AIVC - Air Infiltration and Ventilation Centre

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The principles and dilemmas of designing durable house envelopes for the North.

Starting from the premise that condensation in the building envelope is a prime cause of its deterioration, the mechanisms that cause condensation are discussed and control measures explained. The conflicts that arise between some of these measures, the probability of achieving them under realistic construction conditions, and the possible need for fail-safe provisions should complete success not be achieved, are described.

Testing acute condensation and mould growth remedies.

A new Building Research Establishment audio-visual package, 'Remedies for condensation and mould in traditional housing' sets out the findings of field trials of some available remedies for condensation and mould, carried out in England and Scotland on estates which had a history of complaints of dampness. This research has led to a new understanding of the factors involved in the occurence of condensation and the ways in which they interact. Condensation is most likely to be a problem in the homes which use the least heating.

Surface condensation and mould growth in traditionally built dwellings.

Dampness on the inside surfaces of dwellings is a frequent source of complaint. It may be due to rising damp, rain penetration or a plumbing defect; or it may be due to condensation. Condensation and mould growth are widespread problems in all housing sectors but especially so in tenanted accommodation. In many cases it may be difficult to identify the underlying cause; this can often be complicated by social issues. Mild cases will often yield to simple changes in the heating and ventilation regime in the dwelling or to cosmetic treatments of redecoration, perhaps with fungicidal paint.

Residential energy conservation strategy.

Describes an energy conservation strategy for a private home in Columbus Ohio and the benefits that resulted after nine years. The net result of the conservation steps was to reduce the annual house heating energy requirement from approximateley 1060 CCF of natural gas to 410 CCF and annual water heating energy requirement from approximately 400 CCF to 234 CCF. Thecombined savings at the present rate of $65/CCF was $530 per year. Includes a list of conclusions drawn from the experiment.

A prototype ventilation system for superinsulated houses using forced air duct systems.

The Energy Division is working toward development of ventilation systems capable of providing acceptable levels of indoor air quality in superinsulated houses. The research was designed to analyze and improve the indoor air quality of a superinsulated retrofit house located in St. Paul, Minnesota. The occupants had encountered 'stuffy air' problems after their house was superinsulated and weatherized to reduce heat loss, and uncontrolled air infiltration. High levels of CO2 build up were revealed indoors, despite the presence of a continuously operating air-to-air heat exchanger.

Is there a minimum heating requirement for households?

This note arises from work to identify the effectiveness and cost of remedial treatments for condensation and mould problems in housing. Although the four factors - moisture generation, ventilation, insulation and heating - which control the likelihood of mould growths have long been established there hasnot been a straightforward way of showing their interrelationship, particularly where energy costs are important.

Energy efficient doors and windows.

Factsheet includes useful chart on glazing materials. Gives basic advice on limiting heat loss from doors and windows, together with recommendations for materials and installation, Also deals with the new hi tech windows using heat reflective film, and problems of condens- ation.

Home insulation.

Investing in insulation is a good way to reduce energy consumption in the home. The homeowner must determine where adding insulation will be most cost effective. Attics are usually the place to start, followed by floors and walls. Since there is a wide variety of material on the market, thedo-it-yourselfer must choose carefully and install them with proper regard for ventilation and vapour barriers. Even if the work is performed by a contractor, the informed homeowner will benefit by his knowledge of materials and procedures.

Building the superinsulated home.

The superinsulated home will require a slightly higher investment and considerably more care in construction. The benefits seems to outweigh by far the disadvantages, however. The superinsulated home will require a smaller heating system and w

Critical examination of some mathematical models taking account of air renewal. Examen critique des modeles mathematiques de prise en compte des renouvellements d'air.

Experimental methods have been developed to determine rates of air renewal. Based essentially on the use of a tracer gas, these methods permit the determination of real values on the site of the building itself. The pressurisation method which e