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Homeowners Invited to Undergo Student-Led Energy Audits

auditStudents in the Renewable Energy Technologies course are looking for homes in which to perform energy audits, identify energy-saving measures and recommend renewable systems. To qualify, a home must be a freestanding single-family dwelling. Students will come to the house and evaluate it as part of their course requirements. They will produce a report that will document how airtight the home is and where it leaks air, recommend ways in which energy use and comfort can be improved, and show how renewable energy (photovoltaic and solar thermal systems) can be integrated. Those interested in volunteering their homes are asked to email Dorothy J. Gerring, associate professor of architectural technology, and include an address, phone number and email. What secrets does your house keep?  The students will find out using a blower door test and infrared thermal imaging. The images above show the corner/ceiling of a client’s bedroom: on the left is what it actually looks like; on the right is a thermal image.  The images were taken on a cold winter day, so the interior of the house was warm (yellow colors in second image) and the places where there is missing or compromised insulation in the ceiling and air infiltration on walls are cold (which shows as blue in the right-hand photo). “My husband, Jeff, and I were pleased to have our home chosen by a team of two students for the energy audit,” said Kimberly M. Antion, secretary to the School of Construction & Design Technologies. “The students conducted themselves very professionally while in our home.  They explained what they were going to do and asked questions of my husband and me when necessary.  The blower-door test produced some startling results that Jeff and I are now in the process of remediating. We are both glad that we had this energy audit done on our home. It will not only save us energy dollars, but also contribute to reducing the carbon footprint.”

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