BC Reference Procedure


For using THERM to Determine Window Performance Values for use with the Passive House Planning Package

Canadian window manufacturers are now aware that federal and provincial governments intend to use a combination of incentives and regulations to dramatically improve the energy performance of windows to less than 1.0 W/(m²-K) by 2030. These actions flow from the December 2016 Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change[1], Canada’s plan to meet greenhouse gas emissions targets, grow the economy, and build resilience to a changing climate.

Manufacturers looking to develop products with U-factors of less than 1.0 W/(m²-K) may wish to consider the market opportunity presented by the growing Canadian market demand for affordable Passive House windows.

The methodology presented in this document was developed jointly by RDH Building Science Inc. and Peel Passive House Consulting Ltd. It was created specifically to clarify the differences between North American and Passive House window thermal energy performance standards, and to provide a way for North American window manufacturers and energy simulation practitioners to accurately determine the energy performance parameters required to qualify them for use in Passive House buildings designed to the International Passive House Standard (IPHS). It shows how the industry-standard and publicly available LBL THERM software, together with a Microsoft Excel worksheet, can be used to accomplish this in a manner recognized by the Passive House Institute.

This methodology enables window manufacturers to report the performance of their existing products in Passive House terms, and to design next-generation windows for the growing Canadian and North American Passive House building market.

The contributors to this guide aspire to foster a new dialog between the fenestration sector, which has a remarkable capacity for product innovation in greater comfort and better energy performance, and the high-performance construction sector, which is creating a fast-growing global market for very high-performance triple-paned windows with highly insulated frames.

A Reference Procedure

This document is titled “Reference Procedure” because it is the first methodology using LBL THERM software to be recognized by the Passive House Institute for use in certifying Passive Houses to the International Passive House Standard. The use of a uniform reference procedure is intended to allow PHPP window performance values using this methodology to be trusted and compared.

Acknowledgements

The contributors wish to acknowledge REHAU for permission to use the 4700 series window profiles for the vinyl window example in this document, and Pazen Fenster + Technik GmbH for the “ENERsign plus” wood window example.

This project was produced with financial support from the BC Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund, administered through the Fenestration Association of BC. Established in 2007, the ICE Fund is designed to support the province’s energy, economic, environmental and greenhouse gas reduction priorities and advance BC’s clean energy sector.

Download PHPP-THERM Reference Procedure (V1) (PDF file)

Download PHPP-THERM Window Frame & Spacer Calculator V1 (Excel Spreadsheet)

Download PHPP-THERM Reporting Template V1 (Word Document)