Author Topic: How many paces in 100 yards?  (Read 3778 times)

Bud9051

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How many paces in 100 yards?
« on: April 21, 2010, 07:33:19 AM »
I put this under "off topic", because we don't have a category for rants.

Have you ever paced off a distance allowing about three feet per stride?  I have learned that my normal stride is just a bit short, so I compensate with slightly longer steps and it seems to get me in the ballpark, so to speak.  But have 20 people measure off the same distance using the same technique and you will probably locate 20 different spots.  Now, have everyone repeat that measurement 50 times and the shorter folks will probably have lost sight of those with longer legs.

The idea is, every step we take has a plus or minus error built into it, and the more steps we take the less chance there is that we will end up where we are headed.  So, where am I headed with this?  Performing an energy audit is a process of measuring, estimating, guesstimating, and flat out making up numbers to plug into some software to determine the heat loss in a home, accurately enough to grant or deny a home owner their rebate if they miss by just one percentage point.  Plug your ears, THAT'S RIDICULOUS!

Don't get me wrong, what we do is fantastic and an invaluable service to home owners and our country in the fight against rising energy costs or carbon emissions, however you want to view it, but it never was and there is no purpose in it becoming, a tool to define the exact energy use of a home, too many steps with too many variables.  If I were to purchase a home today, I would look at a rating number (I'm a geek), but it would be far less important than a thousand other considerations, or my wife's two thousand.  Talk to some real estate people and "energy use" barely comes up in their conversation, so it certainly isn't THAT important to home owners.

I won't go into who is responsible, we all know, but piling on regulations and certifications, endlessly, is a waste of time and money.  The fundamental function of an energy auditor should be to audit a home, produce a report, and move on.  The construction people can read (no slam intended), they are subject to inspections, and the home owner can decide what they want to have done and who they want to do it.  As far as incentives are concerned, add up what people can save with your recommendations, $500 to $5,000 a year is a pretty good incentive.

No, our government has plenty of problems to be working on, and energy auditing is not one of them.

Bud
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Blake Jensen

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Re: How many paces in 100 yards?
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2010, 08:53:15 AM »
My hope on this whole energy field is that the government and its involvement will be a something we can use as a launching board. Lets use it to get what we do out there for people to see what a great reward they can get by fixing up there homes. The gov will drop out of this when it isn't useful to them and I hope by then more people will recognize what we do and will use our companies to help them out, realizing the yearly savings we can find for them.

Bud9051

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Re: How many paces in 100 yards?
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2010, 11:21:01 AM »
Blake, "The gov will drop out of this when it isn't useful to them".  Do you really see the government dropping out?  Once a gov entity gets its teeth into a program like this, this one shines from every direction, they can't afford to let it go.  The energy issue, the carbon emissions, the job creation, the bureaucracy, the revenue source, I don't know what could possibly happen to make this industry "not useful" to them.  But given that they are here to stay, I want to push them to be realistic, and trying to score a home at an 84 vs an 83 isn't realistic.

Have you ever read what the tolerances are on our LBL number?  The LBL was created to replace the good old estimate of dividing by 20.  So now we divide by something between 12 and 30.  Well, the creators of the LBL numbers give them a -50% to + 100% margin of error.  I think that falls somewhere between a guesstimate and just making up a number.  Our work does very well at identifying which homes need more work, what that work should be, finding problems, and avoiding health hazards.  If we STOP right there, with a simple report form, we could do twice as many audits in the same amount of time for less money per audit.

Take a few minutes and read over the Resnet web site and see if you come away with a feeling that they are "all done"?

Bud

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Blake Jensen

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Re: How many paces in 100 yards?
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2010, 12:50:07 PM »
I would like to see government do a good job with this but i know it wont happen.The bigger this get the more GOV we will get,The more bureaucracy we will get maybe a better term. I see it already. One municipality is already turning the wheels of "tightening up the process" and it is crap. Instead of letting any auditor do a audit it has been cut to 2 and the remediation has hit the lowest bid standards that we all know will be bad. I fear that guesstimating could kill this field, and I don't trust the modeling software that i have worked with.

Bud9051

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Re: How many paces in 100 yards?
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2010, 02:43:56 PM »
IMO, the sooner the gov runs out of stimulus money the better.  When they don't have money to control, they will go away.  The regulations, we will deal with them, but the low bid contract concept is just a result of too much money floating around.  Long after I'm burried, they will still be trying to figure out where all of the money went :).

Low income, elderly assistance, and a lot of in between people do need help and that is where the government should concentrate, but that still leaves about a hundred million homes for the rest of us.

Bud
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