The importance of thermographic inspections and air tightness testing cannot be understated when investigating the integrity of your building envelope; it I also one of the only ways to accurately check that thermal insulation hidden in the structure meets the requirements for continuity of insulation.
in the case of new buildings, it is a requirement to carry out airtightness testing – once the designed air leakage rate has been established and once completed the measured air permeability is fed into the CO2 emissions calculations. In the case of existing buildings, the guidance on continuity of insulation only applies where new thermal elements (for example walls, floors, and roofs.) are provided, for example when an extension is built. There are no requirements for CO2 emissions calculations or air-tightness testing on existing buildings; although this may be a client requirement.
Regulation 43 of the Building Regulations for England and Wales requires air pressure testing to be carried out on all new buildings, in order to be satisfied that provision has been made to limit heat gains and losses through the building fabric. This includes heat transfer by air leakage. For new dwellings, Building Regulations Approved Document L1A  requires air tightness testing be carried out on a representative sample of dwellings – although this has since been changed to all dwellings. Approved Document L2A relating to new buildings other than dwellings requires an air leakage test to be carried out on all buildings subject to the regulations in accordance with the standard test method.
APT Sound Testing uses the latest Flir high resolution thermal imaging cameras for all our surveys and our thermographic engineers hold a minimum of Level 2 certification – the minimum required to undertake BREEAM thermal surveys.
The importance of using one of our Level 3 trained thermographers cannot be understated as they are trained to be write predictive maintenance and inspection practices and to develop test procedures and ascertain severity criteria. To try and help clients prepare for the thermal imaging survey to their building, we have written the following article: How we carry our thermal Surveys on commercial buildings. Also, this article explains how we previous articles on how to prepare for thermal imaging surveys on commercial buildings.
Also, to help facility managers with their electrical and mechanical surveys, we have written the following article: thermal imaging inspections for facilities management. Also, throughout the UK BREEAM projects are becoming more common place. BREEAM provides extra points to projects that have a BREEAM Thermal survey undertaken. As not many clients are aware of BREEAM thermal surveys, we have included more information in our ‘What is a BREEAM thermal Imaging Survey’ article. Also to try and help clients prepare for their survey please download our Thermal Imaging Checklist.
More details for both our thermal imaging and air tightness testing services can be found on our website at www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk. Also, to help you prepare your building for thermal imaging and air tightness testing, please download our thermal imaging guide and checklist and here for our air tightness testing guide and checklist.