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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Building Envelope

    So in upgrading the heat/cooling system of a 50 year old schools building I found out it would be wise to examine the envelope before we go any further. So with a thermal imaging camera I will be examining the building next week sometime providing the weather is nice. I was curious as to what areas of the school building I should concentrate on when I am auditing the envelope? (ie corners, joints between additions and older structure, etc..) Thanks all.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    wash dc
    If you are doing a load calc, then you typically look at wall construction, roof, windows, etc. and input them into a load calculation program (doe, trane, carrier, etc).

    look at the inputs required for any one of these programs to give you some ideas where to concentrate.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    This is a poor time of year to do an IR scan on building envelopes. You should have at least 20 degrees difference between inside and outside temps. Doing it during the day will have to much solar loading and give you no useful information. The building envelope is very important and is usually overlooked so you are wise to be considering improving it. Is your goal to reduce infiltration? Look at penetrations like doors and windows, roof truss space is usually leaky at wall intersection. You will have better luck viewing from the interior to look for insulation problems as the brick exteriors hold their heat energy for along time. You may want to see if you can pressurize the building to increase the air loss to help identify areas of concern. Look at the entire building, first from a distance to get a large viewing area and focus on smaller thermal anomalies closer up. That's the best part of IR is that you can scan large ares quickly.
    Good luck and let us know what you find.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    mbarsen- i understand its a bad time but my internship is only over the summer so i have no choice. i was going to start with the inside out approach being that ill be able to capture heat infiltration in a colder space than i will on the exterior. I think next week well have some 80 degree days which will work fine for my application. In a school is there any other spots that might be overlooked that i should look at?


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Austin, Texas
    Typically the roof / wall joint is not sealed at all. Then "complex joints" (multiple surfaces coming together) leak because nobody considered how they should be sealed. Anyplace there is and overhang or canopy attached to the building rarely get sealed. New to old joints are also problems. Other than those, you are looking for leaks of heat or air. You just have to look at you building to see where they are.
    If "I have always done it this way" is a good reason to do it again, how many times do I have to do something wrong - before it becomes right?

  6. #6
    Thank you! I am very much interested with this topic. I want to know how important building envelope is.

    hershfieldtwo building envelope

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    ir can confirm suspicions about thermal leaks, but in any case that cannot be replacement for thermal load calculations.

    you can burn lot of money by deciding on equipment without thermal load calcs.

  8. #8
    No I understand how essential it is to have a building envelope consultant. I would like to hire one in order for me to be knowledgeable about this idea.

    Morrison building envelope consultant

  9. #9
    constructing a Data Center takes a lots of research and resources. There are many points to be cared of and instead simply planning some rough design, you need experts for the job to be done. Planning a Data Center is not just placing some servers and racks.

    Building Envelope Consultant

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