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HVAC and Duct Testing
California's energy code requires third party verification on the installation or repair of a residential or non-residential HVAC unit. A qualified HERS rater is required to test the HVAC system to ensure that it is operating at the optimal performance level. In addition, energy incentive programs offered by PG&E and other utility companies also require that a HERS rater perform special inspections before qualifying the unit. Sean Stapleton is a certified HERS rater and offers the following HVAC tests and fully complies with the requirements of Title 24.
Duct Leakage Testing
A duct leakage test is performed by a HERS rater who pressurizes the air ducts in a residential or non-residential building to determine if there are any leaks in the duct work. Duct leakage can prevent air conditioning and heating systems from running efficiently. Studies indicate that duct leakage can account for a total of 25% of home energy loss! Even worse than energy loss, leaking ducts can allow dust and other harmful irritants into the home.
HVAC units require a specific level of refrigerant gas to operate properly. A refrigerant charge replenishes these gases when system repairs or leaks have caused depleted levels. The refrigerant charge test analyzes current refrigerant levels and determines whether or not the cooling system has the correct amount of refrigerant "charge" needed and whether airflow through the duct system is effective and adequate.
Cooling Coil Air Flow Test
The cooling coil air flow test verifies that the proper amount of air flow is filling the cooling unit. If the air flow is not sufficient, ice build-up will occur in the coils, which can lead to compressor failure. This test is performed when the air conditioning unit has been installed or serviced so as to prevent future problems.
Thermostatic Expansion Valve (TXV) Verification
The TXV valve is instrumental to the refrigeration cycle and controls the amount of refrigerant flow into the evaporator, which ultimately controls the superheating at the outlet of the evaporator. Thermal expansion valves are often referred to generically as "metering devices".
The TXV Verification is no longer required by the state of California, but if it is installed we will test it (at no extra charge) to ensure that it is working properly.
Refrigerant Charge and Airflow (RCA) Verification
The RCA test is done by using a system computer that will provide information needed to determine if the new HVAC system was properly installed. Without the RCA verification, many new HVAC systems would operate at less than their rated efficiency and waste energy.
Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) Verification
The EER test is used to confirm that the correct equipment was installed properly and ensures that the HVAC system isn't drawing more energy than intended. This is a very simple test that we include in the cost of a full HERS test.
Fan Watt Draw
A fan watt draw is a simple test that is performed on new systems or new duct work and assists with determining if the HVAC system is performing at the optimal level. This test measures how much electricity the fan uses at full power. Reducing the wattage draw of fans can provide significant peak demand savings.
Title 24 Service
A Home Sweet Home Inspection will comply with Title 24 requirements and complete all paperwork needed to pass the final inspection.
Ready to schedule an inspection? Contact us now!
A Home Sweet Home Inspection offers services in Stanislaus County and surrounding areas in California.
See below for the scope of our duct testing service.
When you get an inspection, make sure it's a sweet one!
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