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Evaluation of a technical survey and the renovation needs of old rural wooden houses in Estonia
Wooden detached houses represent the majority of buildings in rural areas in Estonia. The design service life of these rural wooden building is nearing its end. Before starting major renovation of these houses, a comprehensive survey of the buildings is required in order to determine all the visible and hidden damage of constructions. A renovation plan may be composed after the houses’ technical condition has been examined completely. This paper provides a description of the issues that need to be reported in a technical survey of an old log house. The relevant survey method was tested on 50 houses in Estonia. Besides describing survey components and methods, detailed information is given about building envelope elements and possible variations. All detected damage is described and illustrated with drawings and photographs. Every envelope component of a house should be checked for possible damage during an inspection. There are hidden components, especially below the floor where opening the construction or using a flexible camera is needed for an inspection. Most often, rot damage was found in foundation wall and log wall joints, the main reasons for it being broken or missing rain protection or waterproofing for the edge of the foundation. Often damage was identified in crawl spaces (floor beams) and near water leaks in the roof.
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Üllar Alev is Phd student in Chair of Building Physics and Energy Efficiency in Tallinn University of Technology. Alev’s main scientific interest is old detached houses, preferably of log construction. Wider research areas are hygrothermal behaviour of buildings structures; renovation of buildings; indoor climate of residential buildings; building energy consumption and healthy building design.
Targo Kalamees is professor of Building Physics and Head of Chair of Building Physics and Energy Efficiency in Tallinn University of Technology. Kalamees’ research areas are Hygrothermal behaviour of buildings structures; Boundary conditions for hygrothermal simulations and experiments; Renovation of Buildings; Indoor climate and indoor air quality of residential-, office-, and heritage buildings; Building energy consumption and healthy building design; Zero-, nearly Zero-, and Low Energy Building. He has participated in many scientific research and international projects, including H2020, IEA (Annex 41, 55, 61), CIB, Interreg, Tempus, Ersmus+, IEE programme projects.