After undertaking our first ever non-domestic EPC, a pub in Devon, using the basic iSBEM EPC software, both of us soon transitioned to Design Builder. This software is way more advanced and allows for three dimensional building modelling and more advanced thermal modelling calculations. After six years of using Design Builder, I am making the transition to IES software. This is a step on again and should allow further integration with other building services designers, especially for Part L2A SBEM calculations.
The downside to changing EPC software, is need to learn a completely different way of modelling buildings, more training and worst of all, more exams! I’m pleased to say I’m fast getting to grips with the software and have passed both exams. I’ll be using IES for all my non-domestic Energy Performance Certificates and SBEM calculations from now on, as well as the more advanced features such as daylight calculations and thermal modelling.
Next in line is to take the Dynamic Simulation Modelling (DSM) exam and then look to finalise a Level 5 EPC qualification. Most buildings come under the remit of L3 or L4 for EPCs but those with advanced ventilation strategies can be classed as a Level 5 EPC. All buildings can be modelled using DSM to give more accurate results compared to SBEM (Simplified Building Energy Model) and having the option for new buildings that need to comply with L2A of the Building Regulations will be very useful and advantageous to our clients. That first day of the simplistic, free EPC software is long gone!