SPRAYFOAM Professional - Summer 2015 - (Page 34)

sPEaKinG sEnsibLY what You nEED to Know about thE nEw buiLDinG coDEs Air tightness, VentilAtion And Moisture Control BY NIKKI KrUEGEr, marKETING maNaGEr, THErma-sTor Speakers from the highest-attended seminars at Sprayfoam 2015 Convention and Expo share more insight related to the sprayfoam industry in this series, Speaking Sensibly. This article is based on a portion of Nikki Krueger's breakout session at Sprayfoam 2015. L ooking at a home from a wholehouse perspective when improving the energy performance is not only impetrative to protecting the comfort and health of your homeowners but now is becoming mandatory through building codes in several states. The SPFA certification program discusses this topic in length and highly recommends you to work with a licensed HVAC contractor when applying foam in a new or existing home. This means understanding how the home's flow of energy, heat, air and moisture will affect the indoor environment - including attics and crawlspaces. New residential energy efficiency building codes are trying to tackle this challenge. These codes are requiring homes to meet specific air tightness and indoor air quality standards - both are driving the need for dedicated dehumidification and mechanical ventilation. The 2012 International Energy Conservation Code includes provisions to improve a home's airtightness with mandated blower door testing. A visual air sealing inspection will no longer be allowed. Climate Zones 1 and 2 must achieve ≤5 ach50 and in Zones 3 - 8 ≤3 ach50. What does this mean? According to Allison Bailes, Ph.D., founder of Energy 34 sprayfoam Professional | Summer 2015 Vanguard, a company that provides training, consulting, design (HVAC), and HERS provider services, "An air change is when a volume of air equal to the volume of the house exchanges with outside air. One ACH, then, means all the air in the house exchanges once per hour. With the Blower Door running and the house pressure at negative 50 Pascals, a typical existing home might leak at the rate of 15 air changes per hour, which is written 15 ACH50. Really tight houses can get down to 1 ACH50 or even less. In fact, the Passive House program requires a maximum infiltration rate of 0.06 ACH50." CLIMATE ZoNE MAP Credit: energy.gov Build it Tight. ventilate Right. Reducing the amount of air that leaks in and out of the home through insulation, air sealing and new windows and doors are some of the first steps when it comes to cutting heating and cooling costs - the whole goal for using spray foam insulation in the first place. But such energy saving strategies can result in unintended consequences. If effective mechanical ventilation and moisture control methods are not implemented the result could lead to uncomfortable living conditions, homeowner health issues and in extreme cases - significant structural damage. This is why if you live in an area that has adopted the 2012 IECC code, and there will be 20 states that have by the end of 2015, you must now also make sure the home has a whole-house mechanical ventilation system. Contrary to what some people say - you cannot make a home too tight. You just need to make sure you are bringing in the right amount of fresh filtered air to dilute indoor pollutants and replenish oxygen. R403.5 Mechanical ventilation (Mandatory). The building shall be provided with ventilation that meets the requirements of the International Residential Code or International Mechanical Code, as applicable, or with other approved means of ventilation. Air intakes and exhausts shall have automatic or gravity dampers that close when the ventilation system is not operating. It is also important to know that even if your residential building code currently does not mandate a required amount of mechanical fresh air, there are recommended standards that help http://www.energy.gov

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of SPRAYFOAM Professional - Summer 2015

Executive Director’s Corner
President’s Post
Foam Business News
SPFA Today
Sprayfoam 2015 Convention and Expo Coverage
The Impact of Negative Media
Legislative Update
Behind the Foam
Speaking Sensibly New Building Codes – Air Tightness, Ventilation and Moisture Control
Communication and Commercial Sprayfoam Projects
ABAA News
2015 SPFA Contractor Awards
Safety First
Ask the Expert
Index of Advertisers | Advertisers.com

SPRAYFOAM Professional - Summer 2015

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