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Wednesday, 12 July 2017 13:17

Physics and Fire

House Struck by LightningThis image of a house struck by lightning reminds us of the awesome power of Mother Nature. Easily enough power to explode a metal roof and set a house ablaze in a mere instant. But for all her raw power she is still subject to the Laws of Physics. Since fire and lightning are forms of energy, they are influenced by the same mechanisms that influence energy loss in a home. If you look at the wall of the house on the left hand side of this image, you can see a clear line where the fire stopped moving down. This is a great visual of the Neutral Pressure Plane in a house! 

Pressure transfer BBWX MATCHING CARDS 63

The Neutral Pressure Plane is a product of the Stack Effect driven by the Laws of Physics. High pressure goes to low pressure creating a chimney effect in buildings where Air/Energy/Fire is drawn in through the bottom and out through the top of the building. In the middle of the house, right between the areas of high and low pressure is the neutral pressure plane. Not a lot happens here, especially between the interior and exterior of the house, because there is no pressure difference that would cause a transfer. Since the Neutral Pressure Plane is typically located around the middle of your walls and so are your windows, replacing your windows will NOT decrease your energy bills.



Friday, 29 July 2016 15:03

Baby Its Hot Outside

hotoutsideBaby, its hot outside!

And air conditioners are running on high.

Do you still feel the heat? Have you had your HVAC systems checked and all is well? It just may be a problem of air leakage from places you could never imagine. What do we mean by air leakage? No matter how old or how new your building is, there are penetrations that you can see and some that you cannot. These leaks can affect comfort when it is hot or cold outside, and they have a huge impact on your indoor air quality and therefore your health all year round.

“Everything is Connected”, as we say at Better Building Works. If you have air leakage from bad places in your home like crawlspaces and attics (most of us do), then you have poor indoor air quality. If your indoor air quality is poor, your cognitive functioning may also be poor. Several studies (one recently from Harvard University) show the correlation between cognitive functioning and indoor air quality. Have you ever felt “foggy” and tired during the day and found that a short walk around the block in fresh air helps? That’s what we are talking about!

Fact is: we spend 90% of our time inside our buildings. No matter if it is in our homes, our offices, gyms, hospitals, retirement communities, schools, and the like, we are inside, breathing the air that is being filtered through the air systems. What if there are leaky ducts, pulling unhealthy air and particulates into our buildings? Leaky ducts will carry this bad air farther through the duct system and therefore, throughout the building. Think about asthmatics, our elderly parents, our kids in school - they can all have improved health, critical thinking and reasoning skills just by being sure our buildings are sealed tight and ventilated right.

Any “one size fits all” solution is not a solution. Your building is different from any other building, we get that! We use science and technology to find the right solution for your building. Using a blower door test and an infra-red camera, we can not only find a leakage problem, we can show you where the air is swooping in, and how to fix it cost-effectively. Call us!

Leap day celebration post 01

Join us for a bright green toast to our favorite, smartest clients at 310 2nd Street, 4:30 - 6:30 on Monday, February 29, 2016 and we’ll tell you how they were able to kick those “winter time energy blues” and how you can too! Stop by to find out how your home can make you money and give you peace of mind while you enjoy a custom cocktail of building science, Ask the ScientistTM 20:20 Question Game and the Better Building Works Team. BYOC (Bring Your Own Curiosity!) We'll supply the drinks. Everyone is invited! 

But why wait? Check out some of our previous blog posts and client profiles and get a head start on kicking those “winter time energy blues”.

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