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Greg labbe home performance verification

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Greg Labbe of BlueGreen Consulting covers performance verfication of low-rise housing for the Toronto Certified Sustainable Building Advisor Program

Greg Labbe of BlueGreen Consulting covers performance verfication of low-rise housing for the Toronto Certified Sustainable Building Advisor Program

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  • 1. 19/10/2012 Putting Performance Into Practice Sustainable Building Advisor CourseEvergreen Brick Works, with Greg Labbé ABOUT Greg Labbé is a partner of BlueGreen Consulting Group Inc., offering consulting and professional services to architects and builders, specialising in building s h e l l o p t i mi s a t i o n , diagnostics and testing. Agenda• Introduction• Quality Management on the job site• Who and what’s involved in: – Design phase – Construction phase• On-site Testing and Inspecting• Construction practices to avoid• Conclusion• Questions 1
  • 2. 19/10/2012 IntroductionB u ild in g a su st a in a ble, h ighp e rf orma n ce h o me st a rt s a t t h ed e sign p h a se a n d e n d s p re d ict a blywith a su cce ssf ul b lo we r d o o r t e st. IntroductionL e t ’s e xp l o r e t h e s t e p s i n b e t we e n , t ol e a r n mo r e a b o u t wh a t ma k e s a h i g hp e r f o r ma n c e , s u s t a i n a b l y d e s i g n e dh o me t h e b e s t p r o d u c t o n t h e ma r k e t . IntroductionA s u s t a i n a b l e h o me me a n s n e wma t e r i a l s , me t h o d s t e c h n i q u e s ; a r e t h et r a d e s yo u h i r e u p t o t h e n e wc h a l l e n g e s ? D o t h e y k n o w wh a t t o d o ? 2
  • 3. 19/10/2012 Introduction A h i g h p e r f o r ma n c e h o me me a n s yo u ’ r e r a i s i n g t h e q u a l i t y b a r a n d a l wa ys i n v o l v es s e t t i n g a s t a n d a r d . G e t t i n g c o n s i s t e n t r e s u l t s wi l l h i n g e o n yo u r g r a s p o f t h e q u a l i t y p r o c e s s . Quality Management• All Quality Management systems; Lean thinking (Toyota), Six Sigma (Motorola) and ISO/QMI have common focus.• Building a super efficient house can have greater cost of production (7-10%*) than “Built to Code”.*Applying Lean Thinking to PH Process, D. Hawkins Quality Management• Being able to identify issues in the planning stage is key.• This starts with making sure you have a shell specialist on your team.• This person is typically the energy modeler and rater for the project. 3
  • 4. 19/10/2012 Quality Management• Learning to build sustainably means growing pains, yet• Contractors in the USA who switched to high performance building found their business grew as their peers businesses continued to slide with the housing market. Quality Management• “Lean thinking” seeks to: – Reduce cost and time of production. – Eliminate bottle necks of information or materials – Reduce idle time and waiting; the two biggest disruptions on construction sites. – Set up regular planning sessions – Allows those that execute activities in the field to define the timeframe Quality Management• Quality is conformance to a written standard• Quality is measured by the cost of non- conformance• It is cheaper to do things right the first time• Most problems start in planning and development• Quality is shared by everyone from architect to builder to site supervisors and the trades. Philip Crosby, The Art of Making Quality Certain 4
  • 5. 19/10/2012What do the following 3 slides have in common? 5
  • 6. 19/10/2012 Any guesses? There’s a shortage of good planning, clear specificationsand an even greater shortage of trades who have time to think things through. Let’s review 6
  • 7. 19/10/2012 How do we get the door open. A window was added after the wall was built. Note the bracing was cut…The tiles were removedbecause someone forgotthe floor heating element. 7
  • 8. 19/10/2012 What’s the Cost?• These costs of repair have to be calculated as a percentage of sale cost & documented.• Calculating the cost of quality is to get management’s attention and to provide a measurement base for seeing how quality improvement is doing. Quality is Free• A quality program can save a company more money than it costs to implement• Profitability is best accomplished by reducing the cost of poor quality and preventing defects• Cost savings include prevention, appraisal, and failure costs.Philip Crosby, The Art of Making Quality Certain Marketing Quality 8
  • 9. 19/10/2012 Quality is a StandardPick a standard or rating system, add aQuality Management program and follow it! A note on Quality Programs Two interesting articles on implementing quality programs on construction sites: 1. Applying Lean Thinking to the Passive House Process, David Hawkins & Russell Richman, Ryerson University. 2. Achieving High Performance Homes Through Quality Management, Duncan Prahl, Home Energy Magazine, 2012 Who and what’s involved in: Design phase• Once you’ve picked your standard, you’ll have to assemble your high-performance team.• Super high efficiency houses: – Don’t have “normal” heating systems – Are quiet, so mechanicals need to be too! – Have very expensive windows 9
  • 10. 19/10/2012 Design Phase: Simulations• Once you’ve picked your standard, you’ll need: – a certified 3rd party energy simulator and rater – a mechanical designer who understands micro loads – a mechanical contractor who’s open to new ideas and smaller systems – a serious window company that values ratings and understands performance – An insulation contractor who understands how critical their job will be Design Phase: SimulationsTo demonstrate by example why it’s necessary todo energy simulations, let’s look at the following,simplified example of a wall section with astandard sized window in it. Scenario 1: Consider a wall and a window… 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R20 10
  • 11. 19/10/2012What’s the R value of the entire wall assembly? 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R20Entire wall assembly only R12*! 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R20 *This calculation IGNORES the thermal bridging at each stud, so it’s even worse!Scenario 2: New wall and same window… 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R40 Let’s spray foam the wall! 11
  • 12. 19/10/2012What’s the R value of the new wall assembly? 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R40Composite R value: 16.5. 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R2 R40 The window is dragging the R value down; energy modeling identifies these issues.Reconsider Scenario 1: with a better window… 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R8 R20 12
  • 13. 19/10/2012 Any guesses on the composite R value? 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R8 R20 New composite R value R18 10’ 2’ 8’ 3’ R8 R20 Design Phase: SimulationsHigh performance doesn’t just happen; it evolvesthrough an iterative process like the IntegratedDesign Process (IDP).This process is usually lead by a professionalintimately familiar with the standard you’ve chosen. 13
  • 14. 19/10/2012Design Phase: IDP+Simulations Design Phase: IDPThe design team, homeowner and builder sitwith the energy simulator professional.Together, they go through an iterativeprocess of optimisation where performanceis optimised and building costs areminimised. Design Phase: IDP Source: CMHC, IDP Guide 14
  • 15. 19/10/2012 Design Phase: IDP Source : Ann Edminster, GBA Advisor Design Phase: Optimised• Out of this IDP process, the final plans are issued and the specifications for the following are set: – The R values and assembly details for the whole building shell including the slab – The air leakage threshold – Exacting window specifications for each façade. – A very short list of mechancials Design Phase: Optimised"We need to use integrated design processthat can create new approaches and tools,and beautiful environments that can restoresocial, economic, and environmental vitalityto our communities."— Bob Berkebile, BNIM, Kansas City, one ofthe world’s most respected green architects 15
  • 16. 19/10/2012 Design Phase: OptimisedFurther reading: – Integrated Design Process Guide, Alex Zimmerman, CMHC Who and what’s involved in: The construction phase• All hands involved in the planning, directing, testing and assembly of the building need to know the standard and have clear written instructions.• They must be able to explain the goals of standard and must know why the standard is important. Who and what’s involved in: The construction phase• Starts in the design phase with the selection of the standard and the detailed specifications for the assembly and materials to be used.• You must impress that quality will be measured both in the ‘cost of quality’, will be visually inspected and air tightness tested. 16
  • 17. 19/10/2012 On-Site Testing and InspectingIdentifying and respecting the air barrier.• Most standards have min. threshold of air leakage in order to be certified.• Everyone on the jobsite must be able to id the air barrier, even at transitions.• All should be able to draw it’s placement on a cross section with a red pen. ID Air Barrier Polyethylene air barrier system (very cold climates only—Zones 6 or higher) Source: www.buildingscience.com ID Air Barrier Housewrap air barrier system Source: www.buildingscience.com 17
  • 18. 19/10/2012 ID Air Barrier Exterior sheathing (insulated or not) air barrier system Source: www.buildingscience.com Air Barrier Testing This is a blower door. Love this guy/gal! S/he can help you find the leaks and be part of your quality management team. They see lots of different things… and can be a source of great information Educate CrewsOften the best way to educate reluctant crews is touse simple diagrams like the following about ultra-efficient houses. 18
  • 19. 19/10/2012 19
  • 20. 19/10/2012 Construction practices to avoid• The following slides are a collection of common issues in contemporary construction.• Most are dry walled over and will haunt the homeowner. Notes on Spray foam 20
  • 21. 19/10/2012 Foam is combustible Check your foam for depth!W H E R E D I D T H E F O A M FA I L ? Many ‘blisters’ (painted orange) were found throughout the ½ pound foam. When presurised t h e y l e a k e d a l o t o f a i r. F o a m w a s unattached or delaminated. 21
  • 22. 19/10/2012 WHE R E D I D THE FOAM FA I L ? The blisters were nearly 1 4 oC h o t t e r than the surrounding foam. Foam to polyBrick ledges & Lintels WRT Sheathing 22
  • 23. 19/10/2012The Pony wall: Diaper vs batt. 23
  • 24. 19/10/2012 Watch Those Transitions Follow the air barrier2LBS Spray foamCellulose InsulationSoffit vent 24
  • 25. 19/10/2012 Notes on Steel• Steel has amazing strength, but not only does it conduct heat amazingly well, it also is really hard to detail insulation and air barriers around it.• It has been known to cause condensation problems and discomfort. Is it really sealed? 25
  • 26. 19/10/2012 26
  • 27. 19/10/2012Beam pocket: How do you seal the air barrier to the beam? Steel every where! 27
  • 28. 19/10/2012 What steel looks like in Infrared.. http://www.rensolutions.co.uk/thermal_bridge.phpDucts in Unconditioned Spaces• Installing ductwork outside the envelope is never a good design; avoid it.• We get called back to “improve” these design flaws. More exposed supply side leakage means hot humid attic, depressed living space, constantly washed with fresh outside dry air. www.buildingscience. com BSD-102: Understanding Attic Ventilation 28
  • 29. 19/10/2012C O N D E N S AT I O N E V E R Y W H E R E ! …forming mini pools of condensation on top of poorly insulated ERV inlet duct, so much so that it’s dripping down...UNDER THE DUCTS TOO! The Bonus Room 29
  • 30. 19/10/2012 Exposed floor DuctsSkylights 30
  • 31. 19/10/2012 This was a 17’ tall triangular shaft, with a 20’x2’ opening in the ceiling for a 2’x4’ skylight. Condensation and uncalculated heatloss.Top plate penetrations: The OK… The bad 31
  • 32. 19/10/2012 The uglyStairs vs Poly: who’s there first? Who’s there first: Electrician or insulator? 32
  • 33. 19/10/2012 Air tightness• Houses don’t need fresh air; occupants do.• Build tight; ventilate right.• Ventilation is not something you let the building shell take care of through ‘leakage’.• Ventilation is something that needs to be controlled precisely and actively. Good ventilation strategy? Heat Recovery Ventilation 33
  • 34. 19/10/2012 Dedicated returns to HRV A 40’ duct run!!That’s better 34
  • 35. 19/10/2012Columns The bump out from outside. 35
  • 36. 19/10/2012The bump out from the basement..The bump out from the main floor..The bump out from the 2nd floor.. 36
  • 37. 19/10/2012AbovegradeBump-out 37
  • 38. 19/10/2012• What it could have looked like.• Source: http://hammerandhand.com/ Side Attics 38
  • 39. 19/10/2012Thedoublewall 39
  • 40. 19/10/2012Clamp thatpoly!(if it’s yourair barrier) Clamp that poly in the drop ceilings. Bad foam/ poly.Getting airbarriersealingaround allpenetrations 40
  • 41. 19/10/2012 Design Flourishes that squanderBan faux chimneys 41
  • 42. 19/10/2012 Extra bedroom: gone!SillyRecom-mendations 42
  • 43. 19/10/2012 Conclusion• Do it once, do it right;• Select your team & standard• Optimise your house by energy simulation• Get everyone on board early• Calculate mistake cost as a % of sales.• Test and inspect. QUESTIONS? Thanks for your time t o d ay. 43
  • 44. 19/10/2012W E TA K E T H E B L U E S O U T O F B E I N G G R E E N ! www.bluegreengroup.ca 44