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Coping with discomfort at home and its effect on the internal climate. The case of traditional Scottish buildings before and after a retrofit

Herrera, Daniel; Bennadji, Amar

Authors

Daniel Herrera

Amar Bennadji



Contributors

Luisa Brotas
Editor

Susan Roaf
Editor

Fergus Nicol
Editor

Abstract

This study investigates the relationship between users and internal climate in traditional buildings. Built upon principles of social practice theory, the results presented here compare and contrast occupants' daily practices of comfort with the physical characteristics of the indoor environment. Specifically, this study explores the effect of coping with discomfort on the internal moisture loads (difference in water vapour content in g/m3 between indoor and outdoor air). A cross-sectional study was designed to gather qualitative and quantitative data from households of traditionally constructed buildings before and after a thermal retrofit of the envelope. The results revealed that the 'meaning' of comfort has a crucial impact on how daily practices of comfort (such as heating or ventilation) are shaped. More importantly, the comparison between narratives and measurements showed that households where comfort was more difficult to achieve were those with higher moisture concentrations. The results of the study also showed that the adjusting mechanisms chosen by the users - that is, the way in which users coped with discomfort - and how long they lasted were heavily influenced by their perception of how easily comfort could be restored.

Citation

HERRERA, D. and BENNADJI, A. 2017. Coping with discomfort at home and its effect on the internal climate: the case of traditional Scottish buildings before and after a retrofit. In Brotas, L., Roaf, S. and Nicol, F. (eds.) Proceedings of the 33rd Passive low energy architecture international conference (PLEA 2017): design to thrive, 2-5 July 2017, Edinburgh, UK. Edinburgh: NCEUB [online], volume 1, pages 1108-1115. Available from: https://plea2017.net/wp-content/themes/plea2017/docs/PLEA2017_proceedings_volume_I.pdf

Conference Name 33rd Passive low energy architecture international conference (PLEA 2017)
Conference Location Edinburgh, UK
Start Date Jul 2, 2017
End Date Jul 5, 2017
Acceptance Date Jul 2, 2017
Online Publication Date Jul 2, 2017
Publication Date Jul 5, 2017
Deposit Date Oct 6, 2017
Publicly Available Date Oct 6, 2017
Publisher NCEUB Network for Comfort and Energy Use in Buildings
Volume 1
Pages 1108-1115
Keywords Traditional buildings; Retrofit; Discomfort; Internal climate; Practice theory
Public URL http://hdl.handle.net/10059/2533
Publisher URL https://plea2017.net/wp-content/themes/plea2017/docs/PLEA2017_proceedings_volume_I.pdf

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