Visit residential buildings and talk to owners and residents.  Inspect, test, and measure to decide what energy-efficient retrofits are practical and cost-effective. 

Specific purposes of an energy audit are to:

  • Identify the type, size, condition, and rate of energy consumption for each major energy-using device.
  • Recommend appropriate energy conservation, operation, and maintenance procedures.
  • Estimate labor and materials costs for energy retrofits.
  • Project savings expected from energy retrofits.
  • Note current and potential health and safety problems and how they may be affected by proposed changes.
  • Explain behavioral changes that will reduce energy waste.

Among the major goals of an energy specialist’s mission are to:

  • Conserve energy and save money.
  • Protect the environment by reducing the release of harmful energy by-products.
  • Increase comfort in residential buildings.
  • Enhance health and safety of building’s residents.
  • Increase public awareness of energy saving products and procedures.


Thermography, thermal imaging, or thermal video, is type of infrared imaging.  The amount of radiation emitted by an object increases with temperature, therefore thermography allows one to see variations in temperature (hence the name).

Infrared thermography is a well-accepted method of imaging and evaluating the thermal efficiency of home and building insulation, doors, windows, and other penetrations, along with the efficiency of heating and cooling systems.  Home energy auditors have been able to proactively address the issue of wasted energy by using infrared cameras, and in turn help make homes more energy efficient, saving money and natural resources.

Northwest Rural Public Power District has an infrared camera to use with distribution system operation and maintenance programs, as well as, energy efficiency inspections of residential homes.