Energy efficiency and historic buildings by English Heritage

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39 ENERGY EFFICIENCY IN HISTORIC BUILDINGS – APPLICATION OF PART L OF THE BUILDING REGULATIONS TO HISTORIC AND TRADITIONALLY CONSTRUCTED BUILDINGS Borescope/CCTV investigations These are visual techniques for examining small voids within structures, as well as flues and drains, generally without opening up. They are very useful and cost-effective ways of assessing whether damage has occurred in hidden areas of a construction, and whether upgrading is likely to be possible or worthwhile. Monitoring energy consumption This may be as simple a matter as comparing fuel bills year on year, which can give very useful information over time.

The plugging of holes in the construction caused by later modifications and services installations.  The introduction of removable register plates to limit air movement up chimneys in winter.  The installation of draught-stripping to external doors and windows. English Heritage research (see section 5: Upgrading building elements, Windows) has demonstrated that upgrading original windows can match the air infiltration standards of new factory-made windows at a relatively modest cost.  The restoration of window shutters to full operation.

On the other hand, if internal humidity is adequately buffered, an interior can be comfortable for the occupants at a cooler temperature. However, it is important to recognise that very little of this moisture will disperse effectively right through even a highly permeable wall. In reality, the moisture is typically taken into the surface of the wall a certain distance whilst humidity is high, and the greater part then re-evaporates back into the space when it is no longer being used. It can then dissipate safely through natural ventilation.

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