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  • Writer's pictureOnega Inspection Services, LLC

Blower Door Testing in CT For New Construction

Blower Door
Blower Door Testing

What is blower door testing?

Blower door testing is a critical step in ensuring the energy efficiency and air tightness requirement of new construction.

Connecticut and Rhode Island energy codes require that the overall air infiltration of newly constructed homes be tested and verified before occupancy. This test is typically performed as one of the last steps of the home-building process.

So what does a blower door do? A blower door helps identify air leakage points, which can significantly impact a building's overall thermal performance. Here's a comprehensive checklist for builders to prepare themselves for the blower door testing process:

Blower Door Testing Preparation For New Construction

The first step is to provide us with the conditioned square footage of the home and the permit number for your certificate of testing. This is the document that goes to your local Town Official.

Please make sure of the following:

  • Basement ceiling insulation is completed

  • Penetrations in the basement to the outside should be sealed. (ie, hose bibs or vent pipes)

  • The attic access hatch needs to have a gasket or air-sealed

  • Exterior doors should have weatherstripping installed

  • Toilet, sink, and tubs – need to have traps filled

  • All outlets, light switch covers, and light fixtures need to be installed

  • All windows must be closed and locked

  • Bathroom fan housings should be sealed to sheetrock with caulk or aluminum HVAC tape

  • CRITICAL: If air ducts are in the home, they must be sealed to the substrate. (Floor boots sealed, all supply/exhaust boots in drywall sealed.) If these are not sealed we will get bypass leakage which negatively affects the results of the blower door test.

Upon Completion of Blower Door Testing

Once the blower door test is complete, a report will be generated and sent to the client by the end of the day. If the testing results are compliant with the local Connecticut energy code, the test is final and the report can then be submitted to the local building department.

If the test was non-compliant, an additional report will be written and sent to the builder offering recommendations for air sealing to be performed. Once the recommendations are completed we return to the home to retest.

While this is not an exhaustive list, these points will help builders and contractors ensure that their new build passes the blower door test the first time. It's important to note, that blower door testing is not just a regulatory requirement; it's a best building practice that leads to superior building quality and performance for the longevity of the home. If you have questions or want to schedule a blower door test in CT, please reach out to Onega Inspection Services! We would love to talk with you.

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