Achieve Blower Door Requirements with AeroBarrier Technology

Pass Your Blower Door Test the First Time with AeroBarrier Technology

Trying to hunt down one of the hundreds of potential causes for a failed blower door test can be maddening. But there may be a better way.

Pass Your Blower Door Test the First Time with AeroBarrier Technology
Published April 4, 2022

Many Factors Play a Role in the Outcome of Your Blower Door Test

The 2012 IECC introduced the requirement to test residential units to ensure the building envelope meets the maximum allowed air infiltration rates verified with a blower door test. With a clear understanding of the potential areas where air can enter and leave the building envelope and proper attention to sealing these areas, passing the blower door test is achievable. However, ensuring that all subcontractors who impact the building envelope by installing different materials (concrete to framing), drilling holes, and other activities that compromise the building envelope can be a significant challenge.

There are many leakage paths, and they all must be addressed. Every connection between different materials, gaps, cracks, and holes through both the exterior sheathing and drywall must be sealed. To complicate this, because air is a mixture of gasses, it will find every path during a blower door test to move from outside to inside. Even if it is entering the attic through the vents, moving through the ceiling insulation, past an unsealed gap between the framing top plate and drywall, entering the wall cavity, traveling down the wall cavity, and entering the house through the switch and plug boxes. This is more challenging for small units with many of the same openings, but a much smaller allowed infiltration rate.

Could AeroBarrier Technology Solve Your Blower Door Problems?

EnergyLogic performs thousands of blower door tests every year. Houses under 2,000 square feet, attached units with shared walls, and apartments consistently struggle to pass blower door testing. Running around with a caulk gun trying to locate leaks three days before closing, scheduling another blower door test, and paying another re-inspection fee is frustrating, stressful, and inefficient. What if there was a way to almost guarantee to pass the blower door test the first time? 

AeroBarrier is a technology and process that removes the hope that a unit will pass a blower door test. By pressurizing the building envelope with a blower door to distribute their water-based sealing formula, every gap smaller than ½” is sealed with a safe, Green Guard Gold certified with Ultra-low VOC content material. The process is run for as long as needed to meet the project's requirements. The longer it runs, the tighter the building envelope becomes.

Too Good to be True?

So what is the downside? Blower door testing is performed when the house is complete. AeroBarrier works best when performed immediately after drywall is installed to reduce preparation and clean-up time. AeroBarrier can be performed after a failed blower door test, but the cost to prep and clean up increases the cost significantly. Building AeroBarrier technology into the construction process, especially for apartments, attached housing, and contractors building small units and ADU’s will save time and may save money in meeting a requirement that is not going away.

Ready to Explore the AeroBarrier Difference?

EnergyLogic has experience working with many builders on multiple projects that utilize the AeroBarrier technology. Check out Lakeview on the Rise and L'Avenir to read about the role AeroBarrier played in these projects. We can help you decide if this product is for you. For more information, contact Rusty Buick, Director of Business Development at (720) 305-8436 or rusty.buick@nrglogic.com.

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About the Author
Rusty Buick

Rusty Buick

Rusty Buick is EnergyLogic's Director of Business Development. As a former general contractor specializing in high-performing homes, Rusty loves helping builders appreciate the value of building high-performing, energy-efficient homes for their clients and for future generations. Learn more about Rusty!

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