About this course

This is a comprehensive commercial energy modeling course for you to master eQUEST, the "Quick Energy Simulation Tool" developed by the U.S. Department of Energy and other industry leaders for energy modeling.

eQuest is available at no charge at https://www.doe2.com/equest/. However eQUEST only runs natively on PCs. In order to run the software on a Mac, you'll need to use a virtualization program like Mac parallels.

This course is hands-on. You will learn how to build and run energy models. By the end of the course, you should be able to function as the go-to energy modeler on an integrated design team.

What is eQUEST energy modeling Software?

Imagine a building energy simulation tool comprehensive enough to be useful to ALL design team members, yet so intuitive ANY design team member could use it, in ANY or ALL design phases, including schematic design. eQUEST is well named because it provides something the you’ve been looking for, but have been unable to find … a sophisticated, yet easy-to-use building energy analysis tool. With eQUEST, you’ll be able to provide professional-level results in an affordable level of effort.

eQUEST was designed to allow you to perform detailed analysis of today’s state-of-the-art building design technologies using today’s most sophisticated building energy use simulation techniques but without requiring extensive experience in the "art" of building performance modeling.

eQUEST now has enhanced DOE-2 + Wizards + Graphics. This is accomplished by combining a building creation wizard, an energy efficiency measure (EEM) wizard, and graphical reporting with a simulation "engine" derived from the latest version of DOE-2. Reliable detailed simulation has never been easier!

eQUEST was initially supported as a part of the Energy Design Resources program which was funded by California utility customers and administered by Pacific Gas and Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Southern California Edison, under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission.

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Course outline

5 modules • 23 assignments • 3:14 hours of video lectures

Welcome • 3 assignments
Orientation Materials

This course is self-paced, so you don’t need to be logged in at any specific time. You can get started immediately after you enroll and the course materials will remain in your account with minimum guaranteed access for 12 months (1 year) after enrollment.

  • Overview of course (01:18 minutes) Preview
  • Set up email notifications and your student profile
  • Introduce yourself on the discussion board
Module 1 • 2 assignments
Basics of Building Systems

Module 1 covers essential aspects of lighting, building envelope, and HVAC systems. It discusses various light bulbs, fixtures, and sensors for efficient lighting, and examines insulation and window standards for optimal building envelopes. Additionally, it provides an overview of common HVAC systems, strategies for improving their efficiency, and analyzes energy use breakdowns.

  • Lighting and Building Envelope (10:08 minutes)
  • HVAC Systems and End Use Breakdown (09:48 minutes)
Module 2 • 3 assignments
Setting up eQuest and Schematic Wizard

Module 2 provides comprehensive guidance on using the eQuest software for simple building energy modeling in the Schematic Wizard Mode. It includes instructions for downloading, installing, and setting up the software, as well as detailed steps for filling out wizard screens related to building footprint, envelope, interior construction, and exterior features. Additionally, it covers building scheduling, HVAC systems selection, and domestic hot water heating, culminating in running the energy model based on the gathered inputs.

  • Setting up eQuest and Schematic Wizard (07:16 minutes)
  • Schematic Wizard Pt. 2 (13:12 minutes)
  • Schematic Wizard Pt. 3 (11:46 minutes)
Module 3 • 4 assignments
Design Development Wizard

Module 3 provides detailed instructions for using the Design Development wizard in eQuest. It starts with an introduction to the wizard and guidance on entering general building information, followed by steps for editing shell screens 1-5, which include inputting shell information, building footprint, envelope, interior construction, and exterior doors. The lesson continues with completing shell screens 6-26, covering exterior windows, building zoning, schedules, lighting, equipment loads, and the domestic hot water system, and concludes with setting up HVAC system parameters and finalizing the building model.

  • General Information (06:57 minutes)
  • Building the Shell Pt. 1 (13:46 minutes)
  • Building the Shell Pt. 2 (18:38 minutes)
  • HVAC System and Building Model (11:30 minutes)
Module 4 • 5 assignments
Detailed Edit Mode

Module 4 provides an in-depth look at the Detailed Edit Mode capabilities in eQuest. It starts with an overview of the spreadsheet feature, scheduling options, and inputting utility data for electricity, natural gas, and fuel usage. The lesson then explains how to view and edit building shell properties and internal loads, configure water-side HVAC loops and equipment, and set up meter data for imported water. It also covers air-side HVAC parameter settings, including zone-level and VAV system-level adjustments, and concludes with troubleshooting tips and miscellaneous specifications for refining the model.

  • General Project Information (16:20 minutes)
  • Building Shell and Internal Loads (13:43 minutes)
  • Water-Side HVAC Systems (13:51 minutes)
  • Air-Side HVAC Systems (16:13 minutes)
  • Difficulties of eQuest Modeling (15:28 minutes)
Module 5 • 2 assignments
Creating a Baseline Model using Code

Module 5 introduces ASHRAE Appendix G, explaining how to use ASHRAE values for developing baseline models. Additionally, it outlines key information about IECC's focus on building envelope, HVAC, water service systems, and lighting, and Energy Star's emphasis on square footage and energy efficiency through EUI values.

  • Intro to Energy Codes and ASHRAE Appendix G (07:52 minutes)
  • IECC and Energy Star (06:22 minutes)
Conclusion • 4 assignments
Feedback and Additional Resources

This is our last module but you still have access to the all of course materials for 12 months (1 year), so keep working and you'll be able to complete the course at your own pace. After your year of access expires you can optionally extend access with a HeatSpring Membership. Enjoy the course and keep in touch!

  • 1 Year of Access to Course Materials
  • Feedback: 2-minute Exit Survey
  • Consider Joining as a HeatSpring Member
  • Certificate of Completion: Request a Certificate


  • Jessica Harris

    President, Harris Energy Solutions LLC
    View profile

    Jessica is a Certified Energy Manager with a mechanical engineering degree from New Jersey Institute of Technology. Jessica began her career in mechanical design and quickly got involved in various types of energy engineering, such as energy procurement, energy audits, renewable conceptual layouts, and sustainability benchmarking. This experience diversified into... Learn more

  • Deng Lin

    Harris Energy Solutions
    View profile

    Deng is a professional engineer with expertise in all aspects of Energy Engineering.mHe graduated from SUNY Maritime College in 2009 and immediately started work in the energy consulting field. With extensive hands-on knowledge in Energy Auditing, Commissioning, and Retro-commissioning, he took a strategic career path change from consulting to being an owner’s... Learn more

  • Patrick Osborne

    View profile

    Patrick is a Senior Energy Engineer at Harris Energy Solutions with 15 years of experience in mechanical engineering, energy efficiency, building energy modeling, energy auditing, HVAC, and solar design. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering from West Virginia University and multi-state licensure as a Professional Engineer. Patrick has extensive... Learn more

Frequently asked questions

How does this course work?
You can begin this online course instantly upon enrollment. This 13 module course is delivered entirely online. This course is self-paced and you can set your own schedule to complete the materials. You can begin the lecture videos and other course materials as soon as you enroll. During your year of access the instructor will be in the course answering questions on the discussion board every Monday. After successfully completing the course, you will be able to generate a certificate of completion.
How long do I have access to the materials?
Students get unlimited access to the course materials as soon as they enroll and for one year (365 days) after enrollment. Rewatch videos and review assignments as many times as you want. View updates the instructor makes to the course as the industry advances. Return to your course anytime with online access from anywhere in the world. After the one year of access expires, access can be extended by joining as a HeatSpring member. A single membership extends access to course materials for all past enrollments.
Is there a certificate of completion?
Yes, when you complete this course you are eligible for a certificate of completion from HeatSpring. You can download your certificate as soon as you have completed all of the course requirements. Students can easily share their verified certificates on their LinkedIn profiles using our LinkedIn integration.
Can I register multiple people?
Yes please visit our [HeatSpring for Teams](/for_teams) page to get a group discount.


Based on 25 reviews
students have taken this course

Chris was extremely effective instructor both in terms of the presentation of the material as well as his responsiveness to inquiries.

Kathleen Pedersen
Senior Planner/Environmental Reviewer/Sustainability, Boston Planning and Development Agency
Brijesh V

Great course to get your first lesson on Equest and great overview on heat mechanics and HVAC systems.

dan bytner
Cad Designer, Thermolite Inc.

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