Momentum, your home energy efficiency partner, provides the following services for building energy efficient homes.
ENERGY STAR Standards
Momentum welcomes the opportunity to provide you and your company with verification services for the ENERGY STAR program. We have a proven track record and years of experience in providing energy efficiency services.
Typically a home will require 3 inspections. These inspections include the following:
Rough-In Inspection (at the framing stage)
- Perform duct blaster – determines that duct leakage falls within required parameters
- Inspect energy seal – ensure all penetrations are caulked and/or foam filled
Manage all required checklists
- Thermal Enclosure
- Water Management or Indoor airPLUS
- HVAC Verified
Building Envelope Inspection (at the framing stage)
- Verify correct R-Values
- Check for gaps and voids
- Confirm that cavities have been filled with insulation
- Verify window qualifications – backer rod, U factor under.30
Final Inspection – Envelope, HVAC & Lighting (right before final clean)
- Verify furnace qualifications and filtering system
- Check required attic insulation is installed properly
- Check crawl space – insulation and vapor barrier installed properly
- Verify heat pump meets HSPF & SEER (AC SEER Only) requirements
- Verify water heater efficient factor of at least .61 gas / .93 electric
- Verify 80% of the lighting is ENERGY STAR
- Perform blower door test
If additional inspections are required, Momentum will notify builder as soon as possible.
Momentum partners with the builders and trades throughout the build process to ensure homes are built to an ENERGY STAR standards.
As part of the ENERGY STAR building process, Momentum is involved in the design phase and performs framing inspections, insulation inspections, final testing, and certification. Momentum is there to ensure that all the pieces are coming together and the final product will be a comfortable home that is as energy efficient as possible. It truly is a partnership throughout the entire ENERGY STAR build process.
As part of the HERS Modeling building process, Momentum starts with a review of the project's plans and Manual J to determine a preliminary HERS Score based on the HERS Index, utilizing the RESNET Accredited Rating Software to calculate a rating score on the HERS Index
During the building process for a HERS-Modeled Home, Momentum is an on-site conducting test at the framing stage such as a duct blaster test, air seal, and insulation inspection. When the home is finished we do a blower door test along with other inspections such as attics, crawls, lights appliances, water run off and balancing of the system if required.
Finally, once Momentum has finalized the home, we input the final numbers into REMrate to produce the homes final HERS score. Momentum will then issue the builder a HERS Modeling Certificate.
The lower the score on the HERS Index, the BETTER! The lower the score the more energy efficient the home and the less the homeowner will pay in energy bills. LOWER IS BETTER with the HERS Index.
As part of the Duct Blaster Test, Momentum utilizes the Minneapolis Duct Blaster System, on-site, during the framing stage, to measure the airtightness of forced air heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) ductwork. Momentum connects the Duct Blaster fan to the duct system at the air handler cabinet or a return grille which forces air pressure through the entire HVAC system to detects system leaks at either the joints or connection points. This process is similar to the way a plumber pressure test water pipes for leaks.
To ensure a healthier and well-balanced home, duct systems should be mastic sealed.
As part of the Air Seal Inspection, Momentum will be on-site at the framing stage to verify that all holes and gaps have been sealed using either caulking or expanding foam. This important stage helps to make the home airtight and less susceptible to drafts and energy loss. Momentum conducts a physical inspection to ensure that not only was this process was completed but also that it meets ENERGY STAR and building code requirements. A well-sealed envelope, coupled with the correct amount of insulation, can make a real difference for the homeowner's utility bills.
The Thermal Boundary Inspection, also referred to as the thermal envelope, restricts or slows the flow of heat from conditioned to unconditioned spaces.
Conditioned space consists of:
Any living area of the home. Examples are living room, kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms.
Unconditioned spaces consist of:
Any non-living areas of the home. Examples are a garage, most attics, and most crawl spaces.
As part of the Thermal Boundary Inspection, Momentum will physically review both the conditioned and unconditioned spaces. While inspecting current insulation levels in each of these spaces, special focus is given to areas historically known for leakage: the knee walls, attics, crawlspaces, bonus room walls and windows.
Momentum will also review the home's ventilation along with common air leakage sites such as staircases, chimney chases, recessed light fixtures, plumbing and electrical penetrations, and possibly framing details. This process ensures the homes overall health and comfort.
As part of the Insulation Inspection, Momentum will be onsite to review and verify that the insulation was installed correctly. Insulation is one of the main ingredients to ensure a home is warm in the winter and cool during the summer. ENERGY STAR and building codes require minimum insulation levels in walls, floors, and ceilings throughout the home. Proper insulation will also ensure that the HVAC system works efficiently and while keeping the home at optimal comfort levels.
As part of the Blower Door Test, Momentum utilizes the Minneapolis Blower Door on-site, during the final inspection to measure the airtightness of forced air. Blower Doors provide a reliable, highly accurate and cost-effective method for determining a home’s air leakage. The Blower Door test can identify building envelope leakage; leaks such as penetration from plumbing and electrical can cause drafts resulting in an unwanted variance in temperature. Blower Door air tightness measurements can help estimate the need for additional mechanical ventilation.
As part of the Balancing Test, Momentum will be measuring and adjusting the airflow and temperature evenly throughout the entire home. Balancing is performed by increasing or decreasing airflow into specific rooms to improve comfort avoiding hot or cold rooms.
AirFlowBalance.com offer a great visual for understanding the importance of balancing. of The central heating and cooling equipment operates like your cardiovascular system to move conditioned air. Your air handler (the heart) pumps the air (like blood) through the duct work (or veins) sending the conditioned air (vital nutrients) to the house (body). Your HVAC equipment relies on many aspects working together efficiently to maximize your comfort with minimum energy cost.
As part of the Indoor airPLUS Inspection, Momentum will inspect and verify the additional construction features that were used to help protect the home from moisture and mold, pests, combustion gases and other airborne pollutants. Momentum ensures that features are in compliance with EPA's rigorous guidelines and specifications.
When certifying an ENERGY STAR home, a builder has the option of either performing an airPLUS or Water Management Inspection.
As part of the Water Management Inspection for ENERGY STAR, Momentum will inspect the flashing, moisture barriers, and membranes of the home to ensure protection from water- and mold-related problems thus preventing moisture-related indoor air quality problems.
Momentum and the builder follow a comprehensive water and moisture management system to protect the roof, walls, and foundation. Also, special care is taken to protect onsite building materials to make sure they don’t become water-damaged during the construction process.