Baukraft Engineering PLLC provides engineering consultancy for energy-efficient and healthy homes. Services range from basic engineering for HVAC systems up through Passive House Certification for extreme energy efficiency.
The name "Baukraft" is based on the German words for building, "bau," and energy or power, "kraft."
- Minimized energy demand
- Properly-sized HVAC equipment
- Proper ventilation
Engineering services include:
- Minimizing Energy Demand: It's not a matter of just using energy-efficient equipment - the building should require a little energy as possible in the first place. Insulation, windows, air tightness, and thermal bridging are all examined in detail for their role in the overall energy use of the building.
- Heating & Cooling System Design: Once energy demand has been minimized through passive measures, a properly sized heating and cooling system is needed to provide the remaining conditioning. Evaluation of the loads, building type and layout, and occupant preferences are all considered before recommending a system.
- Ventilation System Design: Supply of fresh air, exhaust of stale/polluted air. Controlled, deliberate, and efficient. Systems typically include a heat/enthalpy (heat + humidity) recovery ventilation unit and a properly designed distribution system which provides fresh air where it's needed most and remove stale air and moisture at the source.
- Design for Resilience: Buildings shouldn't require 24/7 conditioning just to stay livable. This typically follows from doing a proper job of managing heat losses and gains with insulation, windows and air tightness, but further provisions must be made to allow for natural ventilation.
- Durability: Water and vapor management for long-term performance. Properly detailed air- and vapor-control layers in conjunction with the thermal envelope can be provided, or coordinated with the architect's drawings.
- Aesthetics: A building should fit with its surroundings, its occupants, and its function. This one's mostly up to you (or your architect) but the envelope and mechanical systems are designed with aesthetics in mind, not simply dropped into place.
Passive House Consulting
When all of the above are combined, an incredibly efficient building can result. Enter Passive House.
Formalized in Germany in the late 90s but based on American prototypes from the 70s, Passive House is one of the toughest energy efficiency standard for buildings in the world. Predictable and verifiable targets are specified for heating and cooling energy demand, air-tightness, and overall energy use.
As a Certified Passive House Consultant (CPHC-US), design guidance and submission for certification can be provided in conjunction with the above services.
More info on Passive House can be found at:
Passive Passion, a 20-minute documentary about Passive House's start in the US including interviews with one of the co-founders of Passive House and numerous designers using the system today is available for sale and also with clips in an essay by the creator. The movie can also been streamed online on the website of Four Seven Five High Performance Building Supply.
New York City Special Inspections
Baukraft Engineering is also a registered Special Inspection Agency (SIA) in New York City, for the following inspections (all Class 3):
- Exterior Insulation Finish Systems (EIFS) (BC 1704.12)
- Mechanical Systems (BC 1704.15)
- Heating Systems (BC 1704.23)
- Chimneys (BC 1704.24)