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Title: Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings

Abstract

The most common method for measuring air leakage is to use a single blower door to pressurize and/or depressurize the test unit. In detached housing, the test unit is the entire home and the single blower door measures air leakage to the outside. In attached housing, this 'single unit', 'total', or 'solo' test method measures both the air leakage between adjacent units through common surfaces as well air leakage to the outside. Measuring and minimizing this total leakage is recommended to avoid indoor air quality issues between units, reduce energy losses to the outside, reduce pressure differentials between units, and control stack effect. However, two significant limitations of the total leakage measurement in attached housing are: for retrofit work, if total leakage is assumed to be all to the outside, the energy benefits of air sealing can be significantly over predicted; for new construction, the total leakage values may result in failing to meet an energy-based house tightness program criterion. The scope of this research is to investigate an approach for developing a viable simplified algorithm that can be used by contractors to assess energy efficiency program qualification and/or compliance based upon solo test results.

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Building Technologies Program
OSTI Identifier:
1089601
Report Number(s):
DOE/GO-102013-3939
KNDJ-0-40342-00
DOE Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Related Information: Work performed by Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), Norwalk, Connecticut
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; RESIDENTIAL; RESIDENTIAL BUILDING; CARB; BUILDING AMERICA; CFM50; GUARDED BLOWER DOOR; UNGUARDED; COMMON WALL; MULTI-FAMILY; ATTACHED DWELLING; BUILDING TIGHTNESS; INFILTRATION RATES; SIMPLIFIED TEST METHOD; ALGORITHM; Buildings

Citation Formats

Faakye, O., Arena, L., and Griffiths, D. Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings. United States: N. p., 2013. Web. doi:10.2172/1089601.
Faakye, O., Arena, L., & Griffiths, D. Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings. United States. doi:10.2172/1089601.
Faakye, O., Arena, L., and Griffiths, D. Mon . "Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings". United States. doi:10.2172/1089601. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1089601.
@article{osti_1089601,
title = {Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings},
author = {Faakye, O. and Arena, L. and Griffiths, D.},
abstractNote = {The most common method for measuring air leakage is to use a single blower door to pressurize and/or depressurize the test unit. In detached housing, the test unit is the entire home and the single blower door measures air leakage to the outside. In attached housing, this 'single unit', 'total', or 'solo' test method measures both the air leakage between adjacent units through common surfaces as well air leakage to the outside. Measuring and minimizing this total leakage is recommended to avoid indoor air quality issues between units, reduce energy losses to the outside, reduce pressure differentials between units, and control stack effect. However, two significant limitations of the total leakage measurement in attached housing are: for retrofit work, if total leakage is assumed to be all to the outside, the energy benefits of air sealing can be significantly over predicted; for new construction, the total leakage values may result in failing to meet an energy-based house tightness program criterion. The scope of this research is to investigate an approach for developing a viable simplified algorithm that can be used by contractors to assess energy efficiency program qualification and/or compliance based upon solo test results.},
doi = {10.2172/1089601},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2013},
month = {7}
}

Technical Report:

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