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Strategies for Passing a Whole Building Air Barrier Test

Speaker: Petersen Lambert, PE, BECxP, CxA+BE

Online Webinar

Thursday, July 30, 2020

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Full Seminar

Registration Closed


Since 2012, the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and ASHRAE 90.1 have required that buildings incorporate air barriers as a means to reduce unintended air leakage from buildings.  Air barrier design is a critical part of a building’s exterior enclosure for preventing moisture ingress and conserving energy.

Whole building air barrier testing is fast becoming the norm.  Whether your building is state energy code mandated or federal government USACE air barrier testing mandated, passing this test by meeting the minimum air leakage requirements is critical to the success of your project. 

There are many challenges that can make passing a whole building air barrier test difficult, such as the proper design and proper construction of an air barrier.  Incorrect or deferred design decisions, and late-in-the-game substitutions can have unintended consequences that do not become fully apparent until the whole building air barrier testing is conducted near the end of construction. These “gaps in the wraps” are not discovered until it is usually too late to cost effectively fix the problem.

During the presentation, ABBT will address overcoming the challenges during both design and construction to ensure successful quality assurance and quality control of the air barrier system.

Attendees will review the importance of the early selection and design of the project’s air barrier requirements, as well as the necessity of properly coordinating efforts between disciplines. ABBT will illustrate what steps can be taken to maximize the probability of a successful project with specific examples of past projects, including findings from conducting dozens of whole building air barrier tests.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review critical aspects of air barrier design

  2. Determine the keys to passing a Whole Building Air Barrier Test

  3. Outline successful construction QA/QC protocols for air barriers

  4. Review ABBT past examples of whole building testing

Keywords: Whole Air Barrier Test, Air Barrier Testing, IECC Whole Air Barrier Test, ASHRAE 90.1, ASHRAE 90.1 Whole Air Barrier Test, Passing Air Barrier Test

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