News and Updates

SCE August 1 Program Update

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

 

 

Budget Update

As of now, 35% of the Southern California Edison (SCE) program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out twice a month unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentives.

 

Worried about the SoCal REN Program ending? We’ve got you!

From August 1 to Aug 31, 2018, all projects in the SoCal REN territory are eligible to participate in the joint SCE/SoCalGas program at the full 100% incentive!

Beginning September 1, 2018 both the SoCal REN and joint SCE/SoCalGas territories will be folded into the SoCalGas only program. Projects will be incentivized at the rate of 30% of the total incentive amount (for Home Upgrade) or total energy savings amount (for Advanced Home Upgrade) for projects in the SoCalGas Municipalities excluding LADWP. The program will be offering free third-party diagnostic testing and project processing, too!

Please contact your account manager if you have any questions.

 

Deadlines: Program Reservations

To ensure deadlines are clear and concise, please keep in mind the following:

  • All reservations for projects in the SCE/SoCalGas service territory must be submitted by August 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST unless program funds are exhausted before this date and time.
  • To receive an incentive, all projects reserved by August 31, 2018 must be post-retrofit submitted with all required documentation by October 31, 2018.
  • Please note: these deadlines only apply to SCE/SoCalGas projects. No incentive checks will be issued in 2019.

 

Reminder: Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement for Advanced Home Upgrade

For access to greater incentives through Advanced Home Upgrade, contractors are no longer required to have BPI Building Analysts (BA) on-staff to offer the Advanced Home Upgrade Pathway, effective immediately.  

Participating Contractors can now work with any third-party BPI BAs in the marketplace to perform diagnostic testing for Advanced Home Upgrade and offer customers this pathway with a BPI BA on-team rather than on-staff.

If you would like more information on submitting Advanced Home Upgrade projects, please contact your account management team.

 

Reminder: Mentoring No Longer Required

Newly trained BPI BAs will no longer need mentoring to perform testing for projects. This also applies to new contractors joining the program.

Although mentoring is not required, it is highly recommended.

 

Reminder: New Contractor Participation Agreement

The Contractor Participation Agreement that was updated in 2018 to be more contractor-friendly is now available on the contractors’ website here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management team if you have questions about any changes.

 

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy.

If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program.

Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

 

ICF is moving to a new location!

Effective July 30, 2018 our office will be located at:

49 Discovery Suite 250

Irvine CA 92618

Please update your records and notify your insurance providers to send all mail to this location.

 

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

The Numbers Don’t Lie

 The numbers don’t lie: 75% of energy efficiency projects over $10,000 are financed. You can sell higher-value projects by offering financing options to your customers.

One great option is the Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program. Promoted by the state of California with the support of the investor-owned utilities, including SCE and SoCalGas, the REEL program offers financing with no fees or pre-payment penalties, and rates as low as 5.99%. With REEL, you can help your customers choose the project they want, including projects through the Home Upgrade program.

 

Already a REEL Participating Contractor, but haven’t used REEL yet?

The REEL Contractor Support team is here to help. With one click or call, you can get up to speed on the program process and marketing resources. Contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com to get one-on-one coaching. 

 

Not yet a REEL Participating Contractor?

Visit GoGreenFinancing.com to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. 

 

Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade provides assistance and incentives for home improvement projects that can reduce energy use and make homes more comfortable. This statewide program is managed locally by utilities and regional energy networks and directed by the California Public Utilities Commission in collaboration with the California Energy Commission. Funding comes from utility customers under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. Incentives are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are effective until the funding is expended or the program is discontinued. Terms and conditions apply. See program rules for details. Programs may be modified or terminated without prior notice. ©2018 Trademarks used with permission and are property of their respective owners. All rights reserved.

 
 

SCG Only August 1 Program Update

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

 

Summer is Here, Maximize Your Incentives!

 

In this issue you can expect to see:

  • SoCalGas Budget Update: 68% Remaining, Sell and Reserve!
  • Complimentary Third-Party Testing and Project Processing
  • New Measures: Pipe Wrap
  • Marketing Effort for Riverside and LADWP Territories - Lead Program
  • ICF Moving to a New Location
  • Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

 

Important Reminders:

  • Sign the New Contractor Participation Agreement!
  • Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement for Advanced Home Upgrade
  • Review the 90-Day Cancellation Policy
  • Reminder: Mentoring No Longer Required

Budget Update

As of now, 68% of the SoCalGas Only program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out twice a month unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account manager to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.

 

Limited Time Only “Summer Special” Complimentary Third-Party Testing and Project Processing

We heard you and we are here to help. Are you interested in getting complimentary diagnostic testing and project processing?

The program is partnering with partnering Raters to provide you with diagnostic testing and project processing at no cost to you for a limited time only starting September 1, 2018.

You could save up to $1,000 per project and pass these saving on to your customers. Please contact your account manager for more details.

 

Worried about the SoCalREN Program ending? We’ve got you!

From August 1 to Aug 31, 2018, all projects in the SoCalREN territory are eligible to participate in the joint SCE/SoCalGas program at the full 100% incentive!

Beginning September 1, 2018 both the SoCalREN and joint SCE/SoCalGas territories will be folded into the SoCalGas only program. Projects will be incentivized at the rate of 30% of the total incentive amount (for Home Upgrade) or total energy savings amount (for Advanced Home Upgrade) for projects in the SoCalGas Municipalities excluding LADWP. The program will be offering free third-party diagnostic testing and project processing, too!

Please contact your account manager if you have any questions.

 

New Measure: Pipe Wrap

The program has brought back the inclusion of pipe wrap as a measure for both Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade.

This measure will not qualify as a part of the three measure minimum requirement for both Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade. The measure will not be incentivized in Home Upgrade but will count toward the minimum 10% energy savings requirement.

For Advanced Home Upgrade, the measure will contribute to energy savings and additional incentives through the $130/percentage point calculations. The Incentive Calculators are currently being updated and will be available on the contractors’ website as soon as possible.

The program Info Sheets have been updated to include the new measure and are available for download on the contractors’ website. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions.

 

Marketing Effort for Riverside and LADWP Territories – Lead Program

The program is preparing a marketing blitz for the Riverside and LADWP territories in an effort to generate leads for our contractors and boost participation in the program. 

For those Contractors that have submitted a project in the last 6 months you’re automatically enrolled in this effort.

If you’re interested in participating and not sure if you’re enrolled, please reach out to your account manager for more information.

Catherine Atsu

Email

 

Daniel Glatman

Email

 

Savi Bassa

Email

 

 

Reminder: Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement for Advanced Home Upgrade 

For access to greater incentives through Advanced Home Upgrade, contractors are no longer required to have BPI Building Analysts (BA) on-staff to offer the Advanced Home Upgrade Pathway, effective immediately.  

Participating Contractors can now work with any third-party BPI BAs in the marketplace to perform diagnostic testing for Advanced Home Upgrade and offer customers this pathway with a BPI BA on-team rather than on-staff.

If you would like more information on submitting Advanced Home Upgrade projects, please contact your account management team.

 

Reminder: Mentoring No Longer Required

Newly trained BPI BAs will no longer be required to attend mentoring sessions in order to perform testing for projects.

This also applies to new contractors joining the program. Although mentoring is not required, it is highly recommended in order to help support contractors with program requirements. To schedule a mentoring session, please contact your account manager.

 

Reminder: New Contactor Participation Agreement

The Contractor Participation Agreement that was updated in 2018 to be more contractor-friendly is now available on the contractor website here. This document must be signed and returned to your account manager to remain active in the program. Please contact your account management team if you have questions about any changes.

 

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program.

Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

 

ICF is moving to a new location!

Effective July 30, 2018 our office will be located at:

49 Discovery Suite 250

Irvine CA 92618

 

Please update your records and notify your insurance providers to send all mail to this location.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

The Numbers Don’t Lie

 The numbers don’t lie: 75% of energy efficiency projects over $10,000 are financed. You can sell higher-value projects by offering financing options to your customers.

One great option is the Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program. Promoted by the state of California with the support of the investor-owned utilities, including SCE and SoCalGas, the REEL program offers financing with no fees or pre-payment penalties, and rates as low as 5.99%. With REEL, you can help your customers choose the project they want, including projects through the Home Upgrade program.

 

Already a REEL Participating Contractor, but haven’t used REEL yet?

The REEL Contractor Support team is here to help. With one click or call, you can get up to speed on the program process and marketing resources. Contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com to get one-on-one coaching. 

 

Not yet a REEL Participating Contractor?

Visit GoGreenFinancing.com to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. 

Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade provides assistance and incentives for home improvement projects that can reduce energy use and make homes more comfortable. This statewide program is managed locally by utilities and regional energy networks and directed by the California Public Utilities Commission in collaboration with the California Energy Commission. Funding comes from utility customers under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. Incentives are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are effective until the funding is expended or the program is discontinued. Terms and conditions apply. See program rules for details. Programs may be modified or terminated without prior notice. ©2018 Trademarks used with permission and are property of their respective owners. All rights reserved.

 

July 3 Program Update

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Summer is Here, Maximize Your Incentives!

In this issue you can expect to see:

  • Higher Incentives, Window Venting selecting "Yes" No Longer Required
  • Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement
  • SoCalGas Budget Update: 70% Remaining, Sell and Reserve!
  • New Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade Incentive Calculators

Important Reminders:

  • Sign the New Contractor Participation Agreement Here!
  • Review the 90-Day Cancellation Policy

Budget Update

As of now, 70% of the SoCalGas Only program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out twice a month unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account manager to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.

Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement for Advanced Home Upgrade 

For access to greater incentives through Advanced Home Upgrade, contractors are no longer required to have BPI Building Analysts (BA) on-staff to offer the Advanced Home Upgrade Pathway, effective immediately.   

Participating Contractors can now work with any third-party BPI BAs in the marketplace to perform diagnostic testing for Advanced Home Upgrade and offer customers this pathway with a BPI BA on-team rather than on-staff.

If you would like more information on submitting Advanced Home Upgrade projects, please contact your account management team.

Mentoring No Longer Required

Newly trained BPI BAs will no longer need mentoring in order to perform testing for projects.

This also applies to new contractors joining the program. Although mentoring is not required, it is highly recommended. To schedule a mentoring session, please contact your account manager.

Reversal of Window Venting Decision: SnuggPro/Optimizer

Are Your Windows Open or Closed?

In mid-February of 2017, Snugg Pro released V5.5 of their energy-modeling software. Contained within the update was an option which allow modelers to choose “Yes” or “No” for “Window Venting.” At the time, window venting was a new energy modeling concept affecting the operation of a home’s HVAC system. The window venting choice made by the modeler had a direct impact on the modeled energy-savings for the project. Around the same time as the Snugg Pro revision, the folks at OptiMiser added a window venting option to their software as well.

The purpose of the window venting option is to more accurately model the home’s energy use. If “Yes” is selected for window venting, the software assumes the homeowner opens the windows and doors based on the temperature difference between the indoors and the outdoors to take advantage of free heating and cooling. This opening of the windows and doors supplements the HVAC system allowing it to run less, therefore using fewer kWh for cooling and fewer therms for heating. If “No” is selected for window venting, the software assumes the homeowner does not open the windows or doors to supplement the HVAC system, thereby relying solely on the HVAC system for all of the home’s heating and cooling needs.

Shortly after the release of V5.5 Program Management made a decision that dictated when modelers should select “Yes” or “No” for window venting. The following was included in the May 1, 2017 decision as to when “Yes” or “No” should be selected:

All Advanced Default path projects, and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data shall check “Yes” for the Window Venting option, on both the base and improved screens. Advanced Custom path projects that submit utility bill data should check “Yes” or “No” for the Window Venting option depending on how the home is operated.

After much consideration a decision has been made to modify the previously stated guideline in an attempt to increase participation in the Program. Effective June 13, 2018 the following policy went into effect:

For Advanced Default path projects and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data, contractors/auditors are no longer required to select “Yes” for window venting. When building energy models in Snugg Pro or OptiMiser contractors/auditors shall be allowed to select either “Yes” or “No” regarding window venting. This determination should be made based on how the home is actually operated. If the homeowner opens the windows to take advantage of the temperature difference between indoors and outdoors to supplement the HVAC system, the contractor/auditor shall select “Yes” for window venting. If the homeowner relies solely on the HVAC system for all the home’s heating and cooling needs, the contractor/auditor shall select “No” for window venting.

No matter what condition the contractor/auditor selects for window venting, the same condition (either “Yes” or “No”) must be selected in the energy model for both the baseline and the improved conditions.

To reiterate, contractor’s and auditors will no longer be required to select “Yes” for window venting on Advanced Default path projects and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data. Instead they should select “Yes” or “No” based on the way the home is actually operated.

New Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade Incentive Calculators

To accommodate new measures recently added to the Gas Only program, new incentive calculators are now available on the contractor website. As a reminder the three new measures are:

  • Smart Thermostats
  • Auto- Diverting Tub Spouts
  • Pool Heaters 

These measures contribute to the minimum 10% energy savings requirement in Advanced Home Upgrade.

Reminder: New Contactor Participation Agreement

The Contractor Participation Agreement that was updated in 2018 to be more contractor-friendly is now available on the contractor website here. This document must be signed and returned to your account manager to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management team if you have questions about any changes.

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program.

Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

QC Corner

SoCalGas Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade is Open for Business as Usual

With the SCE/SoCalGas Joint Program winding down before the end of the year, we wanted to be sure contractors and auditors working in (or thinking about working in) the SoCalGas territories understand that the SoCalGas Program is open and will remain open for business. In addition, the Program has added new measures including smart thermostats, auto diverting tub spouts and pool heaters to help entice prospective customers. For specific dates regarding the SCE/SoCalGas Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade Joint program closing, please see the QC Corner article in the July 1, 2018 SCE/SoCalGas Joint Program newsletter, or contact your account manager.

The SoCalGas program is scheduled to operate unchanged through 2018 and into 2019. In 2019, the program will be revamped and run by a third-party implementer. At this point in time, the design of the new program has not been established by a non-utility implementer.

The SoCalGas territory covers a large geographical area served by a variety of municipal electric suppliers allowing contractors the ability to work in many different regions. Key areas include LADWP territory and the city of Riverside — due to larger incentives offered when working in these areas. If LADWP and the city of Riverside are out of your normal service territory there are still many other opportunities for you to bring more homeowners into the program.

For specifics regarding a particular territory or any of the new energy-efficiency measures contact your account manager for details.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Top 3 Ways to Introduce Your Customers to REEL Financing

Your customers have a choice when it comes to finding the REEL lender that’s right for them when completing a Home Upgrade project or other energy efficiency improvement. And you have the resources you need to connect your customers to those lenders. Here are a few tips to help you make that connection.

  1. Explain that REEL offers lenders you can trust. REEL financing is promoted by the state of California, with the support of SCE and SoCalGas.
  2. If your customer is a technology user, direct them to GoGreenFinancing.com, where they’ll find everything they need to learn more about REEL—including finding the lender who’s right for them.
  3. If your customer prefers paper, give them a copy of the REEL Lenders Chart (which contains general information about all lenders) or share a copy of the appropriate REEL Lender profiles (which provide detailed information about specific lenders).

Visit GoGreenFinancing.com to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. Or, contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or Email.

Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade provides assistance and incentives for home improvement projects that can reduce energy use and make homes more comfortable. This statewide program is managed locally by utilities and regional energy networks and directed by the California Public Utilities Commission in collaboration with the California Energy Commission. Funding comes from utility customers under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. Incentives are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are effective until the funding is expended or the program is discontinued. Terms and conditions apply. See program rules for details. Programs may be modified or terminated without prior notice. ©2018 Trademarks used with permission and are property of their respective owners. All rights reserved.

 

SCE - July 3 Program Update

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

 

 

Attention All:

Joint Program Closing August 31 or When Funds are Depleted!

In this issue you can expect to see:

  • Sell and Reserve Projects!
  • Budget Remaining 38%

Important Reminders:

  • Sign the New Contractor Participation Agreement Here!
  • Review the 90-Day Cancellation Policy

Budget Update

As of now, 38% of the Southern California Edison (SCE) program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out twice a month unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentives.

SCE/SoCalGas® Home Upgrade Program Sunset Date

The last day to reserve projects in the SCE/SoCalGas territory will be August 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST unless program funds are exhausted before this date and time.

It is imperative that you reserve your projects, receive confirmation as soon as possible, and before construction begins to ensure you protect your company from liability. This will help maintain your good reputation with your customers. The last day to post-retrofit submit projects in this territory will be October 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST.

Deadlines: Program Reservations

To ensure deadlines are clear and concise, please keep in mind the following:

  • All reservations for projects in the SCE/SoCalGas service territory must be submitted by August 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST unless program funds are exhausted before this date and time.
  • In order to receive an incentive, all projects reserved by August 31, 2018 must be post-retrofit submitted with all required documentation by October 31, 2018.
  • Please note: these deadlines only apply to SCE/SoCalGas projects. No incentive checks will be issued in 2019.

Removal of BPI On-Staff Requirement for Advanced Home Upgrade

For access to greater incentives through Advanced Home Upgrade, contractors are no longer required to have BPI Building Analysts (BA) on-staff to offer the Advanced Home Upgrade Pathway, effective immediately.   

Participting Contractors can now work with any third-party BPI BAs in the marketplace toa perform diagnostic testing for Advanced Home Upgrade and offer customers this pathway with a BPI BA on-team rather than on-staff.

If you would like more information on submitting Advanced Home Upgrade projects, please contact your account management team.

Reversal of Window Venting Decision: SnuggPro/Optimizer

Are Your Windows Open or Closed?

In mid-February of 2017, Snugg Pro released V5.5 of their energy-modeling software. Contained within the update was an option which allow modelers to choose “Yes” or “No” for “Window Venting.” At the time, window venting was a new energy modeling concept affecting the operation of a home’s HVAC system. The window venting choice made by the modeler had a direct impact on the modeled energy-savings for the project. Around the same time as the Snugg Pro revision, the folks at OptiMiser added a window venting option to their software as well.

The purpose of the window venting option is to more accurately model the home’s energy use. If “Yes” is selected for window venting, the software assumes the homeowner opens the windows and doors based on the temperature difference between the indoors and the outdoors to take advantage of free heating and cooling. This opening of the windows and doors supplements the HVAC system allowing it to run less, therefore using fewer kWh for cooling and fewer therms for heating. If “No” is selected for window venting, the software assumes the homeowner does not open the windows or doors to supplement the HVAC system, thereby relying solely on the HVAC system for all of the home’s heating and cooling needs.

Shortly after the release of V5.5 Program Management made a decision that dictated when modelers should select “Yes” or “No” for window venting. The following was included in the May 1, 2017 decision as to when “Yes” or “No” should be selected:

All Advanced Default path projects, and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data shall check “Yes” for the Window Venting option, on both the base and improved screens. Advanced Custom path projects that submit utility bill data should check “Yes” or “No” for the Window Venting option depending on how the home is operated.

After much consideration, a decision has been made to modify the previously stated guideline in an attempt to increase participation in the Program. Effective June 13, 2018 the following policy went into effect:

For Advanced Default path projects and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data, contractors/auditors are no longer required to select “Yes” for window venting. When building energy models in Snugg Pro or OptiMiser contractors/auditors shall be allowed to select either “Yes” or “No” regarding window venting. This determination should be made based on how the home is actually operated. If the homeowner opens the windows to take advantage of the temperature difference between indoors and outdoors to supplement the HVAC system, the contractor/auditor shall select “Yes” for window venting. If the homeowner relies solely on the HVAC system for all the home’s heating and cooling needs, the contractor/auditor shall select “No” for window venting.

No matter what condition the contractor/auditor selects for window venting, the same condition (either “Yes” or “No”) must be selected in the energy model for both the baseline and the improved conditions.

To reiterate, contractor’s and auditors will no longer be required to select “Yes” for window venting on Advanced Default path projects and Advanced Custom path projects that do not submit utility bill data. Instead they should select “Yes” or “No” based on the way the home is actually operated.

Mentoring No Longer Required

Newly trained BPI BAs will no longer need mentoring in order to perform testing for projects. This also applies to new contractors joining the program.

Although mentoring is not required, it is highly recommended

Reminder: New Contractor Participation Agreement

The Contractor Participation Agreement that was updated in 2018 to be more contractor-friendly is now available on the contractor website here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management team if you have questions about any changes.

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy.

If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program.

Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

QC Corner

All Good Things Must Come to an End

It’s hard to believe we are approaching the end of the SCE/SoCalGas Joint Program’s lifecycle. Almost 12,000 homes have gone through the program since its inception. Considering the program’s modest beginning when very few home performance contractors or BPI analysts were in the area, we have all come a very long way helping homeowners save money on utility bills while adding comfort and increasing health and safety in their homes.

Contractors, auditors and their teams should be very proud of their contributions in terms of energy-savings and reduced emissions with the energy-saving measures they installed for their customers.

Since the Joint Utility Program’s inception participants have saved or will save an estimated:

  • 10.5 million kWh of electricity
  • 1 million therms of natural gas equating to reduced greenhouse gas emission from approximately:

           o  32 million miles driven by an average passenger vehicle

           o  Burning 1.5 million gallons of gasoline

Adding to that, the comfort, health, and safety aspects that were provided to homeowners, you all have a lot to feel good about.

Important Upcoming Dates:

August 31, 2018 will be the last day to create new projects and reserve incentive dollars, unless all remaining incentive funding has been exhausted prior to that date. If you miss the August 31 project creation date your project will not be accepted.

October 31, 2018 will be the last day projects may be Post Retrofit submitted to the Program. Based on budgeting and accounting procedures these dates are firm. If you met the August 31 project creation date but missed the October 31 Post Retrofit submission date, your project will not be processed and no incentive will be paid out.

Please take note of these dates and be sure your submissions are made prior to the deadlines to prevent any unsatisfied homeowners or contractors. We encourage all contractors and auditors to submit their projects in a timely manner.

Once projects have been Post Retrofit submitted they will work their way through the review process. If during the review it is determined a contractor/auditor needs to submit additional documentation or perform additional work, those project issues will be accommodated after October 31, but must be completed by November 30.

Program Management will be working alongside ICF and RHA to ensure that all projects are processed in a timely manner before the final deadline. We encourage all contractors and auditors to reach out to their account managers with any questions or concerns as soon as possible. This communication will go a long way in helping to ensure that we close out each and every project before November 30. We understand unexpected issues arise. Alerting your account manager or program manager at RHA will allow us to help you make sure small issues do not turn into big issues.

PLEASE TAKE NOTE: The SoCalGas program is scheduled to operate unchanged through the entirety of 2018 and into the second quarter of 2019. In 2019, the program will be revamped and run by a third-party implementer. At this point the design of the new program not been established.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Top 3 Ways to Introduce Your Customers to REEL Financing

Your customers have a choice when it comes to finding the REEL lender that’s right for them when completing a Home Upgrade project or other energy efficiency improvement. And you have the resources you need to connect your customers to those lenders. Here are a few tips to help you make that connection.

  1. Explain that REEL offers lenders you can trust. REEL financing is promoted by the state of California, with the support of SCE and SoCalGas.
  2. If your customer is a technology user, direct them to GoGreenFinancing.com, where they’ll find everything they need to learn more about REEL—including finding the lender who’s right for them.
  3. If your customer prefers paper, give them a copy of the REEL Lenders Chart (which contains general information about all lenders) or share a copy of the appropriate REEL Lender profiles (which provide detailed information about specific lenders).

Visit GoGreenFinancing.com to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. Or, contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or Email.

Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade provides assistance and incentives for home improvement projects that can reduce energy use and make homes more comfortable. This statewide program is managed locally by utilities and regional energy networks and directed by the California Public Utilities Commission in collaboration with the California Energy Commission. Funding comes from utility customers under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. Incentives are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are effective until the funding is expended or the program is discontinued. Terms and conditions apply. See program rules for details. Programs may be modified or terminated without prior notice. ©2018 Trademarks used with permission and are property of their respective owners. All rights reserved.

 

 

June 4 Program Update

Monday, June 4, 2018

June 4 Program Update

Greetings to all Participating Contractors in the SoCalGas® Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program. As California temperatures begin to heat up, please contact your account management team for any support you need due to increased business. We are excited to see contractors participate in the SoCalGas Only program as we continue the Program into 2019!

SoCalGas Program Updates

Budget Update

As of now, 71% of the SoCalGas Only program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out bi-monthly unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.  

Reminder: New Measures Available!

Three new measures are available in SoCalGas Home Upgrade. Be on the lookout for updated Info Sheets and Incentive Applications.

New Incentive Calculators

New incentive calculators are now available on the contractor website. Measure savings were updated to reflect new/more accurate savings and were also updated to reflect any code changes. Please let your account manager know if you have any questions.

Reminder: New Contractor Participation Agreement

SoCalGas' updated Contractor Participation Agreement is now available on the contractor website and can also be found here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers in order to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management if you have any questions about any changes. 

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program. Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your Account Manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Meet the New GoGreen Financing - Plus: Two New Lenders

The Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program is gearing up for a big summer with GoGreen Financing. In coordination with investor-owned utilities including SCE and SoCalGas, the program will launch new contractor resources to help REEL Participating Contractors market their business and sell larger projects with statewide energy efficiency financing. The contractor resources include a new program flyer, information on financing, talking points and more. With REEL financing and Home Upgrade rebates, more customers can afford the upgrades they want, and your team can sell larger projects.

The new REEL resources coordinate with the recently launched GoGreen Financing brand and website, and the summer 2018 online advertising campaign. The online ads drive homeowners to visit the GoGreen Financing website, where they can select a lender and find a REEL Participating Contractor.

Plus: As of June 1, two new regional lenders have joined the REEL program: Eagle Community Credit Union serving Orange County, and Pasadena Service Federal Credit Union serving the greater San Gabriel Valley. Join us at a meet & greet event to learn more!

Don't miss out on this summer's marketing opportunities. Sign up today.

Visit the GoGreenFinancing.com/residentialcontractors to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. Or, contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or  REEL@frontierenergy.com.

 

 

June 4 Program Update

Monday, June 4, 2018

June 4 Program Update

Thank you to all of the Participating Contractors in the Southern California Edison (SCE) Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program who attended the May Technical Training Workshop! For those of you who were not able to attend, please reach out to your account manager to grab a swag bag containing a Bluetooth speaker and portable device charger. In this newsletter, you will find important updates only for the SCE/SoCalGas Territory. Please reach out to your account management team if you have any questions.

Southern California Electric (SCE)/SoCalGas Program Updates

Budget Update

As of now, 56% of the SCE program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out twice a month unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.

SoCalEdison/SoCalGas Home Upgrade Program Sunset Date

The last day to reserve projects in the SoCalEdison/SoCalGas territory will be August 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST unless program funds are exhausted beforehand. It is imperative that you reserve your projects, receive confirmation as soon as possible, and before you begin construction to protect your company from liability. This will help maintain your good reputation with your customers. The last day to post-retrofit submit projects in this territory will be October 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST.

Deadlines: Program Reservations

To ensure deadlines are clear and concise, please keep in mind the following:

  • All reservations for projects in the SCE/SoCalGas service territory must be submitted by August 31, 2018 by 6 p.m. PST unless program funds are exhausted beforehand.
  • In order to receive an incentive, all projects reserved by August 31, 2018 must be post-retrofit submitted with all required documentation by October 21, 2018.

New Incentive Calculators

New incentive calculators are now available on the contractor website. Measure savings were updated to reflect new code changes and more accurate savings. Please let your account manager know if you have any questions.

New Contractor Participation Agreement

The latest updated Contractor Participation Agreement is now available on the contractor website and can also be found here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers in order to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management team if you have questions about any changes.

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program will continue instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program. Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent cancellation. Please contact your account manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

Reminder: Financing Information 

If a project is being financed, please make sure to indicate this during the post-retrofit process in the WebApp drop down menu.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Meet the New GoGreen Financing - Plus: Two New Lenders! 

The Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program is gearing up for a big summer with GoGreen Financing. In coordination with investor-owned utilities including SCE and SoCalGas, the program will launch new contractor resources to help REEL Participating Contractors market their business and sell larger projects with statewide energy efficiency financing. The contractor resources include a new program flyer, information on financing, talking points and more. With REEL financing and Home Upgrade rebates, more customers can afford the upgrades they want, and your team can sell larger projects.

The new REEL resources coordinate with the recently launched GoGreen Financing brand and website, and the summer 2018 online advertising campaign. The online ads drive homeowners to visit the GoGreen Financing website, where they can select a lender and find a REEL Participating Contractor.

Plus: As of June 1, two new regional lenders have joined the REEL program: Eagle Community Credit Union serving Orange County, and Pasadena Service Federal Credit Union serving the greater San Gabriel Valley. Join us at a meet & greet event to learn more!

Don't miss out on this summer's marketing opportunities. Sign up today.

Visit the GoGreenFinancing.com/residentialcontractors to fill out an application and complete the 1-hour program training online, anytime. Or, contact the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com.

 

 

 

SCG Only - May 1 Program Update

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

May 1 Program Update

Greetings to all Participating Contractors in the SoCalGas® (SCG) Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program. Taking effect now, SoCalGas will have its own special monthly newsletter and will contain updates specific to the SoCalGas Only territory. It will help guide you to exciting upcoming trainings/events and prepare you for any new updates. Also note, with the weather starting to heat up, it's important to stay updated and prepared for the busy season. Please reach out to your account management teams for any questions or if you are in need of a sales refresher!

SoCalGas Program Updates

Budget Update

As of now, 74% of the SoCalGas Only program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out bi-monthly unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.  

Important Reminder: Reserve Projects Before Construction

It is extremely important to reserve and receive confirmation for your projects before you begin construction. Not only does this help ensure that your customer's project qualifies for incentives, it also protects your company from liability and maintains your good reputation with your customers. Participating Contractors will receive bi-weekly budget updates from account managers to help with your planning.

New Measures

Please take note of the following new measures added to the SoCalGas Only Territory:

  • Smart Thermostats - Participating contractors may now add smart thermostats as a stand-alone measure to all projects! This means, the measure will not contribute to the minimum number of measures or the 10% minimum energy savings requirement but will add to the overall incentive. Customers are eligible to receive $100 for the following qualifying smart thermostats: Nest Thermostats (all models), ecobee (Smart Si, ecobee3 and ecobee3 lite, ecobee4), Honeywell LyricTM Wi-Fi Thermostats (Lyric Round - 2nd generation, Lyric T5, Lyric T6).
  • Pool Heater - This energy efficiency measure is the installation of gas-fired pool water heaters having two tier options for the Thermal Efficiency of 84%-89% and 90% or higher. This will be available in both the Advanced Home Upgrade and Home upgrade pathways. It will be considered a stand-alone measure meaning, the measure will not contribute to the minimum number of measures or the 10% minimum energy savings requirement but, will add to the overall incentive. Customers are eligible to receive up to $750 depending on the thermal efficiency.
  • Auto Diverting Tub Spout with TSV - This measure is also available as a stand-alone measure in both project pathways and will be worth $30. Please note this technology cannot be combined with a tankless water heater.

New Contactor Participation Agreement

SoCalGas' latest updated Contractor Participation Agreement is now available on the contractor website and can also be found here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers in order to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management if you have any questions about any changes. 

QC Corner

Get the Most from the Pocket Reference Guide

At the Technical Training on June 6, 2017 copies of the new Pocket Reference Guide (PRG) were distributed to those in attendance. If you have not had a chance to review the PRG, reviewing it will give you valuable insight and information. If you do not have a copy of the PRG, there are two ways to obtain the guide: by contacting your ICF Account Manager for a hard copy of the guide, or by logging into the contractors' website and downloading an electronic PDF version you can store on your phone, tablet or computer.

The PRG is packed with useful information designed to help contractors and auditors easily navigate their way through onsite inspections. Much of the information within the PRG will also be useful to people in your company responsible for submitting documents and information to the Program.

The hard copy is designed to withstand tough use in the field. It is printed on a waterproof stock with a spiral wound binding. All these features make it easy to slip in your pocket, drop in your tool box, or stash in the glove box of your truck.

The PRG was created to follow the order and procedure of an actual onsite inspection. This is helpful for those who do not have a lot of experience with Home Upgrade requirements. In addition to the inspection procedure, highlights of the PRG include:

OptiMiser Energy-Modeling Software User's Guide

The Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program has two approved energy-modeling software products authorized for use in the Advanced Home Upgrade path: OptiMiser® and Snugg Pro. Many of you are familiar with Snugg Pro and the related user's guide produced by the Program. For those of you using OptiMiser, or contemplating its use, we are pleased to announce we will be releasing the OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide very shortly. The guide will be available in time for the technical training scheduled for May 16. Once complete, the OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide will be available for download in the energy modeling resources section of the contractor resources website.

The OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide is designed to help contractors and auditors navigate the software while using Program-approved values within their energy-models. The guide includes direction for modeling default path projects, custom projects and custom projects with utility bill calibration. In addition, there are useful tables, formulas, and default value tables.

If you have not had a chance to use OptiMiser, or are interested in what it can do for your business, OptiMiser offers 30-day free trials. Once you sign-up you will be able to build energy-models from simple to complex, calculate energy-savings information, utilize the report functions, and much more.

For more information go to https://optimiserenergy.com/ and click on the GET OPTIMISER link near the top-right side of the page.

 

QC Tools Make Capturing and Calculating Audit Data a Breeze

When it comes to creating precise energy models nothing beats obtaining fast, accurate and repeatable results. That's why the Program created and made available to contractors an Excel document titled "QC Tools." The document was created for use during an audit (either test-in or test-out) and gives the auditor the ability to record project information.

The QC Tools has many built-in functions and formulas that make quick work out of complex calculations. The document is comprised of the following seven tabs, each with its own purpose:

  • Introduction
  • Combustion Safety
  • Dimensions
  • Duct Leakage Calculator
  • Air Leakage and MV Calculator
  • Intermittent MV Hours-Per-Day
  • Intermittent MV Minutes-Per-Hour

Once back at the office, the values from the QC Tools can be quickly and easily plugged into the energy-modeling software of your choice. For contractors not using energy-modeling software, the QC Tool is an indispensable tool to help you get the most for your customer.

The Introduction Tab gives a detailed description of each of the other six tabs, specific examples of their use, and informs the reader if that tab is required by the Program to be completed.

The Combustion Safety Tab is the form used by the RHA's Energy Field Technicians. Use it to document CAS/CAZ details for attended and un-attended appliances. Color-coding red and green results easily identify pass and fail criteria. A simple click of a button resets the form allowing it to be used repeatedly.

The Dimensions Tab lets you easily calculate conditioned floor area, volume, average ceiling height, wall and window area by orientation, and window area as a percentage of wall area. These calculations are performed by entering a minimal number of dimensions.

Duct Leakage Calculator Tab: By entering just three values, the duct leakage calculator calculates system airflow, duct leakage percentage, and whether the system meets the 10% maximum leakage requirement. This tab can calculate two separate duct systems at once and calculates system airflow based on cooling tonnage or heating output, whichever is greater.

Air Leakage and MV Calculator Tab: There are two calculations that take place on this form. First, values are entered in the white cells on step 1 to determine if mechanical ventilation is required, recommended, or is not an issue. If mechanical ventilation is required or recommended in step 1, enter values in the white cells in step 2. The calculator will determine the amount of minimum continuous mechanical ventilation airflow required or recommended.

Intermittent MV Hours-Per-Day Tab: If mechanical ventilation is required, you can set up the MV fan to run for a specific number of hours per day as opposed to running 24/7. By using the MV airflow required and entering the desired number of hours of operation, one can easily determine the correct fan airflow for intermittent use.

Intermittent Minutes-Per-Hr. Tab: Just as with the Hours-Per-Day above, you can set up the MV fan to run for a specific number of minutes per hour as opposed to running continuously every hour. By using the MV airflow required and entering the desired number of minutes per hour of operation, one can easily determine the correct fan airflow for intermittent use.

 

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Lead with the value of energy efficient equipment

Do your team members start by offering standard equipment, then "upsell" with a pitch for more energy efficient models that qualify for Home Upgrade? There may be a better way. Why not lead with the value of energy efficient models? By starting with equipment that saves more energy or qualifies for utility incentives like Home Upgrade, your team can build customer trust in efficient models. And with financing from the state-sponsored Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program, your customers can finance single-measures, whole house upgrades, and even use up to 30% of the loan amount to finance other related home improvements alongside efficiency measures. 

Want to offer REEL to your customers? Sign up today.

Become a REEL Participating Contractor by visiting www.thecheef.com/contractors, or learn more by contacting the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com.

Coming Soon: GoGreen Financing Resources and New Lenders

As a result of continued success with customer participation, the REEL program is growing. The program just launched a new GoGreen Financing brand and a revamped homeowner-facing website, with summer 2018 advertising and contractor resources coming next month. Plus, the program is adding two new local lenders - stay tuned for more details.

BPI Training

Tuesday, May 8 - Friday, May 11
Irvine, CA (Exact Location TBA)

Register Here!

Are you or a member of your staff looking to become BPI BA certified? Participating Contractors with a BPI BA contractor on staff are eligible to offer Advanced Home Upgrade projects to their customers for larger incentives and higher energy savings.

This year, our BPI certifying partner is offering a blended learning experience meaning, less time in the classroom! This home energy auditor course introduces building science principles and offers hands-on blower door training. Includes a 16-hour webinar, field training with equipment (in person), practice questions, and written field certification exams. Don't forget to contact your Account Manager to receive your discount code to instantly receive $150 off the retail price. More details to come via email to registrants.

 

Technical Training

Wednesday, May 16
8:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Energy Resource Center
9240 Firestone Blvd.
Downey, CA 90241

Join us for Technical Training! Breakfast and lunch will be provided to attendees. Click here to Register.

Specific topics that will be covered include:

  • Energy Modeling Updates - Optimizer Handbook
  • Updated Mechanical Ventilation Guidelines
  • Documentation Reminders for Projects and Contractors
  • Water Heaters and Uniform Energy Factors
  • Many More!

 

Southern California Electric (SCE)/SoCalGas - May 1 Program Update

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

May 1 Program Update

Greetings to all Participating Contractors in the Southern California Edison (SCE) Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program. In this newsletter, you will find updates only for the joint SCE/SoCalGas® Territory. Please take note of all the upcoming trainings and reach out to your account management team for any questions.

Southern California Electric (SCE)/SoCalGas Program Updates

Budget Update

As of now, 54% of the SCE program incentive budget is remaining. Budget updates are scheduled to go out bi-weekly unless stated otherwise. Please contact your account managers to see how you can take advantage of the remaining incentive budget.

Important Reminder: Reserve Projects Before Construction
Due to the limited incentive funds for 2018, it is extremely important to reserve and receive confirmation for your projects before you begin construction. Not only does this help ensure that your customer's project qualifies for incentives, it also protects your company from liability and maintains your good reputation with your customers. Participating Contractors will receive bi-weekly budget updates from account managers to help with your planning.

Important Reminder: BOM Remediation Program Change

Previously, when black organic matter (BOM) was identified in a household, the program required remediation of the BOM. The Building Performance Institute (BPI) the program has determined this process will no longer be required.

When a contractor, auditor or Energy Field Technician identifies BOM, a Notice of Unsatisfactory Conditions (NOUC) must be completed. The comments section of the NOUC should be used to describe the BOM, its location, and a recommendation that it be inspected and remediated. The completed NOUC must be signed by the homeowner or the "Customer refused to sign" box shall be checked. One copy of the form is to be left with the homeowner, one copy is for the contractor or auditor's files and one copy must be submitted to the program. A blank copy of the Notice of Unsatisfactory Condition can be found on the contractor website here.

New Contractor Participation Agreements

The latest updated Contractor Participation Agreement for SCE/SoCalGas is now available on the contractor website and can also be found here. This document must be signed and returned to account managers in order to remain active in the program. Please ask your account management if you have any questions about any changes.

QC Corner

Get the Most from the Pocket Reference Guide

At the Technical Training on June 6, 2017, copies of the new Pocket Reference Guide (PRG) were distributed to those in attendance. If you have not had a chance to review the PRG, reviewing it will give you valuable insight and information. If you do not have a copy of the PRG, there are two ways to obtain the guide: by contacting your ICF Account Manager for a hard copy of the guide, or by logging into the contractors' website and downloading an electronic PDF version you can store on your phone, tablet or computer.

The PRG is packed with useful information designed to help contractors and auditors easily navigate their way through onsite inspections. Much of the information within the PRG will also be useful to people in your company responsible for submitting documents and information to the Program.

The hard copy is designed to withstand tough use in the field. It is printed on a waterproof stock with a spiral wound binding. All these features make it easy to slip in your pocket, drop in your tool box or stash in the glove box of your truck.

The PRG was created to follow the order and procedure of an actual onsite inspection. This is helpful for those who do not have a lot of experience with Home Upgrade requirements. In addition to the inspection procedure, highlights of the PRG include:

 

OptiMiser Energy-Modeling Software User's Guide

The Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program has two approved energy-modeling software products authorized for use in the Advanced Home Upgrade path: OptiMiser® and Snugg Pro. Many of you are familiar with Snugg Pro and the related user's guide produced by the Program. For those of you using OptiMiser, or contemplating its use, we are pleased to announce we will be releasing the OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide very shortly. The guide will be available in time for the technical training scheduled for May 16. Once complete, the OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide will be available for download in the energy modeling resources section of the contractor resources website.

The OptiMiser Energy Modeling Guide is designed to help contractors and auditors navigate the software while using Program-approved values within their energy-models. The guide includes direction for modeling default path projects, custom projects and custom projects with utility bill calibration. In addition, there are useful tables, formulas, and default value tables.

If you have not had a chance to use OptiMiser, or are interested in what it can do for your business, OptiMiser offers 30-day free trials. Once you sign-up you will be able to build energy-models from simple to complex, calculate energy-savings information, utilize the report functions, and much more.

For more information go to https://optimiserenergy.com/ and click on the GET OPTIMISER link near the top-right side of the page.

 

QC Tools Make Capturing and Calculating Audit Data a Breeze

When it comes to creating precise energy models nothing beats obtaining fast, accurate and repeatable results. That's why the Program created and made available to contractors an Excel document titled "QC Tools." The document was created for use during an audit (either test-in or test-out) and gives the auditor the ability to record project information.

The QC Tools has many built-in functions and formulas that make quick work out of complex calculations. The document is comprised of the following seven tabs, each with its own purpose:

  • Introduction
  • Combustion Safety
  • Dimensions
  • Duct Leakage Calculator
  • Air Leakage and MV Calculator
  • Intermittent MV Hours-Per-Day
  • Intermittent MV Minutes-Per-Hour

Once back at the office, the values from the QC Tools can be quickly and easily plugged into the energy-modeling software of your choice. For contractors not using energy-modeling software, the QC Tools is an indispensable tool to help you get the most for your customer.

The Introduction Tab

gives a detailed description of each of the other six tabs, specific examples of their use, and informs the reader if that tab is required by the Program to be completed.

The Combustion Safety Tab

is the form used by the RHA's Energy Field Technicians. Use it to document CAS/CAZ details for attended and un-attended appliances. Color-coding red and green results easily identify pass and fail criteria. A simple click of a button resets the form allowing it to be used repeatedly.

The Dimensions Tab

lets you easily calculate conditioned floor area, volume, average ceiling height, wall and window area by orientation, and window area as a percentage of wall area. These calculations are performed by entering a minimal number of dimensions.

Duct Leakage Calculator Tab:

By entering just three values, the duct leakage calculator calculates system airflow, duct leakage percentage, and whether the system meets the 10% maximum leakage requirement. This tab can calculate two separate duct systems at once and calculates system airflow based on cooling tonnage or heating output, whichever is greater.

Air Leakage and MV Calculator Tab: There are two calculations that take place on this form. First, values are entered in the white cells on step 1 to determine if mechanical ventilation is required, recommended, or is not an issue. If mechanical ventilation is required or recommended in step 1, enter values in the white cells in step 2. The calculator will determine the amount of minimum continuous mechanical ventilation airflow required or recommended.

Intermittent MV Hours-Per-Day Tab:

If mechanical ventilation is required, you can set up the MV fan to run for a specific number of hours per day as opposed to running 24/7. By using the MV airflow required and entering the desired number of hours of operation, one can easily determine the correct fan airflow for intermittent use.

Intermittent Minutes-Per-Hr. Tab: Just as with the Hours-Per-Day above, you can set up the MV fan to run for a specific number of minutes per hour as opposed to running continuously every hour. By using the MV airflow required and entering the desired number of minutes per hour of operation, one can easily determine the correct fan airflow for intermittent use.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Lead with the value of energy efficient equipment

Do your team members start by offering standard equipment, then "upsell" with a pitch for more energy efficient models that qualify for Home Upgrade? There may be a better way. Why not lead with the value of energy efficient models? By starting with equipment that saves more energy or qualifies for utility incentives like Home Upgrade, your team can build customer trust in efficient models. And with financing from the state-sponsored Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program, your customers can finance single-measures, whole house upgrades, and even use up to 30% of the loan amount to finance other related home improvements alongside efficiency measures. 

Want to offer REEL to your customers? Sign up today.

Become a REEL Participating Contractor by visiting www.thecheef.com/contractors, or learn more by contacting the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com.

Coming Soon: GoGreen Financing Resources and New Lenders

As a result of continued success with customer participation, the REEL program is growing. The program just launched a new GoGreen Financing brand and a revamped homeowner-facing website, with summer 2018 advertising and contractor resources coming next month. Plus, the program is adding two new local lenders - stay tuned for more details.

 

BPI Training

Tuesday, May 8 - Friday, May 11
Irvine, CA (Exact Location TBA)

Register Here!

Are you or a member of your staff looking to become BPI BA certified? Participating Contractors with a BPI BA contractor on staff are eligible to offer Advanced Home Upgrade projects to their customers for larger incentives and higher energy savings.

This year, our BPI certifying partner is offering a blended learning experience meaning, less time in the classroom! This home energy auditor course introduces building science principles and offers hands-on blower door training. Includes a 16-hour webinar, field training with equipment (in person), practice questions, and written field certification exams. Don't forget to contact your Account Manager to receive your discount code to instantly receive $150 off the retail price. More details to come via email to registrants.

 

Technical Training

Wednesday, May 16
8:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Energy Resource Center
9240 Firestone Blvd.
Downey, CA 90241

Join us for Technical Training! Breakfast and lunch will be provided to attendees. Click here to Register.

Specific topics that will be covered include:

  • Energy Modeling Updates - Optimizer Handbook
  • Updated Mechanical Ventilation Guidelines
  • Documentation Reminders for Projects and Contractors
  • Water Heaters and Uniform Energy Factors
  • Many More!

 

April 3 Program Update

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

April 3 Program Update

Greetings to all Participating Contractors in the Southern California Edison (SCE) and SoCalGas® Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program. With spring already here, we are happy to inform you of the program updates to keep you ready for the season. Thank you to all contractors who have been actively inquiring about the Program and are eager to give their customers energy savings and comfort. Please note important updates below and as always, reach out to your account management team with any questions.

SoCalGas Program Updates

Please note that the updates listed for the SCE/SoCalGas program below also apply to the SoCalGas only program. If you have any questions, please contact your Account Management team.

Southern California Electric (SCE)/SoCalGas Program Updates

Mold Remediation

Previously, when black organic matter (BOM) was identified in a household, the program required remediation of the BOM. Contractors were required to submit an abatement letter from a qualified abatement company describing the type of matter that was found, the location, and how it was remediated prior to the project moving forward. After an in-depth consultation with the Building Performance Institute (BPI) the program has determined this process will no longer be required.

The program still strongly recommends in cases where BOM is discovered, that the BOM be inspected and remediated by a qualified abatement company.

When the contractor, auditor or Energy Field Technician identifies BOM, a Notice of Unsatisfactory Conditions (NOUC) must be completed. The comments section of the NOUC should be used to describe the BOM, its location, and a recommendation that it be inspected and remediated. The completed NOUC must be signed by the homeowner or the "Customer refused to sign" box shall be checked. One copy of the form is to be left with the homeowner, one copy is for the contractor or auditor's files and one copy must be submitted to the program. A blank copy of the Notice of Unsatisfactory Condition can be found on the contractor website here.

New Efficiency Rating for Water Heaters

In June 2017, the Department of Energy (DOE) instituted new rules that regulate the testing and rating of water heaters. In the past, water heaters were rated by Energy Factor (EF). Until recently, EF was the only rating method used to determine water heating efficiency. New test methods and labeling requirements now in effect utilize Uniform Energy Factor (UEF) as a measure of efficiency.

Effective immediately, the following policy regarding water heater efficiency will replace the current program policy:

  • ENERGY STAR® has minimum specifications for water heaters rated in both EF and UEF. Any water heater submitted to the Program rated in UEF which meets the current minimum ENERGY STAR UEF standard shall be approved by the program.
  • Any water heater that is rated in EF and meets the current program minimum EF standard shall continue to be approved by the program. UEF criteria will only be used when an EF rating is not available.
  • When a water heater is installed in an Advanced Home Upgrade Path project and it is rated in UEF, the auditor shall enter the actual UEF value of the water heater into the energy modeling software program if it meets the current ENERGY STAR minimum UEF value.
  • When a water heater is installed in an Advanced Home Upgrade project and it is rated in EF, the auditor shall enter the actual EF value of the water heater into the energy modeling software program if it meets the current program minimum EF value.
  • When a water heater is installed in a Home Upgrade project and it is rated in UEF, the homeowner or contractor will be eligible to receive an incentive if it meets the current ENERGY STAR minimum UEF value. The incentive value will be based on the lowest dollar value for water heating equipment (of the same type) paid by the program.
  • When a water heater is installed in a Home Upgrade project and it is rated in EF, the homeowner or contractor will be eligible to receive an incentive based on the current incentive value for the type and efficiency rating of the water heater installed.

Energy Modeling and Uniform Energy Factor

For quite some time, the DOE has been working on a change to the way water heaters are tested and rated. Effective June 2017, DOE instituted their new procedures. Since then, software developers and programmers have been hard at work integrating the DOE's new rating system into various energy modeling software programs.

The behind-the-scenes professionals at Snugg Pro and OptiMiser have been making subtle but important changes to their software. Both software programs now accept water heater efficiency with the traditional EF rating or the new UEF rating.

Depending on when a water heater was produced, its efficiency may be rated in either EF or UEF. No matter how the unit is rated, Snugg Pro and OptiMiser can model the equipment appropriately. For instance, if the existing water heater is rated in EF and the new water is rated in UEF either software can convert and still make the correct calculations. Just be sure to accurately record the efficiency of the water heaters (both existing and new) using the proper rating and the software will be able to do the rest.

In the two examples below the existing storage tank water heater has an EF rating of .52, and the new tankless water heater has a UEF of .87:

OptiMiser DHW (water heater) section:

Snugg Pro (water heater) section:

SnuggPro

Snugg Pro has launched the new DOE UEF for water heating equipment. The new UEF rating will show on the Snugg Pro app along with the old EF rating to keep use simple for contractors. While using the app you don't need to convert the old EF to the new UEF, just use the toggle buttons to indicate which factor that you are using. Then, enter the EF from the old water heater on the base and leave the improved UEF blank if you have not chosen a new model and wish to use the new rating. 

In addition, efficiency and performance for ENERGY STAR certified water heating equipment may be evaluated using two different methods. A water heater can be certified as ENERGY STAR by meeting EF, Standby Loss, and/or Thermal Efficiency criteria or by meeting UEF criteria. Although these performance metrics are different, certification as ENERGY STAR by either method requires equivalent efficiency. Consumers should not directly compare EF values to UEF values.

Updated Calculators

Updated Incentive Calculators are available on the contractor website to reflect the latest updates for 2018. Please make sure you are implementing the latest calculators with your sales/processing staff to ensure accuracy.

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

To ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program is now instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program. Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent this. Please contact your Account Manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

SoCalREN is Now Open

The County of Los Angeles/Southern California Regional Energy Network (SoCalREN) Energy Upgrade CaliforniaHome Upgrade Program Contractor Portal is now open for you to create new project reservations. This is for customers in LA County who receive service from both SCE and SoCalGas. Updated program documents are available for download on the Program Resources page.

Financing Updates from CHEEF/REEL

Incorporate Monthly Payment Options with REEL Financing

Help avoid sticker shock with estimated monthly payment options. Did you know 75% of energy efficiency projects over $10,000 are completed with some type of financing? Just like a mortgage or car payment, financed monthly payment options help bigger purchases seem more accessible.

With state-sponsored Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) financing, customers can finance 100% of their project costs. This enables contractors to provide lower estimated monthly payment options. REEL lenders provide estimated online payment calculators and 24-hour credit approval, enabling projects to get started quickly.

Want to offer REEL to your customers? Sign up today.

Become a REEL Participating Contractor by visiting www.thecheef.com/contractors, or learn more by contacting the REEL Contractor Support team at 1-800-484-0109 or REEL@frontierenergy.com.

Contact Us: 855-355-6675 | Email Us | Visit Our Website

Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade provides assistance and incentives for home improvement projects that can reduce energy use and make homes more comfortable. This statewide program is managed locally by utilities and regional energy networks and directed by the California Public Utilities Commission in collaboration with the California Energy Commission. Funding comes from utility customers under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. Incentives are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are effective until the funding is expended or the program is discontinued. Terms and conditions apply. See program rules for details. Programs may be modified or terminated without prior notice. ©2018 Trademarks used with permission and are property of their respective owners. All rights reserved.

 

 

March 1 Program Update

Thursday, March 1, 2018

March 1 Program Update

Greetings to all Participating Contractors in the Southern California Edison (SCE) and SoCalGas® Energy Upgrade California® Home Upgrade Program. As the busy spring season approaches, Account Managers are here to help support all Participating Contractors with project volume and targeting strategies. Below are important reminders and tips to get everybody fully prepared for more project submittals. Contact your Account Manager if you have questions about any of the topics. 

SoCalGas Program Updates

Important Reminder: Project Eligibility-Energy Savings

For all Advanced Home Upgrade projects, both therm savings and electric savings must be achieved in order for the project to be eligible for 100% of the final incentive. In SoCalGas/LADWP territories, customers are eligible for 65% of the final incentive for Advanced Home Upgrade projects that only produce electric savings and 35% of the final incentive for projects that only produce gas savings. In SoCalGas/municipal electric provider territories, customers are not eligible for incentives for Advanced Home Upgrade projects that only produce electric savings.

Please note that the updates listed for the SCE/SoCalGas program below also apply to the SoCalGas-only program. If you have any questions, please contact your Account Management team.

Southern California Electric (SCE)/SoCalGas® Program Updates

Important Reminder: Reserve Projects Before Construction
Due to the limited incentive funds for 2018, it is extremely important to reserve and receive confirmation for your projects before you begin construction. Not only does this help ensure that your customer's project qualifies for incentives, it also protects your company from liability and maintains your good reputation with your customers. Participating Contractors will receive bi-weekly budget updates from account managers to help plans.

2018 Contractor Participation Agreements

An updated and fully signed 2018 SCE/SoCalGas Contractor Participation Agreement (CPA) must be on file for every Participating Contractor in order to submit projects. Account Managers will reach out to those who need to still need the updated documents on file. You may also contact your Account Manager if you have any questions.  

Reminder: 90-Day Cancellation Policy

In order to ensure that ineligible projects do not tie up reserved incentive funds, the program is now instituting a 90-day project cancellation policy. If a project has not been completed within 90 days from the project reservation date, the project is subject to cancellation by the program. Participating Contractors at risk of getting their projects cancelled will be notified well ahead of time so that they are able to take action to prevent this. Please contact your Account Manager if you have any questions or concerns about any at-risk projects.

Reminder: OptiMiser

If you plan on using OptiMiser for energy modeling, please contact your Account Manager for further assistance.

REEL Section

REEL can now finance even more. See what's new!

New measures are eligible for financing through the Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) Program. REEL has always been a financing option for Home Upgrade projects and other eligible measures, but it's now even more flexible. As of March 5, you can offer REEL for Home Upgrade projects and the following new measures:

  • Whole house fan
  • Energy Star clothes dryer, dishwasher, and freezer
  • Pool pump motor
  • Air cleaner/purifier

Check out the updated, searchable eligible measures list online.

As always, you can continue using REEL to finance popular Home Upgrade measures, such as insulation, air conditioning, duct work, furnaces, water heaters, and windows. 

Become a REEL Participating Contractor today by visiting www.thecheef.com/contractors, or learn more by contacting Frontier Energy at 

1-800-484-0109 or Email.

QC Corner

SoCalGas Program Reviews

As of January 1, 2018, Richard Heath & Associates Inc. (RHA) was given the responsibility of reviewing projects submitted to the SoCalGas® Program. For more than six years, RHA has been performing reviews for projects submitted to the SCE/SoCalGas service territories giving them valuable experience that will transfer to the SoCalGas Program. Most contactors will notice very little change when it comes to the desktop review portion of their projects.

From time to time, RHA's review team may reach out to a contractor or an auditor when a question or an issue arises on a project. Depending on the issue(s), you may receive an email or a phone call from one of the reviewers to discuss the situation as part of our Collaborative QC Process (CQC). RHA has been utilizing the CQC process in the SCE/SoCalGas program since January of 2015. This process has been quite helpful in communicating detailed information so contractors can easily understand what is needed in order for them to perform the work or provide whatever information or documentation is required to move a project forward. 

If you have any questions regarding the review process or the CQC process, please feel free to contact

  • Daniel Galvez, Home Upgrade QA/QC Program Manager: Email

Speed Up Incentive Processing

To better serve our contractors, the program creates detailed reports complied from data on each project submitted to the Home Upgrade program. This data provides valuable information that is used to identify areas that we, as a program, need to focus on when it comes to Technical Training and contractor communications. One of the more useful aspects of the data collected is a list of items that cause a project to go to Appeal or Pending Contractor Action status. We have created two documents that act as reminders for particular issues a contractor should be on the lookout for. These documents are located on the contractor's website and are updated on a regular basis.

We have completed our review for calendar year 2017. Below we have included the top three field-identified issues, and the top three QA/QC review issues from 2017. A more comprehensive list can be found within the following documents: 

Top Three Field Issues for 2017:

  • Mechanical Ventilation
  • Gas Leaks and
  • PACM/Asbestos

Top Three Review Issues for 2017:

  • Energy Modeling Issues
  • Missing Documentation and
  • Missing Vision Data

As the contractor makes their last trip to the home, special care should be taken to ensure that the Top 10 Field-Identified QC Issues have all been addressed prior to leaving the site. When the project is Post Retrofit submitted, take a few extra moments to be certain all the items listed on the Top QA/QC Review Issues That May Delay Incentive Payment have been addressed. By following these simple steps on all your projects, there is a good chance you can reduce return trips to the home and expedite incentive payment to your customer.

Supercharge Your Building's Air Sealing

One of the first principles taught in Building Science is the importance of air sealing. Controlling the infiltration or exfiltration of a building can increase energy efficiency by allowing the HVAC system to work more effectively while at the same time improving indoor air quality. Maintaining a tight building envelope is essential in the world of true whole home performance.

Over time, the process of air sealing has remained the same; caulk windows and doors, add weather stripping, close-off soffits and open building cavities, seal recessed lighting and electrical boxes, as well as pipe and wiring penetrations. For the most part, contractors have performed these jobs the same way for decades. While the sealing products have changed over time, the process itself has remained the same - that is, until now.

The folks at AeroBarrier have revolutionized how to air seal a building. Their process is quite simple and might cause you to ask yourself, "why didn't I think of that?" Keep in mind that the AeroBarrier process (sometimes referred to as AeroSeal) is designed for new construction and gut renovations, not occupied homes. If you find yourself working on a project where a major renovation is taking place and the occupant's belongings have been removed, you might consider offering this product to your client.

The AeroBarrier process is designed to seal gaps as large as ½-inch down to gaps the size of a human hair. The way it works is quite simple. A series of spray nozzles are arranged throughout the home and an exterior door is fit with a standard blower door. Before beginning the process, a baseline blower door reading is taken. The home is then pressurized with the blower door and the spray nozzles are turned on and emit a fine mist of AeroBarrier's sealant. With a higher pressure inside the home than outdoors, the mist is forced from the home's interior through gaps left by the construction process.

By pressurizing the home, the sealant flows through all gaps (many not identified or addressed by conventional air sealing methods). As the mist passes through the gaps, it deposits itself there and begins to close off the opening. The more the sealant flows through the opening, the smaller the gap becomes until it is completely sealed off. While the process is taking place, technicians monitor the data from the blower door and chart the tightening of the home in real time, giving the contractor measured results in very impressive ACH values. AeroBarrier estimates a typical single-family home might take four hours to complete the process from start to finish. By performing this process, contractors will no longer have to crawl through attics and crawlspaces to identify and seal each gap on an individual basis while still obtaining questionable results.

This process has been in development and improved over a number of years. Multiple case studies are available, as AeroBarrier has worked in conjunction with U.S. Department of Energy, Western Cooling Efficiency Center at U.C. Davis, Alliance for Residential Building Innovation, Habitat for Humanity and others to develop and fine-tune this process. For more information visit the AeroBarrier website.  

NOTE:  This is not an endorsement nor an advertisement for AeroBarrier, their products, or process. The content herein this section is meant for informational purposes only. The Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade Program, sponsored by SCE and SoCalGas, attempts to keep participating contractors and auditors informed about the latest advances in emerging technologies and products related to whole home energy efficiency.

 

 

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