Builders need to be aware of the potential headaches involved with FAILING the air leakage test. The 2015 Energy Code mandates that all residential homes and units pass an air leakage test. If you have not seen a blower door test before, you are about to become much more familiar!
In Climate Zones 3 through 8, the standard is 3 ACH50 or less to pass. The yellow and green areas of Texas must meet this requirement.
These standards are not easy to attain, particularly the 3 ACH50!
And if you believe that spray foam insulation will pass with flying colors...think again! Of the spray-foam houses we have tested, over 75% do not meet the 3 ACH50 standard! Builders in North Texas MUST develop strategies to properly seal their homes to pass this test! If a house does not pass on the first try, the leaks will need to be sealed, and the house retested, until it passes.
The biggest question builders will ask at this point will be: "Where are the leaks?"
The answer will not always be obvious. It could be lots of little seams and cracks, or it could be one big hole that was missed before drywall, or cut by a naive subcontractor. They could be anywhere, even behind the finish walls! Your client's moving van may be en route, or even idling outside...can you afford the time and expense of tracking them down?
Fortunately, Energy IQ offers Infrared Thermal Inspections to efficiently locate building envelope air leaks. Our specialized IR camera "sees" even small temperature differences that indicate air leakage from outdoors to indoors. Using a blower door to enhance the leaks, we can help you find the sources so you can quickly perform proper seal-up or make needed repairs to pass the blower door test required by code.
To find out more, contact us today.