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Passive House Certification: A Guide | VIA architecture

Passive House Certification: A Guide | VIA architecture

The Passive House Institute (Germany) has published a thorough guide to Passive House Certification. It covers the benefits of certification, the process, the criteria, what documents need to be submitted and links to download example documents for reference. (Note: you need to log in to the Passipedia website to download the example documents)

The main benefit of certification is rigorous quality assurance. We expect things we invest in to have a thorough quality assurance process in place to make sure we get what we pay for and it is safe. Would you buy a car with no quality assurance? Of course not, it’s simply not possible. And yet we accept that the design and construction of our buildings do not have the same rigour of quality assurance in place.

During the certification process of a Passive House, the detailed design is carefully and comprehensively examined. On-site testing of the integrity of the thermal envelope is carried out. Supporting documents from the construction, such as the airtightness test, complete the quality control. And then a certificate is only issued if the exact defined criteria are met.

The Passive House Builder Certifier must be independent of the project and they must be an accredited by the Passive House Institute in Germany. This is different to a certified Passive House Designer or Consultant, such as me.

For NZ projects, I work with Jason Quinn of Sustainable Engineering. Jason is the only accredited Passive House Building Certifier in NZ at present. And he’s great to work with. Other certifiers around the world can be found here and there are no geographic restrictions on where they can certify Passive House projects. There are obvious benefits to working with someone local who is familiar with the NZ climate and construction methods, though.

You can download a copy of the guide by clicking on the image below.

Want to read more about Passive House Certification? Try this blog post: I want a Passivhaus; why bother with certification?

If you’re planning to build, have you checked out the resource page for other useful downloads?