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Energy and Sustainability Division

SCEIP Contractor Newsletter - Fall 2021

Tricks and Treats - A SCEIP Participating Contractor Event

We are having an “Open House” the last week of October

Please come by the Division office at 2300 County Center Dr. Suite A105

  • Any day October 25th – 30th
  • Anytime between 8am – 5pm
  • At your convenience
  • Costumes are welcomed

Tricks and Treats will be available to thank you for helping our Sonoma County Property Owners

“Bee” Part of the Solution

It’s that time of year when the season is changing.

We may find our focus on Fires, Drought, PSPS events, and don’t forget COVID…all brewing in the same cauldron.  Property owners are looking at each of these issues and are trying to read the magic eight ball to see if they will also need a new HVAC, Water Heater, Battery Backup or Roof. When the winds blow and they hear the howling of wind, they just might think of new efficient windows, or fire hardening their homes.  When the rain comes they may think of a new roof, if no rain comes - they may start to think about water saving drip irrigation systems, grey water systems, and ways to harden their homes.

What does this mean for you and your business? Hopefully it means your business will be very busy.  What we can do for you during this time is to continue to provide you marketing materials that allow your clients an easy way to find financing for their improvements.  We will continue to keep our list of Participating Contracts current on our website, and we will continue to educate property owners about our services and the benefits your business can provide them.

Over 170,000 Tax Bills are in the mail to property owners - all with our “Bee” Part of the Solution in Sonoma County message- working together (like bee’s in the hive) we will make a difference. That means all of us at SCEIP will “Bee” involved in helping you grow your business - we would love to see you during our Open House Tricks and Treats Week - October 25th through 30th.

Contractors Installing Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) – Don’t Get Stung!

Beginning November 1, 2021, Battery Energy Storage Systems or BESS are required to be contracted and installed by a C-10, B, or A licensed contractor.  This applies to all new contracts on projects entered into on and after November 1, 2021, AND for work occurring on and after November 1, 2021.  For more information, see Business and Professions Code section 7059.

How does that affect you as a SCEIP contractor?  If you hold a current A, B, or C10 license, this requirement does not affect your customers applying for financing.  All other contractors will be required to partner with a contractor licensed to perform BESS installations.  However, the contractor must become participating with SCEIP and if they do not meet the criteria for being ‘local’, a bid from at least one local company must be obtained.  Refer to the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program Contractor Standards and Information for additional details.

Representatives at the SCEIP office are available to help work through the details with you and your clients.  Interested in finding a participating contractor to partner with?  Come join a quarterly contractor mixer!

Consultations Aren’t Just for Homeowners

The Energy and Sustainability Division has a long history of offering consultations for those going solar, rebuilding, and those considering energy, water, resiliency, or seismic strengthening projects.  Did you know that we also offer no-cost consultations for contractors?  In addition to meeting with you about training and marketing for SCEIP Financing, we can also help you navigate current rebates and incentives that may be available for your client’s projects.  Our experts on staff can also advise on coupling funding options such as multiple financing mechanisms to get projects done.  For example, certain financing may only fund certain projects.  By breaking down the improvements, we can determine which improvements can be financed by SCEIP, Sonoma Clean Power, or other funding.   Let us help you assist your clients in getting the work that they want and need done.

Not a Participating Contractor…

In addition to great newsletter content, participating contractors have access to training, marketing materials and website listing at no-cost.  To learn how you can take advantage of these benefits contact our office at (707) 565-6470 or download the Contractor Standards and Guidelines 

Resources for Contractors: 

Are Your Clients Missing Out on Rebates?

Looking to grow your business and offer rebates for work that you may already be doing?  We are pleased to inform you that licensed contractors in Sonoma County (including all incorporated cities and towns) are eligible to participate in the Bay Area Regional Energy Network (BayREN) residential energy efficiency rebate programs. These programs are administered by a local government collaboration and funded by the California Public Utilities Commission using Public Purpose funds.

These programs include

  • Home+ Program – Up to $5,000 in rebates for insulation, duct replacement, furnaces and water heaters.
  • Home Energy Score - $200 rebate to conduct US Department of Energy assessment.

Sonoma Clean Power’s Advanced Energy Center Open Now! Obtain Free Customer Leads and Requests for Bids!  New Contractors Welcomed

Contractors looking to…

  • Receive pre-qualified customer leads with no acquisition costs?
  • Offer lower cost equipment?
  • Become a certified installer for free?
  • Increase their scope of work?

The Advanced Energy Center is open to the public now – walk-in or book a free tour! The Advanced Energy Center located at 741 4th Street in downtown Santa Rosa offers discounts on a wide range of energy efficiency equipment. Customers visit the Center to learn and select equipment they want in their homes or businesses. The Advanced Energy Center wants you to join their Contractor Network and receive customers’ requests for bids. Small and large projects are available, and we welcome all contractor companies to sign up here – requirements are simple: hold a valid CSLB license and name Sonoma Clean Power as additionally insured. 

Advanced Energy Center products include…

  • Induction cooktops
  • Heat pump mini splits
  • Heat pump water heaters
  • EV Chargers
  • Solar Batteries
  • …and more!

Customers and their contractors can increase the scope of their projects by taking advantage of 0% loans up to $10,000 for 10 years paid back through their PG&E bill. Contractors can offer pre-qualified customers financing by watching our 1-hour On-Bill Financing Contractor Certification Course.

Ready to grow your business and receive free co-branding, marketing, and pre-qualified leads? Sign up here!

Events for Contractors – Last Thursday of the Month, Lunch on Us!

Join Sonoma Clean Power at the Advanced Energy Center for networking, program support, lunch, and be heard on the last Thursday of the month. Select a Date and RSVP for an accurate food count.

Questions? Contact Angel Garza at (707)324-3223 or email AdvancedEnergyCenter@SonomaCleanPower.org

Free Contractor Trainings October - December 2021

BayREN Live Online Trainings

https://www.bayrencodes.org/

Title 24 Energy Code

HERS Verified Quality Insulation Installation (QII)

Date:  Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Time:  9:00 am – 10:30 am

Description:  This hour-long virtual course focuses on Prescriptive QII requirements in the 2019 Energy Code for new low-rise Residential buildings of any size and Additions greater than 700 ft².

The webinar helps:

  • Designers and architects create projects that meet QII
  • Energy consultants clarify the minimum requirements and schedule of inspections when the Certificate of Compliance form (CF1R) calls for QII
  • Contractors coordinate with HERS Raters and subcontractors on inspection dates and other QII requirements
  • Building departments support QII projects at plan check and inspection to ensure the QII process goes smoothly
  • HERS Raters communicate with the construction team on how to prepare a project to meet QII requirements during HERS inspections

Training developed and offered in partnership with Energy Code Ace.

Target Audience:  Building Department Staff, Contractors, and Building Professionals

CEUs: ICC: 0.1; AIA: 1.0

Webinar Registration Link

Heat Pump Water Heaters for Contractors

Date:  Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Time:  8:00 am – 9:15 am

Description:  Heat pump water heaters (HPWHs) are an increasingly popular technology that are a highly efficient means of providing hot water to houses. This training will be geared toward contractors and will describe HPWHs, when HPWHs are allowed under the 2019 Energy Code, energy code requirements for installation, and how to complete compliance forms.

Target Audience: Contractors

ICC CEUs: 0.1

Webinar Registration Link

PG&E Live Online Trainings

https://pge.docebosaas.com/learn

Heat Pump Retrofit Energy Cost Estimator Overview and Demonstration

Date: Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Time: 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Description: This webinar will provide the user with a review of the methodology and assumptions used in the tool. Users will be given a demonstration showing how they can use the tool to sit down with the homeowner and demonstrate the percent energy cost, energy reduction, and GHG reduction from installation of a HVAC heat pump. There will also be a question and answer section at the end to go over any questions users may have after the demonstration of the tool.

Webinar Registration Link

Heat Pump Water Heater Retrofit Energy Cost Estimator Overview and Demonstration

Date: Thursday, October 7, 2021

Time: 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Description: This webinar will provide the user with a review of the methodology and assumptions used in the energy cost estimator tool. Users will be given a demonstration showing how they can use the tool to sit down with the homeowner and demonstrate the percent energy cost, energy reduction, and GHG reduction from installation of a heat pump water heater. There will also be a question and answer section at the end to go over any questions users may have after the demonstration of the tool.

Webinar Registration Link

Retrofitting Crawlspaces: Air Sealing and Insulating Crawlspace Subfloors

Date: Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Time: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Description: This class assumes that you have made the decision to align your air and thermal boundary at the subfloor of the crawlspace (rather than at the exterior walls and on grade). For most homes that have a raised floor, this is where the air and thermal boundary is typically located. The way that the subfloor is constructed depends on the era that home was built in. Instructor Gavin Healy of Balance Point Home Performance will cover the most appropriate air sealing tactics for common subfloor systems built over the last two centuries. Once we have established an effective air barrier, we will cover how to overcome the tendency for subfloor insulation to fail based on gravity and poor installation techniques.

Webinar Registration Link

PV + Batteries: Integrating Storage with Grid-Tied Photovoltaic Systems (3 Day Class)

Day 1 - Date: - Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Time: 2:00 am – 5:00 pm

Day 2 - Date: - Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Time: 2:00 am – 5:00 pm

Day 3 - Date: - Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

Description: As batteries become safer with standards and follow Code requirements, they are increasingly being paired with grid-tied solar electric systems.  This course covers developing battery technology and how batteries in Energy Storage Systems (ESS) of various sizes are paired with Solar Energy Systems (SES), covering first the basic concepts, design criteria, installation, and financials.  Simply, this class also outlines the various ways batteries can store sunlight with customer sited systems and deliver benefits and ancillary services to the utility grid.  We will discuss both on-grid and off grid systems - mostly focused on residential systems and some commercial. 

The class is both focused at an introductory level with more practical examples for anyone who wants to learn more about solar with batteries in a more advanced class for anyone who wants to learn more in depth about different battery technologies and which storage system to pair with a photovoltaics (PV) system. It will occur over 3 days. NABCEP Continuing Education Credits are available.

Webinar Registration Links

Introduction to Passive House Trades

Date: Wednesday, October 19, 2021

Time: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Description: Presented by the North American Passive House Network, NAPHN's Introduction to Passive House Trades course will broadly cover the following topics: Passive House basics, review typical construction types, windows and installation, air barriers and insulation and new, innovative PH products. It is crucial when working on Passive House buildings to properly install components, understand how to correctly implement design details and assess and plan for the current and future performance of the building. This live online course is accompanied by mini video tutorials for various PH product installations, plus incorporates actual building of Passive House details relevant to the US construction industry. It can also help prepare those interested in the Certified Passive House Tradesperson training.

Webinar Registration Link

Multifamily Electrification: Retrofit Applications and Electrical Assessments

Date: Wednesday, October 21, 2021

Time: 9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Description: As we start turning our attention to the existing building stock, electrification retrofits are becoming increasingly important to achieve our emission goals and have healthier homes. Come explore how to approach an electrification retrofit, what are the constraints and opportunities for multifamily buildings with different configurations. Gain an understanding of what an electrification retrofit looks like by working through example project(s) in class.  

Emerging topics included in this webinar are electrification, heat pump, induction, storage, solar, and PV.

Webinar Registration Link

Balanced Ventilation for Better Health, Comfort and Energy Efficiency: IAQ, OAQ, Ventilation and Filtration

Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Time: 12:30 pm – 4:30 pm

Description: More and more buildings are being constructed with high-performance building envelopes. For these buildings, a well-designed and installed ventilation system is a must. Dan Perunko of Balance Point Home Performance delves into why ventilation and filtration are so important. We will look at indoor and outdoor air quality and discuss the effectiveness of ventilation and filtration at managing various pollutants. In addition to the large body of evidence we already had supporting the need for ventilation and filtration in residential buildings, we will consider the current impacts of building electrification, the pandemic, and wildfires on our systems. This four-hour class is designed to help participants identify and understand critical issues relating to healthy buildings. The class will help participants improve their ability to discuss these issues with customers and will also lay the groundwork for the other course in the Balanced Ventilation series about the design and installation of balanced ventilation and filtration systems.

Webinar Registration Link

Electric Vehicle Chargers: Design and Installation Strategies for New and Existing Homes

Date: Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Time: 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm

Description: With electric vehicle adoption on the rise, California’s clean energy policies and goals will require the necessary infrastructure in our residences to support such ambitious objectives. Michael Hicks of Harmony Building Efficiency Consulting will take you through the basic understanding of Electric Vehicle needs, codes, and opportunities to integrate EV adoption into your new construction project or whole house electrification retrofit.

Webinar Registration Link

Case Studies for Residential Electrification Retrofits

Date: Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Time: 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Description: Sean Armstrong of Redwood Energy will present case studies detailing the design and installation for a range of homes that have electrified their gas loads. In addition to the electrification case studies featured in Redwood Energy’s Pocket Guide to Single Family Home Retrofits, this course will also cover the latest projects with the following all-electric systems: HVAC systems that include both ducted and ductless systems, low-temperature radiant floors, high-temperature radiators, heat pump water heaters, a variety of electric ranges from countertop to retro-antique, laundry dryers, fireplaces, and swimming pools.

Come prepared with questions about your own retrofit projects.

Webinar Registration Link