Having a blower door test conducted on new construction is a newer requirement that some potential homeowners may be unaware of—especially if they have previously built a home in Florida prior to the new changes and were not required to have one done. This unexpected development can lead many to wonder if a blower door test is actually necessary. We’re here to help explain what a blower door test is, so you can be a more informed homebuyer.
A blower door is a type of fan with a calibrator that is installed over an exterior door of a home (usually the front door). It pulls air out from the inside of the home, causing the pressure in the home to drop. When changes in air pressure occur, air around the home will attempt to fill the pressure void in the home and pass through any openings it can find. If air is able to reinfiltrate your home during the blower door testing, it will affect the air pressure in your home, which will be indicated on the calibrator located on the blower door fan.
If your blower door test shows no changes to the air pressure, then the home is well sealed; however, if there were changes to the air pressure after the blower door test was initiated, then there are likely leaks.
Why Are Leaks In A Home An Issue?
If your home “leaks”, that is, allows outside air to get in, that also means your inside air can escape. This can be a great waste of energy, especially during seasonal peaks. If your air conditioning (or heat) is constantly escaping (or outside air can get in and affect the temperature of the home), then your HVAC system will overwork itself to maintain the temperature desired in the home. This can cause a high energy bill and additional wear and tear to your HVAC system.
Additional concerns for leaks in the home include:
Pests can enter the home
Damage caused by pests
Mold growth from water intrusion
Damaged wood or drywall from water intrusion
Poor air quality
Are Blower Door Tests Required?
Since July 1, 2017, a blower door test is now required Florida to determine if the new home construction is up to the current energy code. This new change is under the 6th Edition of the Florida Building Code, Section 402.4.1.2. Previously built/owned homes are not required to undergo a blower door test prior to being sold; however, it is recommended to have one done if the home is over 10-15 years old. By having one done on an older home, you can get ahead of any energy waste, water intrusion consequences, or pests.
Blower Door Testing Company In Tampa Bay
AcuSytem Inspections may specialize in traditional home inspections but we offer over a dozen inspections for private residences and commercial properties. Blower door testing and other energy auditing is one of our many services we provide to residents of Tampa Bay and surrounding counties. Contact us today to schedule a blower door test you are building—or an older home you own or are buying—to see how airtight and energy efficient your home is.