Determining the Economic Effects of using Building Physics tools during the Building Process
Abstract (Summary)Since the basic concepts in the area of building physics are usually ignored, preventable failures are continuing to occur in modern buildings. The aim of this project is to evaluate the economic effects of different building physics aspects during the different stages in the building process and show the importance of applying building physics to designs. The hypothesis of this project is that economic benefits can be gained by mastering the economic effects related to building physics aspects in the building process, especially during the design and construction phases. The methods used for this report included a literature review, a case study, interviews and a study of archived data. The literature study showed that there is a need and a potential future market in using building physics during the design phase of a construction project. It also revealed that there is not much information on the economic effects of using building physics. The case study showed that in regards to ventilation systems, the system with lowest initial cost is not the best value for money over the long-term perspective. After 50 years, it was calculated to be the same cost as the more expensive supply-exhaust system with heat recovery. Interviews with engineering consultants showed that computer based tools are not used because they are too expensive, too difficult to use, require long learning times, require too much time to execute. It also appears that the education of the consultant plays a larger role in their ability with respect to building physics when compared to their level of experience. A study of data from SSN (National Organisation for Aid to Owners of Private Small Houses) showed the costs of repairing damages that can occur from using a crawlspace foundation are on average 33% of the market value of the house.
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Date of Publication:01/01/2003