Energy Code Compliance Verification
Building Performance provides energy code compliance verification services for new residential buildings in Indiana and Kentucky. All new construction residential buildings must comply with the current energy code in Indiana, which is based upon the 2018 IECC. Kentucky adopted a modified version of the 2009 IECC energy code in October of 2012, and it has not been updated since.
There are three methods, or "paths", available that builders can choose to use to pass the new code requirements.
These three paths include:
Total UA Alternative Path
Performance Path (HERS Rater)
Most builders will find that the "Performance Path" will be the most cost-effective to choose, especially in Climate Zone 5 (central and northern Indiana).
For a full presentation on the 2012 Kentucky Residential Energy Code, click here.
2018 Indiana Energy Code presentation can be found here.
More on the Indiana & Kentucky Energy Codes
The 2012 Kentucky Energy Code is based on the 2009 IECC (International Energy Conservation Code), which requires blower door testing and duct-blaster testing, when choosing the "performance path" compliance method.
The Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction issued an additional notification in regards to duct-leakage testing requirements on 10/10/2014 and it stated "Effective July 1, 2015 all residential duct systems located in unconditioned spaces (not heated/cooled) must be pressure tested in accordance with section 403.2.2 of the 2009 IECC."
New homes built in Indiana also have two climate zones as defined in the 2018 IECC. The new energy code requirements differ slightly depending on the climate zone the home is built in, either Zone 4 or Zone 5.
The main difference with the new code requirements in each Climate Zone is the amount of insulation needed in above grade walls.
Prescriptively, Climate Zone 5 requires a minimum R18 or higher wall assembly, versus R13 for Climate Zone 4. However, some homes may not need the R18+ insulation if the Performance Path is chosen for code compliance.
This must be verified by using energy-modeling software, such as Ekotrope, Rem/Rate, Rem/Design, or EnergyGauge, by an independent third-party. Only a trained building-science professional, such as a HERS Rater, can perform this task.
When a builder chooses the "Performance Path" to comply with the new code, a HERS Rater is involved and projected energy modeling is done based on the building plans and specs, and the software will state whether or not the plan will pass the new code requirements. On-site blower-door and duct-leakage testing is performed when the "performance path" is chosen.
Different "build scenarios" can be run in the software to easily determine the most cost-effective ways for new homes to comply.