Home Energy Professional
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) collaborated with technicians and trainers from across the home performance industry to develop high-quality, nationally-recognized professional certifications. These new certifications focus on the most important jobs in the home energy upgrade industry: energy auditor, retrofit installer technician, crew leader, and quality control inspector.
The Home Energy Professional (HEP) certifications are supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and administered by the Building Performance Institute, Inc. (BPI).
The National Sustainable Structures Center (NSSC), formerly the Weatherization Training Center (WTC), at Pennsylvania College of Technology is a participating BPI Test Center that offers the written and field practical exams for all of the new Home Energy Professional certifications. In addition, we offer training and curricula that align with the industry-accepted HEP Job Task Analysis (JTA) for the Retrofit Installer Technician, Crew Leader, and Energy Auditor job classifications.
Home Energy Professional Certification Pilot Exams
BPI is now piloting written and field practical exams for four new certifications. The results of this pilot test cycle will be used to set passing scores for the national exams. A written exam and a field exam are required for certification.
Learn how to apply for the Pilot certification exams.
Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) Personnel
NSSC is approved to offer FREE Home Energy Professional Certification pilot exams for eligible WAP personnel, including current and former WAP personnel and contractors, current WAP state and local staff, and trainers working with the WAP.
Download the HEP WAP Workers Fact Sheet
Industry Personnel (Non-WAP)
For individuals in private industry, the standard price for the pilot exams is $250 for the written exam and $500 for the field exam, for a total of $750 (both exams are required for certification).
Home Energy Professional Certification Training & Testing
View the list of courses, workshops, and certification exams associated with the Home Energy Professional certifications below, as well as course descriptions and upcoming course dates.
The following table summarizes the training associated with each Home Energy Professional certification.
Individuals that wish to take coursework in this training program must complete a Home Energy Professional Training Program Application and submit to NSSC along with proof of completion for the prerequisite coursework (OSHA 10 Construction Industry and DOE Lead-Safe Weatherization). After your application has been approved by NSSC, you may enroll in training program courses.
Home Energy Professional Questions & Answers
Where can I find more information on the new Home Energy Professional certifications?
Please visit the U.S. Department of Energy’s “About Home Energy Professional Certifications” website or the Building Performance Institute’s HEP Certification Pilot website for the most up-to-date information on the HEP certifications and examinations.
Are the new certifications replacing any of BPI’s existing certifications?
The new certifications are not replacing BPI’s existing certifications. The new certifications are for experienced industry professionals. They are tailored to the specific job tasks of each role: energy auditor, retrofit installer, crew chief, and quality control inspector, and have significant work experience prerequisites attached to them. As experienced BPI certified professionals’ certifications come up for renewal (every three years), individuals may want to consider one of the new certifications. BPI’s existing certifications will remain important building blocks for gaining experience and ensuring technicians have the broad building science knowledge they need to build their careers.
Are these certifications available to workers and employers outside of the WAP?
The certifications are available to workers and employers outside of the WAP, but the free exams during the pilot period are available only to WAP personnel. DOE, NREL, and BPI have all seen significant interest from the private sector regarding these certifications. Many of the candidates applying to take the exams (although they don’t qualify for the free exams) are technicians in the field from the private sector. There has also been outreach to and great interest in the certifications from the wider home performance industry, utilities, and companies that provide energy efficiency services to utilities.
How long will the pilot testing last?
The HEP pilot test period will run until a sufficient number of exams have been taken to establish a credible pass-fail score (800 written and 800 practical exams). The pilot test period also allows the proposed exam questions, practical/field exams, and processes to be vetted and evaluated prior to receiving accreditation from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). ANSI accreditation indicates high quality and diligence.
Do I have to take coursework in order to sit for an HEP exam?
No, but it is highly recommended that you review the Certification Handbooks and Exam Prerequisites to make sure you have the necessary knowledge, skills, experience, and/or coursework that are required to sit for the exams.
How do I get a course certificate?
Most home energy professional courses have a written exam and field (hands-on) exam at the end of the course. All courses with tests require a passing grade (70% or above) in both the written and lab examinations in order to receive a course certificate. If a participant does not pass both examinations, he/she is encouraged to receive one-on-one mentoring from an instructor to determine whether to take the exam(s) or the whole course again.
Some workshops do not have an end-of-course exam, but are awarded a course certificate based on participation in discussions and course exercises. At the beginning of class, the instructor will review if there are any required exams and what is needed in order to receive a course certificate.