Energy – SAP, SBEM, EPC & DEC

HRS have a highly trained and experienced team of energy experts that can address all aspects of energy performance, analysis or improvement. HRS have experience of working on a wide spectrum of projects from schools, healthcare buildings and offices to large residential and other commercial projects, so you can be confident that HRS’s energy experts have in-depth knowledge and experience to provide you with innovative and cost-effective solutions.

One of HRS’s key strengths and one of the many things that sets HRS apart from other companies is our ability to provide clients with truly tailored services. HRS can guarantee that you will receive the very best in customer service.

As with so many of the services HRS provide, something that cannot be emphasised enough is to contact HRS early. When it comes to energy services, it is never too early to be thinking or planning ahead. A call or an e-mail to HRS will cost you nothing but could save you lots.

daylighting-calculation-serviceHRS have a specialist team that will work alongside you to ensure you are aware of all the factors that everyone on the design and building team need to be aware of to ensure you achieve your required result.

How do you determine the effectiveness of natural light that is anticipated to penetrate a room?
Factors such as the size of the opening, reflectivity of surfaces and view of clear sky from a window are all taken in to account, as they affect the daylight factor (DF) for the room.

The target daylight factor will be building and room type dependant.

Did you know that daylighting calculations can be used to gain a BREEAM credit, and beneficial in achieving a Code for Sustainable Homes rating? HRS can put together the required reports to satisfy BREEAM, Code for Sustainable Homes and feasibility studies.

If HRS are working with you to achieve your Part L2 compliance (air tightness works), then some of the fundamentals will already be in place to assess the building’s design for natural daylight.

For more information on Daylighting Calculation and related services, please contact 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub.

epc-passEnergy Performance Certificates (EPCs)

From 21st May 2010, any new build, sold or rented property must have an EPC before it can be purchased.

What is an EPC?
An EPC looks similar to the label on a domestic appliance; it shows a representation of the energy efficiency levels and CO2 emissions of a building. The table goes from A+ to G, A+ being very efficient and G being very inefficient.

In addition to the EPC, you get a report that gives you recommendations on how to reduce your energy usage and save money.

An EPC is valid for 10 years.

For a quote or more information on EPCs, including information on buildings that do not need an EPC such as a place of worship, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub.

dec-passWhat is a DEC?
A Display Energy Certificate or DEC is a certificate that shows the energy use in a building that is occupied by public authorities or institutions providing a public service. On 1st October 2008, it became a legal requirement for all buildings with a total useful floor area of over 500m2 that are occupied the by public authorities or institutions providing a public service to prominently display a DEC. DECs have to be renewed annually in order to keep the public informed how energy efficient the building is.

In January 2013 there was an update to the regulations regarding DECs – they are still required, but now DECs on buildings with a floor area of between 500m2 – 1000m2 have a 10 year validity.

DECs use a rating scale from A to G, where A is very efficient and G is very inefficient.

For further information, help, advice or a quotation, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub.

What is an Energy Feasibility Study?
HRS can undertake an energy feasibility study which would look at the different on-site renewable energy technologies available to see which, if any, could be used.

HRS Energy Experts can look at a range of options to then provide you with a fully detailed feasibility report with recommendations of what would be the best and most cost effective solutions for your building. HRS will also make you aware of any grants that are available.

The study takes into account many factors such as location, building orientation, building size, demand for particular energy at any given time, degree days, wind speeds, availability of biomass fuels, planning issues etc.

It may be that simple installation of an air source heat pump is right for you, or you might benefit from a range of renewable energy sources, from photovoltaic farms to wind turbines.

HRS Energy Experts would be happy to discuss how we can help you and work with you as part of your team. If you like any advice, more information or a quote, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub.

Thermal modelling exampleA thermographic survey is a collection of photographs taken using a thermal imaging camera which show the temperature of a building or object. These highly detailed images show differences in temperatures which can tell you a lot about a building which you may not be able to detect in any other way.

Thermographic Surveys/Thermal Imaging Surveys have many benefits:

  • A thermographic survey report can provide you with much needed BREEAM credits (make a hyperlink)
  • They can show where heat loss is occurring in a building, highlighting inadequate or missing insulation
  • They can locate and quantify thermal bridges (make Thermal Bridges words a hyperlink)
  • They can show the location of air leakage paths through the building envelope (again hyperlink)
  • They can show water leakage tracing from building envelope or internal systems failures
  • You can locate with ease hidden or buried systems like pipes, central heating, under floor heating
  • They are great for examining all buildings, but in the case of a historic or listed building a thermographic survey is a way you can undertake a non-intrusive visualisation of structural or other components.

If you would like more information, advice or a quotation, one of HRS’s very experienced thermographers would be happy to discuss if a thermographic survey would be beneficial to you. Please contact us on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub ».

thermal-bridging-surface-condensation

Thermal Bridging is sometimes known as a cold bridge, both are referring to a weak spot in the insulation surrounding a building which occurs when there is a break in the continuity, or a penetration of the insulation. This can lead to the risk of surface condensation and unhappy clients. HRS know it is a problem for many, this is why HRS’s team of thermal experts work closely with many companies from the start of a project, providing expert advice and using sophisticated software to ensure that HRS provide you with the most cost effective solutions.

Common areas where thermal/cold bridging occurs are junctions between floors, walls and ceilings. lintels, jambs and balconies are also problem areas.

What is the best way to avoid Thermal Bridging / Cold Bridging?
The most effective way of avoiding a thermal bridging problem is to design it out. HRS can work closely with you to eradicate or minimize any problem areas.

HRS have a team of Thermal experts that would be happy to look at your drawings and give you advice on the more cost effective way to resolve your thermal bridging issues.

If you like any advice, more information or a quote, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub.

BREEAM-thermal-modellingThermal modelling involves taking designs and building specifications, representing them in a 3 dimensional model and running a year-long simulation to provide detailed results.

The thermal model is a bespoke model for a particular building with a specific location and orientation. Once the thermal model has been constructed, it can be used to influence the building’s design specifications. Changes can be made to U-Values and to building services specifications to assess the effect those changes may have on controlling internal temperatures.

Benefits of using thermal model early in the design process:

  • It can really help in making critical decisions which could lead to reduction in building costs and a highly energy efficient building with lower running costs
  • Predict the likelihood of overheating during the summer months
  • Predict the energy demands for lighting, heating etc for certain months or for a year
  • Daylight calculations can help designers to minimise artificial lighting and maximise available natural light
  • Can be used to demonstrate compliance with BREEAM 2014 Hea 04, BREEAM 2011 Hea 03 and BREEAM 2008 Hea 10
  • Likely energy requirements can be tied in with associated CO2 emissions and fed back into sustainability/planning reports
  • Solar shading analysis can be used to assist summer shading requirements or selecting most appropriate solar panel locations

HRS have a highly trained team that would be happy to discuss how it can be used to provide cost savings. If you would like more information or a quote, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub

.

SAP Logo

SAP stands for Standard Assessment Procedure and it is used to assess and compare the energy and environmental performance of dwellings.

Do I have to have a SAP Assessment?
Yes, a SAP calculation and rating has been a requirement of the Building Regulations Part L since 1995, so all new homes need to have a SAP calculation/rating. Homes which have been converted and extended also need a SAP carrying out, but slightly different rules apply. As a general rule, you do not need a SAP on an extension. All dwellings on a site need a SAP assessment.

It is recommended that the sooner you can have your SAP assessment carried out the better. SAP calculations must be submitted to building control before works start on site. Think design stage – SAP should be done.

If you need more information or if you would like a quote for a SAP, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / email: info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub. Please note that the more SAPs you have done, the lower the cost.

SBEM Assessment

SBEM stands for Simplified Building Energy Model. SBEMs are designed to assess and compare energy in non-residential buildings.

Do I need an SBEM Assessment?
If your new commercial premises is over 50m2, you will need to do an SBEM assessment as a mandatory requirement. Some (not all) extensions and renovations will need an SBEM assessment too, although there are some exceptions, i.e. places of worship and unheated buildings. To check if your building requires an SBEM and for any other advice, please contact the HRS energy team who would be happy to help you.

When Should an SBEM Assessment be Carried Out?
An SBEM assessment comes in two parts. The Design Stage SBEM assessment is the first part, which needs to be completed before construction starts. Think Design Stage – Think SBEM.

The second stage is when the building is completed, this is called an as-built SBEM and will also include the results of the air tightness test (if completed). An Energy Performance Certificate can then be issued.

If would you like to discuss any of the above, need more information, help or a quotation, please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 / e-mail:  info@hrsservices.co.uk or click to go to the KNOWLEDGE Hub. The HRS Energy Team would be happy to help you.

SBEM Required Information Checklist (pdf) >

DSM stands for Dynamic Simulation Modelling.
This is also sometimes known as thermal modelling. DSM calculations are more powerful than SBEM and therefore more accurately reflect the building being modelled. It uses an hourly simulation taking into account the different internal and external building parameters on hourly time steps rather than the monthly average on a steady state for the SBEM methodology. In the majority of cases it is therefore beneficial to use DSM instead of SBEM. There are also now more than often instances when DSM must be used due to the complexity of the building. For instance, if the building design incorporates an atrium, or include important shading devices or the other features such as night time cooling with thermal coupling. Our philosophy is that at HRS we will use DSM assessment in the majority of cases, with market leading IES-VE software as a standard due to the benefits it offers and to standardise the work flow with other services.

What does SAP stand for?
SAP stands for Standard Assessment Procedure.

What is a SAP Calculation?
A SAP is the Government’s approved procedure for energy rating domestic dwellings.

It is the methodology used by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) to assess and compare the energy and environmental performance of dwellings. The reason for doing this is to provide accurate and reliable assessments of dwelling energy performances that are required to underpin energy and environmental policy initiatives.

SAP works by assessing how much energy a dwelling will consume and how much carbon dioxide (CO2) will be emitted in delivering a defined level of comfort and service provision, based on standardised occupancy conditions. This enables a like-for-like comparison of dwelling performance.

Properties are awarded a rating between 1 and 100. A rating of 1 represents very high running costs, whilst a score of 100 indicates zero energy cost. It is however worth knowing that dwellings can exceed 100 where they are net exporters of energy e.g. through PV electricity generation.

When is a SAP calculation required?
A SAP is required when new dwellings are constructed and existing homes are converted or extended under current Building Regulations.

When should the assessment be carried out?
The sooner the better – DER/TER calculations must be submitted to building control before work starts on site. Earl involvement allows the energy efficiency of the dwelling to be considered whilst it is being designed, ensuring a cost effective solution to compliance is achieved.

An ‘As Built’ calculation will then be required at the end of the project before handover. It is important to consider the impact of any design changes made during construction. Apparent cost savings made during VE, may adversely affect the targeted rating for Building Regulations and Code assessments.

What is a building thermographic survey?
A thermographic survey is also sometimes referred to as ‘thermal imaging’ or ‘infrared surveying’.

A thermographic survey is used as a way of indicating the heat distribution over the surface of a building envelope. This remote-sensing technique can be carried out with minimal disturbance by a single operator and allows qualitative detection of air leakage pathways and insulation discontinuities.

Thermographic Surveys are carried out to BS EN 13187:1999: Thermal performance of buildings – qualitative detection of thermal irregularities in building envelopes – infra-red method and BRE Report 176 – A Practical Guide To Infra-Red Thermography For Building Surveys.

When would I need a thermographic survey?
Credits for BREEAM 2011/2014 are available if the following is carried out:
The principal contractor accounts for a thermographic survey within the project budget and program of works.
Once construction is complete a thermographic survey of the building fabric is undertaken in accordance with the appropriate standard and overseen by a professional body holding a valid Level 2 certificate in thermography (as defined by the UKTA website HYPERLINK “http://www.ukta.org” http://www.ukta.org)

The survey confirms:

  • Continuity of insulation in accordance with the construction drawings Avoidance of excessive thermal bridging Avoidance of air leakage paths through the fabric (except through intentional openings) Any defects identified via the post construction inspections are rectified.
  • Thermographic surveys are also a means to demonstrate compliance with Part L Building Regulations for continuity of insulation.
  • Thermographic surveys can also be used to identify water penetration/moisture ingress, underfloor heating pipe location and district heating pipes and anomalies.

What are the site requirements for a thermographic survey?

SURVEY WEATHER CONDITIONS
HRS have assumed that the survey will be carried out under the following weather conditions: On a dry and reasonably overcast day or night. Ideally no direct sunlight on the building in the 12 hours prior to and during the survey. No heavy precipitation, mist, ice, fog, snow prior to or during the survey. Wind speed should be no greater than 5m/s (11 mph) for external surveys.

DUE TO THE STRICT WEATHER CONDITIONS NEEDED FOR AN ACCURATE THERMOGRAPHIC SURVEY, HRS SERVICES ADVISE AGAINST CARRYING OUT SURVEYS BETWEEEN MID-JUNE AND MID-SEPTEMBER.

BUILDING CONDITION/READINESS
The integrity of the building envelope should be complete for the survey. Drawings (plans and sections) and specification details regarding the areas to be surveyed shall be supplied prior to the survey taking place.

For a BREEAM credit, 100% of the roof and elevations must be surveyed, unless it can be demonstrated to be unpractical.

HRS have assumed that the building will have the following conditions:

Internal / external temperature difference on the entire building must be a MINIMIUM of 10°C for AT LEAST 12 hours prior to the survey. If not, you will not achieve compliance for BREEAM credit or BS EN 13187:1999, whichever applies.

If possible, the internal pressure of the building should be raised by 10 Pascals by switching off the extract units.

Plant rooms can be included in the survey if the thermal line of the building follows the plant room walls.

Solar panels and plant on a roof is a limitation to the survey. Please check with your BREEAM assessor if this is acceptable.

Alternative is to do survey internally if possible.

HRS require the client to advise them of any adverse weather conditions on site on the day of the survey.

HRS recommends that the client takes their own internal/external temperatures before the survey to ensure temperature difference can be achieved.

How can HRS help?
HRS has over 10 years’ experience of carrying out thermographic surveys and hold PCN Level II certification for Building Thermography with Professional membership of the British Institute for Non-Destructive testing (BINDT). This means that we are fully competent and qualified to provide compliant reports for local authority and BREEAM requirements.

HRS’s wide ranging technical and practical experience of building technology, design issues and potential faults in buildings allow us to give a high level of service during the survey, interpreting the results and providing pragmatic solutions.

What is thermal bridging analysis?
Building fabric heat loss is calculated and taken into account in Part L Building regulations using the U-values for walls/floor etc. Further heat loss also occurs at junctions such as between walls and roofs, at gutters and around openings such as windows and doors. In these areas, it is known as thermal bridges, the presence of high conductivity materials crossing the insulation lead to a higher heat flow, which is locally higher than in surrounding areas. These add to the total energy demand of the building.

A second consequence of thermal bridging is the lower internal surface temperatures caused by the increased heat flow. Depending on the environmental conditions within the building and the nature of the internal surfaces this can lead to a risk of surface condensation.

Thermal bridging analysis uses 2D or 3D computer simulation depending on the nature of the detail in question to quantify the heat loss through thermal conductivity at junctions of building components.

Why would I need it?
Thermal bridging analysis can confirm thermal bridging (psi) values. These can be entered into the SBEM and SAP compliance calculations required for Part L Building Regulations to determine an overall y-value. Results can assist with carbon emissions and fabric energy efficiency targets.

Modelling can also be utilised to determine whether proposed design details pose a risk of surface condensation by calculating the temperature factor

What information will be required to carry out thermal bridging/condensation analysis?
Information to be provided by the client to HRS will include the following

Relevant drawing details by Architect /Contractor

Most up to date architect’s/structural details
Thermal conductivities for various elements contained within the details
Proposed building usage (main activity) and expected internal design temperatures if different from the typical known standards

How can HRS help?
HRS has experience of carrying out assessments on a full range of building types and project sizes. HRS also uses approved industry standard (ISO 10211) HEAT software coupled with trained and experienced modellers. This means that we are fully competent and qualified to provide compliant reports for client and local authority requirements.

HRS’s wide ranging technical and practical experience of building technology, design issues and potential faults in buildings allow us to give a high level of service during the modelling, interpreting the results and providing pragmatic solutions.

What does SBEM stand for?
SBEM stands for Simplified Building Energy Model.

What is SBEM?
SBEM is a computer program that provides an analysis of a building’s energy consumption. SBEM estimates the monthly energy use and carbon emissions of a building. This was developed for the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) to partially satisfy the requirements of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD).

Do all building needs a SBEM assessment?
Nearly all new non-domestic buildings require an SBEM prior to construction. It is normally a requirement of Building Control at this early stage. There are some exceptions, but these are very few. If you’re not sure if your building needs an SBEM assessment, please contact the HRS Energy team who would be happy to advise.

What does DSM stand for?
DSM stands for Dynamic Simulation Model. This is also known as thermal modelling.

When would I need a DSM?
If your building design is complicated or has an unusual heating, cooling or ventilation strategy, then you may need a DSM (Dynamic Simulation Model). This model can be tailored to be more reflective of a complicated design. It is worth knowing that if your building design incorporates extensive glazing, non-standard wall or roof shapes or a bespoke services strategy then there is a strong possibility that you will need a DSM (Dynamic Simulation Model). If you are unsure, please contact the HRS Energy team who would be more than happy to help.

What does EPC stand for?
EPC stands for Energy Performance Certificate.

Do all buildings need an EPC?
If you are building, planning to rent out or planning to sell a dwelling or non-dwelling, then you need to have an EPC.

Exemptions apply for:

  • Buildings used as places of worship or for religious activities
  • Temporary buildings
  • Buildings with low energy demand
  • Stand-alone buildings with a floor area <50m2
  • Buildings that are due to be demolished (certain stipulations apply)
  • Buildings and monuments officially protected as part of a designated environment, or because of their special architectural or historic merit.

How long is an EPC valid for?
An EPC is valid for ten years.

Whose responsibility is it to obtain an Energy Performance Certificate for a newly constructed dwelling or non-dwelling?
The company or person carrying out the construction is responsible

Do I need to show that the building has an EPC when selling or letting?
When a dwelling or non-dwelling is being offered for sale, the seller must make an EPC available to prospective buyers. If it is in the process of being offered to let, the prospective landlord must make an EPC available.

How do I get an EPC?

Please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 or e-mail info@hrsservices.co.uk and one of HRS’s highly experienced Energy Assessors would be more than happy to discuss your requirements.

When putting together an EPC, what data is assessed?
As an EPC outlines the energy efficiency of a dwelling or non-dwelling. The HRS Energy Assessor would request all relevant information. This would include architectural drawings information and details of services to be installed. All this information is then analysed by one of HRS’s Energy Assessors and an EPC is produced.

What information does an EPC contain?
An EPC provides you and the new owners with an energy efficiency rating for the dwelling or non-dwelling. These are expressed in a rating between ‘A+’ and ‘G’ (A+ being the most efficient). The EPC also contains information on the potential savings that could be made, through the provision of a recommendations report. This includes actions that are not mandatory, but could be used to further enhance the performance of the building, if adhered to.

How much does an Energy Performance Certificate cost?
Prices depend on the number, size and complexity complexity of dwellings or non-dwellings. Please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 or e-mail info@hrsservices.co.uk and one of HRS’s highly experienced Energy Assessors would be more than happy to discuss your requirements.

What does DEC stand for?
DEC stands for Display Energy Certificate.

What is a DEC?
A Display Energy Certificate or DEC is a certificate that shows the energy use in a building that is occupied by public authorities or institutions providing a public service. On 1st October 2008, it became a legal requirement for all buildings with a total useful floor area of over 500m2 that are occupied the by public authorities or institutions providing a public service to prominently display a DEC.

DECs have to be renewed annually in order to keep the public informed how energy efficient the building is.

In January 2013 there was an update to the regulations regarding DECs – they are still required, but now DECs on buildings with a floor area of between 500m2 – 1000m2 have a 10 year validity.

DECs use a rating scale from A to G, where A is very efficient and G is very inefficient.

Do all buildings need to have a DEC?

If the building is greater than 250m2 and is occupied or part-occupied by a public authority or institution, or if the building will provide a public service that is visited by the public, then your building may need to have a DEC.

Who responsibility is it to obtain a DEC?
It is the responsibility of the public authority or relevant institution providing a public service to display a DEC in each of their buildings affected by the legislation.

How do I get a DEC?
Please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 or e-mail HYPERLINK “mailto:info@hrsservices.co.uk” info@hrsservices.co.uk and one of HRS’s highly experienced Energy Assessors would be more than happy to discuss your requirements.

What information is assessed for a DEC?
For a Display Energy Certificate, energy consumption information is assessed. The gross internal area of the building, as well as its type of operation, are both taken into account. Please note that actual meter readings or consignment notes for all fossil fuels used in your buildings are required under this legislation.

What information does a Display Energy Certificate show?
A DEC is a chart showing a building’s operational rating, carbon dioxide emissions and previous operational ratings for the last three years. The operational rating measures the energy efficiency of a building on a scale of ‘A’ to ‘G’, where ‘A’ is the most efficient. HRS will also provide you with an advisory report. This is provided to you at the same time that you get your DEC. This report will contain recommendations on ways in which the energy efficiency of the building can be improved.

Do I need to renew by DEC?
Yes. Where the building has a total useful floor area of more than 1,000m², a Display Energy Certificate is only valid for 12 months. The accompanying advisory report is valid for seven years. Display Energy Certificates and advisory reports for smaller buildings are valid for 10 years.

How much does a Display Energy Certificate cost?
The cost will vary depending on the size and type of the building which requires a DEC.

Please contact HRS on 0800 030 4391 or e-mail info@hrsservices.co.uk and one of HRS’s highly experienced Energy Assessors would be more than happy to discuss your requirements.

HRS can provide you with a complete range of building environmental and sustainability services, meaning you can save time and money, avoid inconvenience and your risks are minimised.

From concept design stage to completion, HRS can work alongside you every step of the way. You and your project would be supported by HRS’s extensive knowledge that has been built up over 30 years, whether you need consultancy or on site advice and guidance, HRS’s large team of consultants and on site technicians are here to support you to make sure that your project hands over on time and within budget.

At HRS we believe strongly in being pro-active and customer focused, providing you with innovative cost-effective solutions.

All you need to do is make one phone call to 0800 030 4391 or email: info@hrsservices.co.uk sending one set of drawings stating what services you require, and HRS will take it from there.

Building and Enviromental Services from HRS

SAP Energy Consultants
NATIONWIDE SERVICE:
0800 030 4391

info@hrsservices.co.uk
KNOWLEDGE HUB
FAQs
“Highly recommend their services. Very helpful in undertaking a thermal survey and obtaining an ‘Energy Performance Certificate’”
Cost Manager, Longcross

Need advice or a quotation give HRS a call on:
0800 030 4391 or email: info@hrsservices.co.uk