COMcheck is the U.S. Department of Energy commercial energy compliance software tool that determines whether a new commercial building, high-rise residential building, commercial building addition or alteration meets the requirements of IECC prescriptive based paths or ASHRAE Standard 90.1. Massachusetts requires a COMcheck submittal for new commercial construction which includes the Envelope, Lighting, and Mechanical Compliance Certificates as well as the Plan Review Checklist.
COMcheck allows trade-offs within individual building components or assemblies such as lighting, envelope, and HVAC which facilitates trying different assembly combinations in order to satisfy code requirements. However, trade-offs cannot be made across different assemblies.
If you do need to trade-off across different building components to meet code requirements, 780 CMR Chapter 13 does permit using a HERS® Rating for residential use buildings up to five stories provided all units are separately rated, separately metered, individually heated/cooled and have kitchens. Call us to see this option makes sense for your situation.
Prescriptive energy code compliance allows the use of an energy compliance program called REScheck. REScheck is a U.S. Department of Energy software tool which calculates the energy efficiency of the home by performing a U-factor x Area (UA) calculation for each building assembly to determine the overall heat loss (UA) of a home. If the total heat loss (UA) through the thermal envelope of the home does not exceed the total heat loss (UA) when compared to the “baseline” or reference home which meets minimum code requirements, then your home satisfies the prescriptive energy code requirement for your town.
**REScheck cannot be used in a Stretch Code town.