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Building Enclosure Consulting
Our goal is to see every building enclosure meet both code compliance and performance expectations.
Before detailed decisions are finalized, our clients benefit from a review of the building enclosure design strategies at a conceptual level. This review provides an opportunity to reflect on the basic building science behind the selection of specific assemblies and materials. Experience shows that changes made at the conceptual stage of building envelope design have far less cost impact than those made during construction. A typical Concept Review considers the following:
- Environmental loads
- Energy performance targets and compliance options
- Life cycle expectations
- Constructability, sequencing, and complexity of detailing
- Structural support
Not all of RDH’s clients are able to utilize the entire design and construction process to manage risk. There are, however, strategic opportunities during the design and construction process when a focused effort to assess risk and identify mitigating actions can be beneficial to a project stakeholder. RDH has practical methodologies to aid any participant at any stage of the design and construction process. While each client’s needs are unique, the building science and practical approach offered by RDH is consistent with all of our services.
Construction Document Review
We focus on the details for our clients. There are many design team members involved in the coordination and correlation of construction drawings. We are typically tasked with reviewing the details for integration of the various building enclosure assemblies. This review also includes the identification of additional details needed to convey the design intent.
Our clients also look to RDH to review specifications to confirm they are coordinated with drawings and convey appropriate performance requirements. Our goal is construction details that work, are easy to construct, meet best practice standards, and ultimately have less opportunity for unresolved conditions on-site.
Our field review work provides clients with assurance that construction is conforming to drawings and specifications. The success of any project is dependent on a high level of quality assurance and quality control.
Our field review personnel contribute to the project team’s quality assurance success by conducting regular and thorough reviews of the building enclosure construction. RDH field review staff are experienced personnel with a track record of successful projects and an interest in working cooperatively in a team environment.
We communicate our field review work to the project team by documenting and tracking field observations in a project-specific database. Our clients appreciate that we use digital photographs to illustrate deficiencies and recommended actions whenever possible. Project team members also utilize the database because it allows outstanding action items to be tracked and reported at any time.
In addition to regular and through field review of construction, we also regularly perform various on-site tests in our quality assurance role, including:
- Water penetration testing of glazing assemblies.
- Adhesion testing.
- Membrane thickness testing.
- Whole-building and assembly air leakage testing.
- Thermographic scanning and ultrasonic testing if required to help confirm the performance of new assemblies.