IAQ issues are rising to the front and are becoming one of the most costly concerns of the decade. Moisture and microbial contamination are making headlines time and time again. As LEEDS (1) (see what is LEEDS below) becomes more and more commonly implemented in industrial, commercial, and now residential buildings, retrofitting is creating additional challenges. If these challenges are not properly addressed, building and occupant health will be affected. Building IAQ will suffer.
Before you Build or Ad-on: Design and building techniques are changing as a result of energy cost and consumption. These impacts can not be ignored. Heating and cooling cost are rising year after year. The family budgets are shrinking and the family unit is feeling it.
Building Codes: Building codes are changing as a means of helping reduce future energy cost as well reduce the overall consumption that drives our economy. Resources are becoming more difficult and more expensive to produce; all impacting the family budget.
Choosing The Right Builder: Choosing a builder use to be easier at one time – which builder was giving me the best price for what I am looking for. Today, as a result of the changing building codes, many other factors now come into play when it comes to choosing a qualified builder.
Not every builder is the same nor can it be said that every builder posses the same amount of knowledge and experience when it comes to building your home, addition, or completing needed repairs. Cost also seems to be a huge factor when it comes to getting the expected quality. Will the contractor keep within quality standards? Does the contractor of choice understand the impacts of leaving out a step or required material? These are real questions and may have serious impacts if not considered.
Cost has a powerful impact upon the end results. Is the price really a good price? Do you know what your getting for your money? Do you understand the building trade or building codes? These questions must be answered and when answered have the ability to bring some type of reassurance. Most consumers have not sought out answers to these questions only to find themselves dealing with the project years down the road.
Does Your Contractor Understand The Impact(s):
Many contractors (or the hired help) do not fully understand the impacts of adding or eliminating building materials. Eliminating or adding various building components may greatly impact building design and / or the future indoor air quality, building health, or health of building occupants.
Building codes changes: By the time changes to the building codes are realized or implemented, many years have passed and many more consumers have been had to pay damages out of their own pockets. The contractors follow and rely upon the building codes to direct their building practices although many building codes do not address unexpected results. Years of implementing building codes become the means by which codes officials realize the values of the building codes. It may appear that societies consumers may be the scale in which determines the real benefits of building codes.
Bob Hawley has over 25 plus years of construction, remodeling, and fire and water damage experience (see Bob Hawley’s IAQ profile). IAQ has played and important part of these projects. IAQ not only impacts the workers but the building and building owner. Critical thinking and being able to think out of the box is a must when seeking solutions to mitigating contaminants or microbial damages. Bob also holds a valid Massachusetts General Contractor’s license and has numerous professional IAQ certifications confirming an expected body of knowledge and field experience that is right for your project.
Call Environmental AirTechs 413.391.0342 to schedule an inspection or consulting appointment.
1. What is LEEDS?
According to the U.S. Green Building Council, “LEED’s” is a third-party certification program and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings. LEED gives building owners and operators the tools they need to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance. LEED promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.