I just ordered the Retrotec house and duct simulator to use in our next HERS rater class and was wondering what other trainers do to give students practice with the pressure testing equipment in the classroom. Do you use a simulator? If so, which one? FSEC also has one, which they demonstrated at last year's RESNET conference. Are there others available commercially? Do you have one that your company built? Or do you just do this part all in the field?

I'll post my first experience with the Retrotec simulator here after our class.

Tags: equipment, pressure, testing

Views: 84

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Allison.  At NYSWDA we use a 650 sq. ft. pressure house to train everything from blower door basics to advanced pressure diagnostics.  We also have used Anthony Cox's House of Pressure and lately have been using EnergyWright's ZPD House tabletop pressure house for training.  We have found the process of going from classroom basics on pressure diagnostics, to tactile practice on a tabletop model, to full immersion inside a full-sized pressure house is an effective way to provide a solid foundation in pressure diagnostics training.

You can read about Pressure House Learning in Real Time in the July 2010 issue of Home Energy magazine.

We haven't used Retrotec's simulator tents, but it looks like a good incremental step in delivering hands-on training in pressure fundamentals.

 

Thanks, Dale. We don't have our own facility yet, but when we do, our plan is to outfit it similarly to NYSWDA's. (I doubt we'll have so many furnaces, though.) I'd never heard of EnergyWright before, so I really appreciate that. I just put a call in to them and am waiting for a return call now.
Dale, that's an impressive set up. Breaking down the training with those three levels sounds like an excellent foundation for quality learning. I only wish more trainers out there were as committed as you, and others here, are. The level of training that some customers come to us with is unacceptable.

Hi Dale,

 

Did NYSWDA design and build the house or was this purchased somewhere ? I'm curious to see what it looks like.

Our full-sized pressure house was designed and built by NYSWDA.  Click on the links in my reply above to see pictures and an article about it.  There are also pics on this website.

 

Dale

Allison, this is James McGarvey.  I was the first Ex Director at NIYSWDA and helped design the house Dale spoke of.  I have come out of retirement to do the BPI Trainings in Charlotte, NC with AppleBlossom Energy.  We are leasing a temporary space and therefore built a low cost training lab, will be upgrading when we get our own property.  For a few hundred dollars we built a simple OSB board box, 12'x12'x8' high, divided into two rooms.  We installed all three grades of bat insulation along with sprayed cellulose and covered with lexon so students can view and see the difference in air leakage when blower door is on.  We installed a used gas hot water heater along with a gas oven.  We put in a small dropped area to represent an attic with sliders to control attic vent and house to attic leakage.   

We have two doors so blower door can be set up.  We can teach the Blower Door usage, CAZ zone testing, spillage, draft, and CO on the hot water tank and of course the proper way to test an oven.  We use the blower door to simulate house fans for CAZ tests.  We will be adding a box inside and outside with registers, ducts, and controlled leakage so we can teach Duct Leakage testing.  Only problem we have is oven produces over 2000 PPM of CO so we have to ventilate when we test the oven.  As most of the homes in our area here are all electric it is useful to have our cheap lab for training and for field testing as we can simulate most CAZ problems.  I think this type of lab can be built for less than $500 dollars and cheaper if you can use recycled lumber.  Good luck, james

RSS

Home Energy Pros

Home Energy Pros was founded by the developers of Home Energy Saver Pro (sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy,) and brought to you in partnership with Home Energy magazine.

Latest Activity

Charlie Hewitt posted a blog post

Residential Electric Load Disaggregation

“What gets measured gets managed” is a quote often attributed to the venerable management expert…See More
10 hours ago
Kurt Albershardt replied to Larry Schaffert's discussion How to correctly insulate exterior wall in a 1900 house?
"Balloon framed houses make for easy upgrades IME.  We cover the open bays from the sill plate…"
10 hours ago
Kurt Albershardt replied to William Fisher's discussion Can tankless water heaters provide hot water even when the groundwater is fairly cold?
"There are a number of approaches that can work depending on the specifics of your situation. What…"
10 hours ago
Bob Mariani joined allen p tanner's group
Thumbnail

Energy Auditing Equipment for Sale, Trade or to Purchase

Discuss the pros and cons of the equipment you are interested in prior to purchase. Post equipment…See More
21 hours ago
Bob Mariani replied to William Parlapiano's discussion Equipment for Sale Updated April 9, 2015 in the group Energy Auditing Equipment for Sale, Trade or to Purchase
"I would be interested in a package deal for the items marked as "Available"  Email…"
21 hours ago
Steven Lewis replied to William Fisher's discussion Can tankless water heaters provide hot water even when the groundwater is fairly cold?
"Look at reducing the ambient humidity in the home.  The dew point is the key to the…"
Friday
Olivia Taylor posted blog posts
Friday
norman farwell replied to Bryan Pringle's discussion Dense packed cellulose in basement?
"Ha, we're on the same wavelength.  That's the big question--I'm still thinking…"
Thursday

© 2015   Created by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service