In response to the increasing rates of infection resulting from variants of concern and a slower than planned vaccine roll-out, AJEC has modified our COVID-19 protocol for testing houses.
Effective immediately, all houses must be completely vacant during the blower door test . This includes trades, handymen, managers or any others involved with the house. What this also means for the site is that all units must be properly air-sealed prior to testing. As production ramps up this summer, this may become increasingly challenging. AJEC has always been committed to the highest level of customer service and will continue to work with our Builder partners towards a seamless process.
Our past COVID Guidelines have requested that units be empty during the evaluation process. We have gone beyond “a request” with our new policy for the following reasons:
Units are de-pressurized to 50 Pa (the equivalent of a 35 km/h wind on the exterior of the envelope, during the test), meaning we are sucking air out of every room in the entire house.
Virus-laden aerosols in any room may pass through the blower door and past the technician performing the test.
The risk of viral contact greatly increases if an infected person is anywhere in the house during testing.
We feel that current social distancing guidelines do not address the nature of the testing process.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, AJEC has incorporated a compliance / tracking system into the file submissions app which populates our database. This provides us with the tools for a real-time response should one of our team be infected as well as accurate records should the builder have an outbreak and require contact tracing data.
Evaluators will still troubleshoot during testing and if additional air-sealing is required in order to pass a test, site staff will be given appropriate guidance either interactively through Facetime etc., or through pictures to your mobile device. If the additional air-sealing can be completed within one hour, the evaluator may retest on the same day. If that is not possible, a test will have to be rescheduled after the deficiencies have been completed. *
The Health and Safety compliance of our work force will guarantee that low-rise construction will continue to remain an essential service.
April 6, 2020 Update
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, A&J Energy Consultants has changed our office operations team to work remotely for the time being.
In discussion with our evaluators, all are in agreement that the testing process presents minimal risk in terms of exposure to the COVID-19 virus. However, as added precautions, please note that A&J Energy Consultants will be adopting new safety guidelines in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.