The High Performance Home Process:

3 phases, 41 points, 1 Comprehensive Checklist

Phase I: Preliminary Rating

1. House plan review confirming HERS rating of 70 or lower
During this process, we work with the builder to confirm that the energy related features of the home will earn a HERS rating of 70 or lower. A ≤ 70 HERS rating will ensure that the home is at least 15% more energy efficient than a home built to minimum code.
2. Manual J – HVAC load calculation review
This review will ensure that the HVAC system and ductwork are sized properly for the home—a critical step that is often overlooked. Homes with HVAC systems that are too large will not dehumidify the air properly, a problem that can result in moisture issues. If, during our review, we find problems with the load, we work with the HVAC designer to correct the issues and ensure that the equipment is right-sized.
3. Mechanical fresh air design review
This review ensures that a home receives fresh air through a designed ventilation system which improves the air quality for breathing and helps eliminate the potential for moisture, odors and pollutants to accrue in a home.

Phase II: Rough Inspections – Framing & Insulation Inspection Checklist

Prior to plumbing, mechanical and electrical rough-ins, a framing walk-through must be completed for all unique model types in order to address specific building details in the proper sequence. Then, at the insulation stage, all homes must be verified to meet the High Performance Home Framing and Insulation Inspection Checklist by a HERS Rater or BPI Envelope Professional. Insulation grading

4. Wall insulation is Grade II or better
5. Floor insulation is Grade II or better
6. Ceiling insulation is Grade II or better

Walls — six-sided rigid air barriers for:
7. Walls behind showers and tubs
8. Walls behind fireplaces
9. Attic knee walls
10. Wall adjoining porch roof
11. Staircase walls
12. Double walls

RIMS and floors
13. Garage rim / band joist adjoining conditioned space
14. Cantilevered floor
15. Insulation in contact with floor above garage
16. Floor above unconditioned basement or crawlspace
17. Blocking under all knee walls

18. Dropped ceiling / soffit below unconditioned attic
19. All other ceilings
20. Rigid insulation dams at attic access and soffits
21. Access doors insulated and air-sealed

22. Duct / flue shaft
23. Plumbing / piping
24. Electrical / data wiring
25. Other plate penetrations
26. Bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans
27. Recessed ICAT lighting with gasket and/or caulk

Other Envelope Requirements
28. Sill plates sealed to floors over unconditioned space
29. Continuous top plates
30. Top plates sealed to sheetrock
31. Windows and doors sealed with caulk or foam
32. Multi-family common walls air sealed

Advanced framing
33. Advanced framing – insulated corners, headers, T’s
34. Stud spacing 16” o.c. minimum and limited framing per
structural code, no additional
35. High heel truss achieves R19 over outer edge top plate
36. Optional: increased spacing joists, trusses and studs

Phase III: Final Inspection with Blower Door and HVAC Duct Leakage Test

At the final stage of construction, a HERS Rater will confirm that all of
the designed energy features are installed in the home.

37. Confirmed rating with HERS 70 or lower
38. Blower door test confirmed at 5 ACH 50 or less
39. Duct leakage test confirmed at 6% or less
40. Mechanical fresh air system installed
41. Home energy monitoring system installed

We also provide documentation for energy code compliance at this stage and post the energy efficiency certificate in the home’s electrical panel.