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Jennifer Mui and Sarah Jackson
Architecture and Engineering National Center for Preservation Technology and Training
Purpose: to improve energy efﬁciency of an historic building
without negatively impacting its historic character. An energy audit analyzes energy use in a building by performing tests that identify areas of signiﬁcant energy loss. Energy audits inform energy saving techniques such as weather stripping gaps around doorways, wrapping insulated ﬁlm over the windows to block airﬂow, and caulking cracks on the walls. Energy Audit Equipment
Energy audit at the Seed House at Oakland Plantation, Bermuda, Louisiana.
Objects such as pipes are often loosely ﬁtted to the structure. These holes can be a source of excessive airﬂow. Sealing the gap on the interior and exterior helps with less airﬂow entering/exiting the building.
The “spot meter” (crosshairs) can pinpoint the temperature of a material. Historic windows and doors can leak energy through gaps around the edges of frames and jambs.
Infrared Camera This special camera can detect differences in temperature that are telltale signs of energy loss.
Infrared images show bright yellow, orange, red, and white areas representing heat/airﬂow entering or exiting the building. Sometimes, this airﬂow can be detected by hand.
Blower Door (DoorFan-Q46) This device has sensors that measure the amount of air that leaks from a building. A weather-tight building will leak less air and waste less energy.
Seed House Floor Plan
Interior of the Seed House: view looking Southeast
The Seed House is a long rectangular building that was used historically for storing cotton seeds. The Seed House was designed so that the structure could ventilate heat naturally. It was restored with modern technology in early 2000 as a conditioned space for a maintenance workshop. Without altering the original ventilation design, the Seed House will waste energy.
Infrared Image: North Elevation
Original Image: North Elevation