We at Max Energy Solutions carry out Airtightness Testing on both residential and commercial properties.

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Air Pressure Testing (also knows as Air Permeability Testing or Airtightness Testing) has proven itself as being a very effective way of increasing a buildings energy rating, reducing heat loss and overall running costs of existing buildings and new buildings prior to completion. With the legislation backing the use of the new technologies to ensure that houses are built to a high standard Air Pressure testing is now a common procedure of ensuring the quality of craftsmanship and materials used. In commercial buildings, especially when the premises are used for storage or production of medicines, food or computer equipment an Air Permeability test can be required to ensure fire safety.

You should conduct an AIR LEAK TEST when:

  1. Building a new house.
  2. Building an extension.
  3. Retrofitting existing building.
  4. Changing windows.
  5. You feel the house is draughty/cold.

We test the building at a stage when remedial work can be done as the Air Pressure Test exposes infiltration in the walls, roof and floor. Rather than been considered another burden from the Building Regulations, it is in fact a very important tool for snagging and improving the quality of the building. An Air Pressure Test involves pressurizing the building using fans installed into doorways. The test measures the volume of ‘conditioned’ air leaking through ‘unplanned’ ventilation across every m2 of the ‘envelope’ area in an hour (at an internal to external pressure difference of 50Pa). We can effectively pinpoint the leakage areas with the use of smoke pencils, which make the Air Pressure test more illustrative for the developers enabling them to rectify any problems there and then.

According to the latest revised Part L Building regulations new homes must consume 40 per cent less energy than a reference house, though builders have the discretion as to how exactly this target is met – and can choose how to claw back the necessary reductions by going beyond the minimum requirements in everything from added insulation, to renewable energy or high efficiency boilers, to improved air-tightness. Because sealing a building during construction involves relatively little or no cost – at least down to an air permeability of about six or seven m3/hr/m2 at 50 Pa – it is one of the most cost effective ways of making large strides towards compliance.

After the survey has been carried out a report is then compiled which will illustrate exactly where the air leakage is taking place. In addition the report will contain advice on how to best reduce this air loss.

Air Pressure Testing is a non-destructive method of determining the patterns of heat loss and air leakage from a building’s structure. In other words it will not cause any damage to the building.

An additional benefit of carrying out an Air Pressure Test is that Air leaks allow direct flow of pollutants and irritants into a dwelling. These pollutants may be drawn from the attic, crawlspace, basement, garage or directly from outside. Air pressure testing can assist in reducing the volume of harmful particles such as:
• Pollen and Dust
• Insulation Fibers
• Exhaust Fumes from Cars
• Mildew and Mould
• Insecticide Vapours

By reducing content of these harmful substances in a dwelling, you can safeguard the health and well being of the occupants, particularly where inhabitants suffer from asthma or other respiratory related problems. For a competitive quote contact us now. We carry Air Pressure Tests in Dublin City, Dublin County and cover all of Leinster area.

Facts about Air Pressure Testing

• The revised building regulations of 24th of January 2008 introduced mandatory Air Pressure testing for new dwellings. All new single dwellings require an Air Pressure test from the 1st of July 2008.

• To comply with building regulations the achieved Air Permeability rate should be less then 10m3/hr/m2 @50Pa.

• For passive house certification Airtightness of 0.6 air changes per hour (ACH) at 50 Pascals (Pa) pressure is required.

• Uncontrolled air infiltration represents a sizeable portion of the energy losses in a building, estimates range from between 20 and 30%.

• From an Artightness perspective, the shape of a building is arguably as important as the materials from which it is constructed. The simpler the shape of the building, and the simpler the geometry and the less junctions, the better it will be in terms of Airtightness.

• The requirements of ATTMA for the measurement of the Air Permeability of buildings are based primarily around the BS EN Standard 13829:2001

• In calculating Air Permeability, corrections are made for temperature and barometric pressure. Local wind speed should preferably be below 3m/s.


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