*** BUILDING ENVELOPE FAILURE ***
The Leaky Condo Crisis in the lower mainland of British Columbia relates to multifamily dwelling building envelope failure. A building envelope is the exterior insulated walls, floor and roofs.
Buildings are a very serious science, designed in calculators to function within building code specifications. Regional Climatic Data is supplied from Environment Canada through building codes so we can building sustainably and not impact future generations with what we do today. Unfortunately buildings are signed off as compliant because we can’t see the temperatures associated with their design and energy consumption. That has led to the deregulation of the building industry where we have turned construction into economy where everyone can participate and make money regardless of experience or professional background.
Condos like other building exteriors are designed to reflect solar radiation or they will be “radiated”. Radiation is ionizing wavelengths that cause the building exterior to polarize very fast and can generate extreme heat the building isn’t designed insulated or insured for. Consumer beware when buying a condo because you are accepting responsibility for the entire condo complex and there are more considerations than understood.
Advanced infrared research of many years by Thermografix has produced an inspection application process that verifies function of the building envelope, locates water behind walls with non destructive testing and verifies if the building exterior is being radiated.
Now we know buildings can be radiated, what happens on the inside of radiated buildings?
Go to Building Radiation Information to see examples of solar radiation generating heat. The generated heat affects the entire design criteria including expansion/contraction of the building, fire integrity and energy consumption heating the building. ENERGY LOSS IMAGES
Why do we use low-e windows when the rest of the entire building surface is high-e? The heat generated by solar radiation is coming through the walls as well as there is an enormous heat load atmospherically. The atmospheric heat changes the weather formula contributing to lower air pressure.
Color of the building exteriors impact the amount of radiation where we have recorded darker building exteriors over 90 degrees Celcius or 198 degrees F. Condos on the lower mainland of British Columbia are designed, insulated and insured for a maximum of 33 Degrees C and being radiated to exceed design temperatures.
*** CONDO DRYER VENT DESIGN AND INSTALLATION EXCEEDING MANUFACTURER’S SPECIFICATIONS***
Dryer Installation Guide (PDF 127 KB) – February 2007
Dryer and Exhaust Venting (PDF 236 KB) – February 2007
Clothes dryers have an exhaust vent from the dryer to the exterior of the building, either on the roof or out to the exterior wall. The exhaust length has to be specific to a specific dryer as well as the voltages for the dryer have to be the same as the voltage supplied to the building….i.e…120/240 volts or 120/208 volts. A 240 Volt dryer is less efficient on 208 Volts.
Our inspections of leaky condos found the laundry rooms were located farther back inside the suites which meant the dryer exhaust distances were exceeding appliance exhaust specifications. Dryers are exhausting combustible material(lint) as well as considerable humidity and manufacturers of dryers specify that if you exceed exhaust lengths, fire and water damage are a consideration. Vinyl hoses were used for exhaust when appliance manufacturers stimpulate NO VINYL. The dryer vent design was not considered as a contributor to water inside buildings but should have, they endanger the public.
Buildings exceeding their design temperature as well as dryer vent exhaust lengths have not been considered in leaky condos. Both issues make the buildings non compliant with building codes and consumers are assuming liability for something that is already illegal and an environmental disaster.