April 6, 2020

Athena Bi

Audit, a word that implies expertise, thoroughness, and accuracy, should be applauded… shouldn’t it? I used to work at a consulting company, working for supervisor with the title of “CAO”.  Before that job, I had no idea what the acronym “CAO” stood for.  I learned it’s short for Chief Audit Officer.  I also learned, that even the person with that title rarely sounded excited about conducting an audit. 

Should we call our energy audit an “assessment”?

Our initial thought was to avoid using the word “audit” because of its inherent troubling connotation. We instead decided to call the evaluation process an “assessment” because it offers a complete detailed analysis of all the energy consumption and usage patterns of the home or business. The “assessment” report also tells you where to save utility expenses and how. If your organization follows through with the advice offered in the assessment report, we guarantee the resulting savings estimates. Personally, I believe our energy audit is too good to be called an assessment. Here is why.

Our Energy Audit Program

Let’s take one kind of Energy Audit offered by Energize Delaware as an example – the Energy Audit for Non-profit Organizations. 90% of the cost is covered by Energize Delaware, and the audit is provided by the Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) at the University of Delaware. The Center’s Director, Professor Goossen, always leads the team in the field to conduct any audits. Additionally, there are usually 2-3 undergraduate students, who are training to be civil engineers or electrical engineers. Given my experiences joining a handful of these energy audits, I’m proud to say that the audit is over-qualified for an ASHRAE Level 1 Audit. 

Students Installing T8 LED Lights During the Audit

Students Installing T8 LED Lights During an Energy Audit

 

Over 8 years of working with renewable energy and energy efficiency, I still have trouble seeing what Dr. Goossen can observe in the blink of an eye in the field.  I don’t let that bother me.  In fact, I feel a bit proud because our energy audit offers a level of expertise beyond my capacity. 

Specific Benefits Offered by Our Energy Audit

If you would like to compare an energy audit with a self-check-up, I think these measurements of our energy audit program may help:

  • On average, each energy audit finds $22,147.5 worth energy savings annually.
  • The Utility Analysis conducted prior to the field walk-through contains 9 spreadsheets and 8 charts of data analysis, looking at 12 months utility usage pattern, comparing with local cooling/heating demand data, studying both the energy usage and the cost by source (electric, gas and/or fuel oil/propane, water/sewer).
  •  The walk-through takes at least 3 hours, for a facility with an annual utility cost below $40,000. 
  • We deliver the preliminary findings on the next day of the audit, if not the same day.
  • Almost all the organizations participating in the process found the audit report very helpful and they requested meetings with the audit team right after they received the preliminary report. 
  • The full audit report, on average, is about 40 pages in length and 1 MB in size. In the final report, our audit team willingly adjusted the suggested actions to fit the priorities and budget constraints of the organization, after the meeting regarding the preliminary findings.
  • Once our client, always our client. We follow up periodically even after the energy audit is completed to offer technical expertise when needed.

Let Us Help

Do you feel overwhelmed by how much work is involved in an energy audit? That’s why it can reveal the hidden improvement opportunities to greatly decrease your utility spending. That’s also why we hire experts to figure out how to reduce your utility bill. Our program partner, the IAC at UD, has performed over 300 audits finding millions of dollars in savings opportunities 

If you have not yet already, give an energy audit a try. You won’t be disappointed! If you have other concerns or would like to learn more, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. As always, we are here to serve you. 

 

 

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