Apr 1, 2014

The Value of Air Leakage Testing in Large Commercial Buildings – Study Findings

Dave Bohac

The energy required to heat and cool outdoor air and infiltration air is a significant fraction of thermal loads. This project has developed diagnostic procedures to identify air leaks and methods to calculate the savings from air sealing large commercial and institutional buildings. Envelope air sealing could significantly reduce large building energy consumption, but no systematic research has identified the most cost-effective strategies for Minnesota buildings.

In this webinar, Director of Research Dave Bohac presents research findings and the procedures used for conducting air leakage testing. The findings will speak not only to potential cost-effective energy savings, but also to tools and programs that may be developed to help capture these energy savings.

Learn more about this research from the project page

Webinar Summary

Target Audience

  • Utility Program Managers and Auditors
  • Architects and Engineers
  • Commercial Contractors 

Webinar Outline

  • What was the range of envelope leakiness found during testing?
  • What impacts does this have on energy usage and utility costs? 
  • What are the effects of mechanical systems on building pressure and how might it affect design practice?
  • The degree to which air sealing can be a cost effective measure in a cold climate
  • Opportunities to incorporate air leakage testing into current commissioning and retro-commissioning activities
  • What tools might be developed to effectively communicate these findings to building professionals?

* This project was supported in part by a grant from the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources through the Conservation Applied Research and Development (CARD) program.