Reducing Uncertainty in Air Tightness Measurements

There are several methods for measuring air tightness that may result in different values and sometimes quite different uncertainties. The two main approaches trade off bias and precision errors and thus result indifferent outcomes for accuracy and repeatability.  To interpret results from the two approaches, various questions need to be addressed, such as the need to measure the flow exponent, the need to make both pressurization and depressurization measurements and the role of wind in determining the accuracy and precision of the results.

Applying Large Datasets to Developing a Better Understanding of Air Leakage Measurement in Homes

Air tightness is an important property of building envelopes.  It is a key factor in determining infiltration and related wall-performance properties such as indoor air quality, maintainability and moisture balance.  Air leakage in U.S. houses consumes roughly 1/3 of the HVAC energy but provides most of the ventilation used to control IAQ.  There are several methods for measuring air tightness that may result in different values and sometimes quite different uncertainties.

Pressure testing a very large building : theory and practice

The airtightness of a building envelope impacts upon the magnitude of uncontrolled air leakage and associated ventilation energy losses. A building's airtightness can be assessed using a steady state fan pressurisation technique. This paper describes a study on the largest building in the UK ever to have had its airtightness tested. Power law regression analysis revealed a good correlation between flow rate into the building and observed pressure differentials.

Predicting performance of reinforced circular spiral lockseam ducts under negative pressure

This paper presents the results of 23 experiments during which reinforced spiral ducts were submitted to underpressure until they collapse. Experiments were operated with different duct diameters, reinforcement spacing, material and duct thickness. Results were analyzed and led to an equation for estimating the collapse pressure of such ducts.

Estimation of air infiltration in multi storey buildings using wind tunnel tests.

When carrying out pressure tests of models of multi-story buildings in The Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel, the external mean and RMS pressures are measured at 400 to 800 different locations over the building surface. The tests are originally carried out in order to determine the net wind loads for the design of cladding and glazing, but the results can also be used to estimate the internal pressures, and then calculate the air infiltration. Two mathematical models are used to estimate the wind-induced air infiltration in three multi-story buildings.

Methods for measuring the airtightness and air change rates in buildings. Rakennusten ilmanpitavyyden ja ilmanvaihtuvuuden mittausmenetelmat.

In these instructions for measuring the airtightness and air change rates in buildings, the principles of measurement methodics, the need for measurements and choosing the correct method for different purposes, are presented. Details of measuring are described for the most common methods: the pressure test, the collector chamber method for measuring local leakages, and the tracer gas methods. In addition, other methods and auxiliary measurements are presented.