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Energy Audit Standards

by John Herbert | Director

Not all energy audits are equal - therefore it is worth taking a moment to review the different types of energy audit. 

There is no universally accepted standard that sets out the scope for conducting an energy audit, so I have undertaken to write this brief article to help explain the different types and highlight the advantages and disadvantages of each.

There are three basic types, or levels of energy audit, namely:

Primarily the major difference between each type is the quantity of data collected, and measured. In turn this impacts the time required to conduct the audit, the time taken to analyzed the data, and hence the cost.

Each type or level is increasingly sophisticated, starting from the simplest walk-through audit up to the investment grade audit.

Walk-through Energy Audit

A walk-though audit as its name implies involves a walking tour of the premises, where the auditor inspects the energy related systems. Energy data if available for one or more years would be requested for analysis.

Sample readings and measurements are taken, including power, lighting level, thermal comfort are recorded. EMO (Energy Management Opportunities) and findings are provided in written report for implementation by your management team.


Advantages of the walk-though energy audit include faster results and lower cost. EMO's can be implement faster.

During the walk-through audit if the auditor uncovers EMO (Energy Management Opportunities) that could benfit from a comprehensive audit , the auditor may well recommend a more sophisticated audit for a specific part of a system or process.


Not as sophisticated as a comprehensive energy audit, less data collected and analysed.

Comprehensive Energy Audit

As known as a standard energy audit. This audit involves a longer more detailed investigation than the walk-through audit. Energy data if available for three or more years is requested for analysis.  This type of audit is not warranted for the majority of installations.


The standard energy audit is more detailed than the walk-through audit, more data is collected and analysed. Being more through less likely to overlook more complex EMO's


The standard energy audit takes the auditor more time, data loggers are used to collect additional data - therefore the is more expensive than the walk through audit. Often time consuming data collection is far to too exhaustive to add value.

Investment Grade Energy Audit

The investment grade energy audit is the most sophisticated of all the type of energy audit. It requires detailed energy modellling, analysis of the facility, and energy meter data for several years. To learn more about investment grade audits click here.


A very comprehensive energy assessment of the facility and its energy footprint, no stone is left unturned in the search for EMO's (Energy Management Opportunites). Suitable for capital intensive investment programmes.


Very detailed, but time consuming. The detailed energy modelling and analysis requires many manhours. Time to market opportunities may be lost.



The resulting output or deliverable from every energy audit investigation is the energy audit report.

This report needs to be a meaningful document comprising the following basic elements:

  • Information about the energy systems and condition
  • Fuel usage 
  • Energy usage summary, with charts
  • EMO's (Opportunities to save money)



Further information

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