Building Energy Ratings (BERs) and DECs
We carry out Commercial and Domestic BER Assessments and can produce certificates and advisory reports. BER certificates are a legal requirement for new builds and for homeowners who are renting or selling.
As Non Domestic Energy Assessors we also publish Display Energy Certificates (DECs) which are a legal requirement for all Public Building Owners.
When a building receives planning permission after the 9th January 2013, it is now mandatory that a BER Certificate is published when the building is complete. It is also requirement that a final BER is published within 2 years of publishing a Preliminary BER, when a house is sold off the drawings.
NSAI certified Airtightness Tests
It is now mandatory to carry out Air Tightness Tests for all new dwellings, in order to comply to 2008 and 2011 Building Regulations.
Up to 20% of heat is lost through unwanted air leaks, which is the single biggest contributor to energy consumption. Airtightness Tests can last up to 2 hours and with the use of a thermal imaging camera or smoke pencil, it is easy to identify where heat loss occurs. Insulation will improve your buildings energy performance, but heat loss can still exist through unwanted air leaks.
Airtightness Tests also calculate the air permeability level, which is now mandatory for new buildings to comply with Building Regulations.There is an old saying "build tight, ventilate right". It is very important that a building is properly ventilated relative to its airtightness level. Otherwise, it can lead to poor air quality and mould growth, which results in an uncomfortable and unhealthy indoor environment. It also increases the risk of radon and carbon monoxide accumulation.
So always be sure that your house is properly ventilated with either trickle vents, passive, mechanical ventilation, or using windows that can be secured in a slightly open position.
Smart Energy Savings are members of the IVIA. We will help you decide which system is more suited to your buildings airtightness level. Heat Recovery Ventilation Systems operate more efficiently at an airtightness level that doesn't exceed 1.5m3/hr at 50 pa.
Air Tight Membrane (Barrier)
Air leakage is defined as the flow of air through gaps and cracks in the building fabric. Uncontrolled air leakage increases the amount of heat loss as warm air is displaced through the envelope by colder air from outside. Air leakage of warm damp air through the building structure can also lead to condensation within the fabric (interstitial condensation), which reduces insulation performance and causes fabric deterioration.
The way to good air tightness is a continuous air-resistant layer all around the inside of the building. This includes under and around the ground floor, across the external walls and under the roof, to seal the inside from the outside.
A Rated / Passive House Assistance
The term "PassivHaus" refers to a specific construction standard for buildings which have excellent comfort conditions with very low energy consumption. The principles can be applied not only to the residential sector but also to commercial, industrial and public buildings. The key elements in passive house construction are airtightness, thermal windows, insulation, thermal bridge free joints, and heat recovery ventilation.
Smart Energy Savings are members of the Passive House Association of Ireland which promotes the passive house concept of design and construction. We have been trained to use the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) since attending a course at their Institute in Darmstadt, Germany. Much of the new Part L 2011 Building Regulations are designed to passive house standards. We can act as airtightness consultants and provide assistance to the construction team. We will help you meet your passive house target of 0.6ach at 50 Pa and can carry out a final blower door test to passive house standards.