Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing

Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing Contact Details

Gareth Chambers
028 4372 5085
078 4157 3626
53a Wateresk Rd,
County Down
BT31 9EZ
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09:30 am-01:30 pm


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About Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing

Northern Ireland's premier independent PSI Value Assessor

Our services are nationwide but we specialise in ‘Part F’ Building Regulations Compliance and Energy Assessments for the Northern Ireland & UK Markets. This includes SAP Ratings (TER vs DER) – for New Build and Extensions. Air Leakage Testing (Airtightness of Dwellings), SBEM Calculations for Commercial/Non-Domestic jobs and Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs). We have been involved in the Energy Performance and Assessment of buildings for over 14 years.

We do not sell any products so our advice and service calculations are impartial. With the recent Building Regulation changes, the cost of living increases, fuel bills soaring and affordable housing in high demand, the use of Heat pumps, renewable energy systems, and good insulation and airtightness standards are critical.

SAP (Standard Assessment Procedure)
What is a SAP Rating and why do I need one?
Under Part F of the Northern Ireland Building Regulations (Part L in the UK, Section 6 in Scotland), all new dwellings, and all buildings converted to dwellings, need a SAP calculation. Some extensions and renovations need a SAP too – especially if there’s lots of glazing. SAP calculations take into account the energy use of the specific building. All aspects of the Design are taken into account – This includes the energy needed for heating, hot water, lighting and ventilation and shows the dwelling’s overall energy efficiency whilst also checking its Carbon emissions are within an allowable level for Building Regulations. The SAP is also used to create the Energy Performance Certificate.

To meet Part F2 of the Building Regulations in Northern Ireland, nearly all new commercial buildings over 50m² must pass SBEM calculations. And while some extensions, conversions and renovations will also need SBEM calculations, not all of Part F2 will apply to them.

SBEMs measure the overall energy efficiency of buildings, and are used to create the Energy Performance Certificate. To get a total figure, they measure heat loss through the building, available sunlight and air permeability, then combine this with the energy needed for heating, hot water, lighting and ventilation.

What is an EPC?
​Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) show the energy performance rating of buildings. The idea is similar to the well-established energy labels for the sale of white goods such as fridges and washing machines.

There are 2 main types of EPCs. SAP EPC are for New Build Only and generated from the SAP software - these are a requirement of building control and your solicitor when you complete a new property sale or build. EPCs from SAP are provided from detailed drawings, site inspections and installer certificates (for insulation and heating/ventilation etc). Rd EPCs on the other hand are provided for existing buildings. They are based on "reduced data" and based on site inspections and various assumptions based on the age, construction and mechanical systems witnessed in the property.

What is Airtightness testing and why do I need one?​
By now the airtightness test is somewhat a familiar sight on UK & Ireland Construction sites but as a means of a quick recap, here is a brief summary; Air tightness, air leakage or air permeability all refer to the infiltration of cold air into the building and/or the loss of heated air from inside through gaps, cracks, holes, etc in the building fabric. This affects the energy consumption of the building, as additional energy will be required to re-heat the air. It also impacts on the comfort levels of the building and ultimately, left untreated costs property owners more to run their buildings. Air leakage is generally caused by the buoyancy effect of heated air (air rising within a structure) or by the pressure differential caused by wind blowing on a building. Unwanted air leakage significantly increases the space heating demand of a building, as well as causing occupant discomfort from cold draughts. Air leakage can also lead to long-term problems in the building fabric where it is repeatedly damaged by the transmittance of water vapour which results in interstitial condensation.

As accredited thermal modellers, we can produce bespoke psi-value calculations to achieve an accurate, highly efficient, and cost-effective fabric performance for new-build developments.
Building Standards require the insulation envelope of any heated building to be designed and constructed to limit heat loss through thermal bridging. Building Regulations via their technical booklets also require thermal bridging to be taken into account as part of energy assessments. Whilst repeating thermal bridges are accounted for within U-value calculations, a separate psi-value calculation is required to assess non-repeating thermal bridges.


Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing Products & Services

Airtightness Testing
SAP Ratings
SBEM Ratings
Energy Performance Certificates
Thermal Bridging PSI Value Calculations
Building Running Cost Analysis
Building Regulation Compliance
Energy Audits
Energy Saving Consultancy & Design
Highly Glazed Extension Trade Off Calculations

Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing Video

Thermcal Ltd - Building Energy Certification & Testing Team

Name Role Email Telephone
Gareth Chambers Test Engineer / Lead Consultant 07841573626
Leeanne Spiers Admin/Accounts 07515015730

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