An energy audit is an inspection, survey and analysis of energy flows for energy conservation in a building, process or system to reduce the amount of energy input into the system without negatively affecting the output.
The term energy audit can be used to describe a broad range of investigations from a quick walk-through to a comprehensive analysis of the energy consumption of an occupied building or facility. They can be very powerful tools when used to their full potential.
Firstly, they establish a baseline for the building against which any deviations can be measured. Consumption profiles can be used for high-level diagnostics. A comparison to previous profiles will highlight any increases or decreases in end use loads, which can inform the areas for further investigation; this may lead to uncovering related issues around occupant comfort, air quality and day lighting levels. In some cases it is very difficult to establish a baseline which can indicate other issues such as poor interfacing between systems, commissioning problems or maintenance issues.