Energy testing, yes, it does seem weird to test an old house for energy efficiency when upon first glance it is easy to see that the windows don’t seal, there is light visible through the door jambs and there is no insulation in half the house, but….one must establish a baseline number in order to apply for energy rebates.

The energy auditor arrived and performed his evaluations.  Most of them involve visual confirmation of insulation levels etc which don’t make for fun and exciting blog pictures but there was one thing he did that was picture worthy.  The draft test.

Door Draft Proof Test

The draft test started with an insert being set up in the front door frame.  The insert was a frame with a fabric covering and a hole in it for a large fan.

Once the fan was set up the test started with the house being pressurized by the door insert/fan combo.

The auditor went around making notes on locations of air leakage and also had a meter which measured the air tightness of the entire house.

After the auditor was finished he reviewed his findings with me.  He chuckled a few times but rightfully so…our fixer upper isn’t exactly a gold star winner in any energy department, especially air tightness.  Good thing we are going to do some major upgrades!

Now we need to review which energy upgrades we are going to do, and what rebates are available.

The rebates that are currently available in our area (Lower Mainland BC Canada) are not as awesome as they were in the days of the ecoEnergy Retrofit and Livesmart BC grants, but they aren’t bad.  Currently the rebates are offered through BC Hydro and FortisBC.  We will be exploring the following rebates:

rebates-fullFrom the BCHydro & FortisBC websites


Up to $1,200 for exterior wall insulation
Up to $1,000 for basement insulation
Up to $600 for attic insulation

Draftproofing* and ventilation

Up to $500 for draftproofing upgrades
$25 for an ENERGY STAR® bathroom fan (maximum 2 per homeowner)

Space heating

$800 for a ductless heat pump (electrically heated homes)
Rebates for EnerChoice fireplace are also available. Visit

Water heating

Rebates for gas hot water heaters, visit

Bonus Offer*

Complete 3 or more eligible upgrades and receive an additional $750.

*EnerGuide home evaluation2 by an energy advisor required.

More Info BCHydro & FortisBC