Comparison of Test Cell Thermal Performance and The Empirical Validation of AccuRate in a Cool Temperate Climate

Contemporary building codes demand houses reach a 5 star energy level, and in future a 6 star level will be mandatory. The thermal performance of a new house design is predicted using AccuRate energy rating assessment software, but is it accurate in cool temperate climates? Three light-frame test cells—essentially a one room house—were built for this study to validate AccuRate. The test cells also allowed the thermal performance of lightweight timber houses to be better understood and quantified.

After considering measurements taken in the room, roof and subfloor zones in the three test cells during summer and winter, the report concluded that AccuRate needs to be modified to take into account actual construction parameters and material properties.

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