Air Tightness Testing for Existing Buildings
We provide air tightness testing and consultancy services for all types of existing buildings.
From draughty houses to large commercial buildings, our highly experienced team of Air Tightness Technicians are able to diagnose air leakage paths to help improve a buildings energy efficiency.
If you need consultancy for MEES, EPC rating improvements or simply want to improve a buildings energy efficiency, EPS Group are here to help.
EPS Group: Air Tightness Testing & Consultancy for Existing Buildings
Buildings are estimated to contribute around 23% of the UK’s carbon emissions. Around 77% of this figure is from dwellings and 23% from commercial and public sector buildings. The UK Government is targeting net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and improved EPC ratings are seen as one way of achieving this. Air tightness testing is becoming an increasingly popular way of improving a buildings EPC rating in a cost effective manner.
In addition to the 2050 target, the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards for buildings or ‘MEES’ mean that buildings with an EPC rating of ‘F’ or below can no longer be let. An air tightness test is sometimes a quick fix for landlords or building owners to achieve compliance.
EPS Group are able to offer consultancy services or ‘pre-test’ inspections to advise where air leakage paths are likely to occur within the building. We provide a site visit followed by a report with photographs to allow you to resolve as many air leakage points as feasible prior to a formal air tightness test.
Why is Air Tightness Testing Existing Buildings important?
It is estimated that around 75% of the housing stock that exists today will still exist in 2050. With the government target set to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050, action needs to be taken to improve the energy efficiency of the existing building stock.
This will most likely require improvements to insulation levels, heating systems, ventilation and also air tightness.
Poor air tightness in buildings can cause discomfort to occupants, increase the energy demand and also mean HVAC systems do not run as efficiently as they were intended. This in turn can increase the running cost of the building.
Air Tightness Testing can be used to improve a buildings air permeability rate or air leakage rate by sealing up gaps and cracks in the building fabric. This can help to reduce uncontrolled air infiltration, improve occupant comfort and decrease running costs.
Common Sources of Air Infiltration in Dwellings
Common Sources of Air Infiltration in Commercial Buildings
How do you locate air leakage areas during a test?
EPS Group have been air testing buildings since 2007. Our Technicians are very experienced in testing all types of building and as a result know the common areas where air leakage can occur within a building.
As well as a wealth of experience we are able to rely on our vast array of equipment for leak detection including:
- Thermal Image Cameras – Useful when there is a an adequate temperature differential between the external and internal environment.
- Smoke pens/machines – Smoke pens or puffers are a simple yet effective tool in air leakage detection. Small leaks can be found with the building under pressurisation or depressurisation. Full building smoke tests can be completed with smoke machines.
- Anemometers – A non intrusive tool used to detect air movement and is highly accurate.
Existing Building Air Tightness Testing FAQs
How is an Air Tightness Test Completed?
- Prior to running the Air Tightness Test, the building will need to be prepared by sealing off (masking) any intentional (controlled) sources of ventilation such as extract fans, cooker hoods, trickle vents and log burners and by ensuring that all drainage waste traps contain water.
- A UKAS calibrated fan (or fans) is temporarily placed within an external door to the building before a number of measurements, and environmental readings are then taken. The property is then pressurised, or depressurised and a range of readings are recorded at various pressure differentials.
- Once the fan is running, the actual pressure test generally takes around 20 minutes, and results are available instantly. However, at EPS Group, we allow up to 2 hours to complete a test in order to ensure that there is an opportunity to address any unexpected problems that may arise.
- During the course of the test, site workers or occupants can remain within the building without any health risks; however, it is important to note that individuals are unable to enter or exit the building whilst the test fans are running, and the unit is pressurised.
What Air Permeability Rate is required for Existing Buildings?
A buildings assumed air permeability rate for EPC purposes will depend on the age of construction.
Generally, we find a lot of clients that we work for are attempting to achieve a figure of 15.00 m3.h/m2 or below. It’s worth speaking to your EPC provider or retrofit consultant to determine the required rate.
You should also consider the consequences of making a building too airtight, so we always recommend that you also speak with ventilation provider to ensure the systems in place are adequate.
How can EPS Group help with Domestic Air Tightness Testing?
How can EPS Group help with Existing Air Tightness Testing for Existing Buildings?
We pride ourselves on providing a client-focused Air Tightness Testing service. We allocate time generous appointment slots to allow for unforeseen problems to be resolved during the test.
We have been providing Air Tightness Tests since 2007, and all of our Technicians are vastly experienced with pressure testing all types of buildings ranging from small flats to large supermarkets.
There are many other reasons to appoint EPS Group to complete your Air Tightness Test including:
Highly Competitive Fees with substantial discounts for multiple tests.
All of our Technicians are accredited members of The Independent
Airtightness Testing Scheme (iATS)
Flexible Test Appointments Including Weekends
Domestic & Commercial Units Tested
Recent Air Tightness Testing Projects
EPS Group: A Partner for those in the Construction Industry
We value the importance of a solid working relationship with those in the construction industry, and for many, we serve as the reliable go-to-company to entrust from the planning stage of a development through to completion.
What Our Clients say: