Building Enclosure Consulting
Design Reviews for Air Barrier Continuity
Building enclosures, or building envelopes, provide separation between the interior and exterior of the structure. The building enclosure satisfies the primary function of the structure-shelter from the elements. Other systems of the structure such as HVAC, plumbing, lighting, etc. are ancillary to the primary function of the structure- shelter. Building enclosures consist of the materials, assemblies, components and systems that provide the barrier between conditioned space and the outdoors. The first step towards an effective building enclosure is a quality design.
Clear understanding of air barrier continuity is critical during the design phase, construction phase and final testing. Clear understanding of air barrier durability and proper installation methods is critical to longevity of the air barrier system. Loss of air barrier continuity and system failure is likely to occur early in the life of the structure without robust, durable design and installation.
TMI® offers building enclosure consulting services aimed to identify and resolve design issues before construction starts. Field issues that occur during construction can often be linked to poorly designed air barrier enclosure details. Our qualified professionals look closely at every detail of the enclosure design to provide best practice recommendations for potential air barrier issues. In-depth examinations of project specifications can reveal requirements that are often overlooked or misinterpreted in the bidding process. Our recommendations often provide simpler, more robust, and more cost effective solutions than the original design.
TMI® has completed air barrier design reviews for USACE and NAVFAC projects throughout the United States. Our in-depth design reviews include pages of narrative feedback as well as notated construction drawings showing specific areas of concern. In our experience, identifying potential issues before construction is the best way to avoid issues in the field during construction. Let our experts help you better understand the complexities of today’s air barrier systems.
AIR BARRIER SYSTEM
Pre-Installation Meetings and Consulting
Coordinating trade work on large construction projects can be a challenge in itself. Coordination among contractors becomes even more challenging when you factor in today’s increasingly complex building enclosure air barrier designs and materials. Pre-installation meetings are an opportunity to effectively sequence trade work and assign responsibilities related to the air barrier and building envelope. Our qualified professionals can help guide the pre-installation process through the major sequencing and material compatibility concerns associated with air barrier building enclosure installations.
When it comes to pre-installation meetings, we set ourselves apart by putting extra emphasis on the effective coordination and sequencing of trade work around air barrier work. Air barrier materials have strict application limitations, and tie-into other building components serving as air barrier components. The responsibility to make the air barrier continuous from one trade’s work to the other trade’s work is not often clearly defined or understood. Materials intended as air barriers are commonly installed by roofing, masonry, insulation or waterproofing trades unfamiliar with more stringent air barrier limitations. Frequently mechanical trades are unaware of the air barrier or how to treat their penetrations through it. Our experts spend the time during pre-installation meetings to provide valuable guidance in scheduling trade work in conjunction with air barrier system installation.
At TMI®, we understand the importance of a smoothly-operating job-site. Our air barrier consulting services aim to strive to help our clients towards a more manageable project. Our technicians make site-visits to do anything from liaison with material manufacturer representatives to simply providing air barrier quality assurance on day-to-day application.
How we help our clients
When coordinating a pre-installation meeting, TMI® prepares a pre-installation conference guide of the air barrier system. Through the use of an integrated mock-up we are able to educate the contractor and the trade subcontractors involved in the project. This ensures everyone has a working knowledge of the air barrier installation, where each trade’s air barrier continuity responsibility begins and ends, and conditions the general contractor must provide for a successful air barrier installation.
Coordination of the design, trades and management teams involved in the construction of an air barrier system is crucial to a successful project. Once an air barrier has been covered, corrective action of any potential problems with the air barrier installation or connections can be extremely costly and time-consuming.
Hygrothermal Roof-Wall Analysis – “WUFI”
What is “ hygrothermal modeling?” The term hygrothermal refers to the relationship or combination of heat and moisture. Hygrothermal modeling, or analysis, applies this relationship specifically to the movement of heat and moisture through building components. Using Wärme Und Feuchte Instationär’s (WUFI) computer-based software, TMI® is able to provide the most accurate models of a building’s hygrothermal properties available. Think of hygrothermal modeling as a simulation that predicts how heat and moisture will transfer through different types of materials and assemblies in your geographic location. Data from modeling provides accurate, useful information that helps determine the best materials for your project.
To learn more about:
Building Envelope Design
Arnold, Chris. “Building Envelope Design Guide – Introduction.” Building Envelope Design Guide. N.p., 01 June 2009. Web. 16 Oct. 2015.