and energy efficient building consulting.
    10. 10. We prefer that you follow us around during your audit and ask plenty of questions. We want you to have a good understanding of your home and its systems because more than likely, its the biggest investment you will ever make.
    11. 11. Within a few days, we provide you with a detailed Energy Performance Score (EPS) report prioritizing the issues we find in your home. Pictures are included.
    12. 12. The tools of an energy auditor • Extensive knowledge, training, and experience. • Building Performance Institute Certified. • Blower door. • Infrared camera. • Manometer. • Flow hood or hot wire anemometer. • Thermometer. • Moisture meter. • Duct blaster. • Carbon monoxide detectors. • Graph paper and tape measure. • Digital camera.
    13. 13. We start the audit by interviewing you and addressing any questions or concerns.
    14. 14. Next, we perform a blower door test. A blower door pulls air out of your home and helps us identify the specific leakage areas.
    15. 15. We measure and draw out your home on graph paper. We then calculate the volume of your home and by using the cubic feet per minute of air leakage we are able to calculate the air changes per hour.
    16. 16. Many auditors, in an effort to save time, and due to their inability to locate the thermal barrier, only report the air leakage in cubic feet per minute. Leakage of 1000 cfm in a 2000 sf home with 8ft ceilings is much different than a 10,000 sf home with 10 ft ceilings and the same amount of leakage in cfm’s.
    17. 17. Notice the sheetrock dust pulled in under the sill plates on this spray foamed, slab home when blower door testing was performed.
    18. 18. Without testing and with only a visual inspection, how do you locate air leakage sites? Our energy auditing helps us to eliminate air leakage sites in new construction.
    19. 19. Common air leakage sites • Attic pull-down stairs and attic access doors located inside of the conditioned space. • Recessed cans and exhaust fans. • Framing shafts. • Fireplaces. • HVAC systems. • Sill plates. • Windows and doors. • Interior door latches.
    20. 20. The infrared camera is used in conjunction with the blower door to help locate air leaks, un-insulated areas, and moisture issues hidden in the walls, attic, crawlspace, basement, and slab foundations.
    21. 21. We also use the manometer in conjunction with the blower door to determine the connectivity between the house and the attic and the house and the crawlspace.
    22. 22. We visually inspect your crawlspace and attic. How many other energy auditing companies provide this service?
    23. 23. We use a manometer to confirm that there is a 3 Pascal or less pressure differential between a bedroom and the main body of the home when bedroom doors are closed.
    24. 24. Providing proper return airflow is one of the best and least expensive ways to improve a home’s comfort and performance. Returns should never be located in closets even with a louvered door. Use the most inexpensive, non-restrictive filters possible!
    25. 25. Installing returns, jumper ducts, or transfer grilles in all bedrooms so that the air has a return path if the doors are closed is mandatory. See Step 5 – Pressure Balancing for more info!
    26. 26. We use the flow hood to measure bathroom fan exhausts. We often get readings of “0” although the fan appears to be working correctly. Improper exhaust fan operation allows high interior moisture levels and indoor air quality issues.
    27. 27. We are yet to test a home without at least one bathroom exhaust fan improperly installed.
    28. 28. This exhaust duct was completely disconnected. Without testing, how would you know?
    29. 29. We visually inspect to make sure clothes dryer and kitchen exhausts are working and exhausting properly.
    30. 30. For every cubic foot of air that exits a home through exhaust fans, chimneys, and air leaks, a cubic foot of air must be pulled in to replace it. Typically, it enters from the nearest, biggest hole and it brings contaminants with it. We are able to locate the holes and seal them.
    31. 31. We are then able to provide you with cost-effective fresh air ventilation strategies.
    32. 32. We also use the manometer to static pressure test HVAC systems on all of our energy audits. The static pressure of your HVAC system is the equivalent to your blood pressure.
    33. 33. High static pressure is the equivalent of high blood pressure and it indicates low airflow.
    34. 34. 71.8 + 234 = 305.8 / 250 = 1.22 IWC. 1.22 IWC should be 0.5 IWC This unit is having a stroke!
    35. 35. Smart systems display the static pressure on the thermostat as well as the cubic feet per minute of airflow.
    36. 36. We double check the return side airflow with a flowhood or hotwire anemometer.
    37. 37. We compare the actual airflow to the rated airflow of the HVAC system.
    38. 38. A typical HVAC system requires approximately 400 cubic feet per minute of airflow per 1 ton of heating and cooling. For example, 5 tons of heating and cooling requires approximately 5 tons x 400 cfm = 2000 cfm.
    39. 39. In units with high static pressure, the rated 2000 cfm of airflow is often found to be 1000 - 1200 cfm. Where is the other air?
    40. 40. We actually started out offering airflow diagnostics and air balancing but most times the total system airflow was in need of correction. Keep in mind that proper airflow is required before refrigerant can be added.
    41. 41. In the earlier picture of the “smart” thermostat, notice that the delivered cfm was 1957cfm. Smart systems attempt to overcome high static pressure but the watt draw is excessive and eventually the motor will burn out.
    42. 42. Note that when the work of the HVAC fan motor is decreased, the amp draw is reduced by a factor of 3. Similarly, when the work is increased, the watt draw is increased by a factor of 3.
    43. 43. We open up your HVAC unit and inspect it thoroughly.
    44. 44. We check your speed taps or dip switches to make sure they are properly set.
    45. 45. Energy efficiency programs are paying for duct blaster testing and duct sealing while failing to require static pressure testing and airflow confirmation.
    46. 46. Many high static systems with extremely low airflow pass duct blaster tests with flying colors.
    47. 47. Duct sealing properly sized and designed HVAC systems provide energy savings.
    48. 48. Duct sealing improperly sized, designed, and installed HVAC systems cause increased static pressure which leads to low airflow, comfort issues, and premature compressor and fan motor failure.
    49. 49. We offer duct-blaster testing but we do not believe it provides much useful information. However, it is required by the 2009 IRC unless ducts are installed in the conditioned space.
    50. 50. We use Right-Suite Universal to size and design Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning systems.
    51. 51. See “The HVAC Design Customer Questionnaire” and our full size HVAC Design example.
    52. 52. Temperature Diagnostics We measure temperature drops across the “system” along with airflow to determine “system efficiency”.
    53. 53. Measuring temperature drops across the equipment doesn’t tell us much, especially if the airflow is low and the ducts are located in unconditioned spaces.
    54. 54. It is all about “system efficiency” and delivered Btu’s. “Equipment efficiency” measured in a laboratory under ideal conditions is unrealistic to field conditions.
    55. 55. So why is low airflow bad? • Comfort requires proper airflow in order to supply and return the right amount of air at the right temperature to the right room. • Premature compressor failure – frozen coils often result from low airflow. • Premature motor failure. • Cracked heat exchangers – Carbon Monoxide poisoning.
    56. 56. Don’t waste your time on an energy audit that doesn’t measure airflow and static pressure.
    57. 57. The problem with “free energy audits” offered by local utilities • A clipboard and a checklist are not diagnostic tools – keep in mind “We Test, Others Guess”. • How can you recommend air sealing when you don’t know exactly where the leaks are? • Attic insulation is oftentimes recommended without first air-sealing. • Traditional floor insulation is often recommended though it has been proven that it rarely works. • Changing out light bulbs is obvious. • You are actually paying for other’s “free” audits on your utility bill.
    58. 58. Notice the worthless electrical outlet covers that TVA sends out to people.
    59. 59. Local utility companies don’t have incentives to reduce your energy usage despite what their marketing department tells you!
    60. 60. Motorized attic fans are one of the biggest problems in homes. Unless the home is perfectly sealed, motorized attic fans pull conditioned air out of your home while consuming energy.
    61. 61. Beware of “free energy audit offers” by unscrupulous companies attempting to sell you products such as radiant barriers or HVAC systems.
    62. 62. We offer combustion testing and carbon monoxide testing and we sell high grade carbon monoxide monitors. Notice the CO detector purchased at a “Big box” retailer is showing “0” while ours is showing “17”.
    63. 63. We offer moisture meter measurements and we sell hygrothermometers with remote sensors that display both the humidity and temperature in the crawlspace as well as the home.
    64. 64. Call us at (256) 616-2264 for more info on energy audits. TVA rebates are available.

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