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ENERGY SAVINGS in buildings
ACOUSTICAL SEALANT CHOICES
AIR LEAK DETECTION TOOLS
AIR LEAK MINIMIZATION
AIR LEAK SEALING PROCEDURE
AIR SEALING STRATEGIES
ROOF ICE DAM LEAKS
BASEMENT CEILING VAPOR BARRIER
BASEMENT HEAT LOSS
BLOWER DOORS & AIR INFILTRATION
BRICK LINED WALLS
BRICK VENEER WALL AIR LEAKS
BUCKLED FOUNDATIONS due to INSULATION?
CATHEDRAL CEILING INSULATION
CATHEDRAL CEILING VENTILATION
CONDENSATION or SWEATING PIPES, TANKS
COOLING LOAD REDUCTION by ROOF VENTS
DEW POINT CALCULATION for WALLS
FRAMING DETAILS for BETTER INSULATION
FRAMING DETAILS for DOUBLE WALL HOUSES
FRAMING METAL STUD PERFORMANCE
FREEZE-PROOF A BUILDING
FROST HEAVES, FOUNDATION, SLAB
GREENHOUSE DESIGN for SOLAR HEATING
HEAT LOSS in BUILDINGS
HOT ROOF DESIGNS: Un-Vented Roof Solutions
HOUSEWRAP AIR & VAPOR BARRIERS
HUMIDITY LEVEL TARGET
INDOOR AIR QUALITY & HOUSE TIGHTNESS
INSULATION INSPECTION & IMPROVEMENT
INSULATION R-Values & Properties
LEED GREEN BUILDING CERTIFICATION
MOISTURE CONTROL in BUILDINGS
NOISE / SOUND DIAGNOSIS & CURE
ODORS GASES SMELLS, DIAGNOSIS & CURE
SOUND CONTROL in buildings
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING INTERIORS
THERMAL MASS in buildings
THERMAL TRACKING & HEAT LOSS
VAPOR BARRIERS & CONDENSATION in buildings
VENTILATION in BUILDINGS
WALL CONSTRUCTION BARRIER vs CAVITY
WIND WASHING INSULATION At EAVES
WINDOWS & DOORS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
WOOD, COAL STOVES & FIREPLACES
WOOD STOVE SAFETY
ZONE VALVES, HEATING
How to find & fix basement heat loss, duct system air leaks, heat losses from the living area: this article series discusses finding and curing basement heat loss points, a step in how to find points of heat loss and air leaks in buildings using a variety of tools and inspection methods including infra red, smoke tests, visual inspection, and tests. This detailed article accompanies a building weatherization and energy-savings company through a detailed building inspection for heat loss points and air leaks.
The author, Steven Bliss, accompanied Princeton Energy Partners as they used the blower door, thermal imaging, smoke guns, and visual inspection to pinpoint building air leaks, convective loops, heat loss points, air infiltration and air exfiltration on a building. Our page top photo shows the website author (DF) using a smoke tester to view air movement into an un-insulated wall cavity, demonstrating the opening of a convection heat loss loop..
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Basement Heat Loss, Duct System Air Leaks, Living Space Heat Loss, & Special Heat Loss Targets in buildings
As we introduced at AIR LEAK DETECTION TOOLS, in this two-part article the author, Steven Bliss, accompanies a building weatherization and energy-savings company through a detailed building inspection for heat loss points, convective loops, and air leaks. Princeton Energy Partners used thermal imaging, smoke guns, and visual inspection to pinpoint building air leaks, heat loss points, air infiltration and air exfiltration on a building.
The article below is the second part of AIR LEAK DETECTION TOOLS.
The text below is adapted and expanded from "House Doctors with Better Medicine, Princeton Energy Partners use the latest diagnostic tools to comb a house for the major causes of heat loss". Using infra red scans for finding basement heat loss. Building heat loss & energy efficiency tools & procedures. How to find and seal building air leaks, how to find and correct points of un-wanted building heat loss or heat gain. Blower door data for a leaky house compared to a tight house. Using smoke guns or tubes for finding building air leaks. House Doctors with Better Medicine - diagnostic tools comb a house for the major causes of heat loss (part II)
Set Priority for Sealing Air Leaks & Heat Loss Points
The importance of setting priorities for sealing these points of energy wasted is emphasized and discussed, and sketches as well as photographs of common points of building heat loss, or unwanted heat gain, and air leaks are provided.
Air Leaks & Energy Loss Points in the Living Space of a Home: cold corners, closets, kitchen soffits, plumbing chases, windows
Beyond simple caulking and weatherstripping, it is important to look at the whole building - moisture and moisture sources, air quality, heating and ventilation equipment, and HVAC controls - in order to determine what steps will be most cost-effective in saving energy for that particular building.
In older, multi-family buildings with primitive heating controls, shell tightening may fail to lower fuel costs if indoor temperatures are quite uneven between building areas.
If after weathersealing, the tenants on the south side of a building get too warm (during the heating season) and respond by opening their windows, that effect increases the drafts and convection currents in the building, making other areas (and tenants) too cold. The cold tenants turn up their thermostat even higher.
The correct solution may be a more intelligent heating control, and possibly insulation between the tenant areas.
We -DF- see this problem particularly in two-story multi-family homes with an upstairs and downstairs tenant and a single heating system with a single thermostat located on the first floor. The upstairs tenants are too hot and the downstairs tenants are too cold. Slowing warm air movement between floors by insulation and sealing may be helpful, but an optimum solution includes separate heating zones and zone controls, or even separate heating systems entirely, permitting accurate heating cost apportionment among the tenants. In Europe BTU monitoring and accurate heating cost apportionment among tenants is required by law.
Details about BTU usage monitoring are at HEATING COST APPORTIONMENT Issues.
Air leaks at Attic Hatches, Attic Stair Tops, Whole House Fans
Here we include solar energy, solar heating, solar hot water, and related building energy efficiency improvement articles reprinted/adapted/excerpted with permission from Solar Age Magazine - editor Steven Bliss.
We -DF- see the problem of heat loss and uneven heating particularly in two-story multi-family homes with an upstairs and downstairs tenant and a single heating system with a single thermostat located on the first floor.
The upstairs tenants are too hot and the downstairs tenants are too cold.
The illustration (left) shows an Ista BTU monitor, one of several heating cost apportionment devices discussed below.
Slowing warm air movement between floors by insulation and sealing may be helpful, but an optimum solution includes separate heating zones and zone controls, or even separate heating systems entirely, permitting accurate heating cost apportionment among the tenants.
BTU Monitoring Equipment may be required by law for rental units in Europe where a common heating system is used to heat (or A/C to cool) multiple apartments in a single building but those devices are seeing increased interest in the U.S. as well.
For details on solving these problems see BTU Monitoring & HEATING COST APPORTIONMENT Issues where we discuss BTU usage monitoring & heating cost apportionment methods used in buildings housing multiple rental apartments or other tenants served by a single heating system..
Also see ENERGY USE MONITORING
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about heat loss detection & measurement in buildings
Questions & answers or comments about how to find and fix heat loss points in building basements, HVAC ducts, and in the living area.
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Technical Reviewers & References
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