Air Barriers Save Energy, Says ABAA, Expanding Educational Campaign at Major Events to Promote

By: Air Barrier Association of America
WALPOLE, Mass. - Nov. 10, 2013 - PRLog -- WALPOLE, MA., November 11, 2013 – On average, 40% of a building’s energy is lost due to air infiltration, a loss that can be prevented by using air barriers. With this in mind, the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA), the group that promotes the use of properly installed air barriers for energy efficiency and building durability, has announced a multi-state educational campaign to expand the effective specification and installation of quality air barrier systems.

The sweep across the country reflects the ABAA’s increasing prominence in industry and among leading building teams, with growth in certified installers, ABAA-evaluated products, and knowledgeable specifiers and contractors who have earned AIA continuing education units (CEUs) from ABAA continuing education courses. ABAA has also reported growing adoption of its Quality Assurance Program (QAP), which ensures proper application of air barriers, an essential but hard-to-maintain building component.

The broad educational campaign schedule also underscores the ABAA’s commitment to meeting energy efficiency goals and carbon reduction targets, says Craig Wetmore, CSI, president of York Manufacturing in Sanford, Maine, and an ABAA committee chair. “ABAA is the recognized voice for air-barrier knowledge, and with a wider appreciation of air barrier benefits, we find more demand for ABAA educational offerings.” According to ABAA, the group’s campaign schedule includes:

-- An exhibit and informal presentations at the Greenbuild in Philadelphia, from November 20-22, Philadelphia, at their booth #2251.

According to Wetmore, air barriers are essential to green building, ensuring proper building enclosure performance and helping prevent air leakage.

The new version of the widely used green building standard, LEED v4, requires in its prerequisite Energy & Atmosphere section adherence to ASHRAE standard 90.1-2010. “And for three years, ASHRAE 90.1 has required a continuous air barrier design, installation of air barrier materials and their continuity around penetrations — as well as testing requirements for air barrier materials and assemblies,” says Roy Schauffele chair of ABAA’s board of directors and founder, Division 7 Solutions, Converse, Texas.

Support Through Partnership

With these changes, ABAA anticipates more demand for advice on air barriers to meet the energy standards and green building programs — a focus of upcoming events.

-- ABAA will conduct a full-day workshop and host a reception at the Buildings XII Conference in Clearwater, Florida (link), December 1-5, 2013.

With the growing need for education in mind, ABAA has planned a number of full-day workshops for this and next year, including this annual conference on Thermal Performance of the Exterior Envelopes of Whole Buildings, sponsored by BETEC, ASHRAE and organized by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

To be held at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach, Florida, the conference offers two concurrent tracks: Principles, devoted to building enclosure research; and Practices, focusing on practical applications and case studies.

-- Exhibit and outdoor product demonstrations at World of Concrete, January 20-24 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

With increased interest in the proper application of air barriers, ABAA has planned live product demos to showcase the importance of applicator training and certification.

Among the upcoming programs, the World of Concrete annual expo draws general contractors and a wide variety of specialty contractors and product/system installers from around the country. So it’s an ideal forum for presenting information on ABAA’s installer training courses, which are available for: Self-Adhered & Fluid Applied Air Barriers; Spray Polyurethane Foam; Mechanically Fastened Air Barriers; and Water-Resistive Barriers.

         “Installer training is an investment in the future and a tool for success,” says ABAA’s Wetmore. The ABAA training and certification programs provide a means to ensure applicators possess the necessary skills and knowledge to produce quality air barrier installations.” He adds that certification sets installers apart from the competition, and that some architects and specifiers recommend and specify certified installers only.

-- Exhibiting at NIBS Building Innovation, a conference to be held January 6-9, 2014, in Washington, D.C.

In addition, ABAA will exhibit at the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) Building Innovation Program, an annual look at the most pressing topics in building design for energy efficiency and high performance.

Expanding Education Offerings

With 25 approved speakers nationally, ABAA is often invited to speak at AIA chapters, AGC events and AWCI as well. The group has various educational programs to offer, including “Design Considerations for Air Barriers” and “Air Barrier Fundamentals and Design Considerations,” two very popular courses.

“ABAA offers this series of AIA accredited courses designed to offer continuing education to professionals who need introductory seminars and also experts in air barriers who need to know the latest materials and advanced details,” Wetmore explains.

         In addition to the educational seminars, ABAA will host its third annual ABAA Conference and Trade Show, to be held in Orlando, Florida, from March 25-27, 2014. During this conference, there will be a three-day comprehensive learning tracks and workshops offered for design professionals, general contractors, air barrier contractors, consultants, and testing labs. It represents an opportunity to earn multiple CEUs at presentations on a variety of topics.

         “The annual conference and trade show truly highlights our mission as an organization,” says Wetmore, “to work together with our membership, industry, and trade to be the recognized voice for air barrier knowledge.”


PRESS CONTACT: For more information, photographs and interviews, contact Chris Sullivan at 914.462.2096 or

About the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA)

The ABAA emerged in 2001 as building codes began to require the use of air barriers. Working with stakeholders including manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, architects, engineers, contractors, researchers, testing & audit agencies, consultants and building owners, ABAA has become the national voice of the air barrier industry in America. For more details, visit

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