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Building Performance
Building Science
Ventilation IAQ

Zone Pressure Diagnostics: Precise Leak Detection and Measurement in Buildings - Self Study

Rick Karg • Last updated 03/2021

4.3/5 (view ratings)
658 students
1 module
1:26 hours
9 assignments

Course description

Zone Pressure Diagnostics (ZPD) is one of the most powerful tools available for building analysis.

The free calculation aid from Residential Energy Dynamics (RED) is the most accurate and easy to use ZPD tool available. This course addresses the ZPD basics to the advanced features. Learn about non-modifiable and modifiable zone analysis, the use of your digital manometer for ZPD testing, and the meaning of your results.

This course includes the latest ZPD methods and includes the most significant articles written about this building science technique. The two-part video presentation, narrated by the instructor, addresses all the ZPD principles and details, including the use of the RED ZPD tool.

Learning Objectives:
• List reasons for performing ZPD in the field, both modifiable and non-modifiable analysis
• List the tools needed to perform ZPD
• Explain how to conduct a modifiable ZPD test to an attic, attached garage, or basement
• Discuss the results of modifiable zone analysis, including flow at CFM50 and area of leakage in each pressure boundary
• Understand ZPD targets used by weatherization programs
• Describe how additional attic venting can increase the whole-house CFM50 value
• Calculate the effective area of attic venting using ZPD, not your tape measure
• Identify when the pressure and thermal boundaries in a house are aligned
• Know the disadvantages of non-modifiable zone analysis
• Determine when air sealing work has been effective
• Understand how to use ZPD for Quality Control Inspections

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Full course outline

Module 1 - Zone Pressure Diagnostics: Precise Leak Detection and Measurement in Buildings

  • User-Friendly Pressure Diagnostics. Jim Fitzgerald, Rob Nevitt, and Michael Blasnik. Home Energy magazine, September/October 1994. (.pdf)
  • Zone Pressure Diagnostics: A new protocol shows how to make a valuable diagnostic test even more useful. Dave Bohac. Home Energy magazine, May 2002.
  • Zone Pressure Diagnostics, Part 1 of 2 (37:08 minutes)
  • Zone Pressure Diagnostics, Part 2 of 2 (49:46 minutes)
  • The Benefits of Zone Pressure Diagnostics
  • An Investigation into Zone Pressure Diagnostic Protocols for Low Income Weatherization Crews. Report 208-1. December 2001. Energy Center of Wisconsin.
  • Final Quiz (10 questions)


Rick Karg

President, Residential Energy Dynamics

Rick spent ten years building houses, taught college economics, helped design one of the first energy modeling programs, managed the Maine Home Performance Program, and has been training utility staff, low-income weatherization personnel, and private energy auditors and contractors for over three decades. He has been a member of the ASHRAE 62.2 ventilation committee... Learn more


228 reviews

658 students have taken this course

by CHRIS KOKARAS 12/14/2020

I really thing everybody sould attend it.

by Andrew Toutant 07/23/2020


by Jacob Wolff 06/08/2020

Thank you. This class was great.

by Stephen Cannon 06/03/2020

this site is amazing, they have very detailed classes that are self paced and the material is very easy to understand.

by Harry Block 05/06/2020

It’s easy to learn on this site

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Frequently asked questions

How does this course work?

This is a free course. Enroll today and get access to all of the materials instantly. The lecture video and other materials are available any time.

How long do I have access to the materials?

For free courses there is no guarantee for how long the course materials will be available.

Is there a certificate of completion?

Certificates of completion are only provided to HeatSpring Membership subscribers. This course has not been approved by any credentialing organizations (NABCEP, AIA, USGBC etc) for Continuing Education Credits (CEUs). This course is for self education purposes only and completion does not indicate a level of professional expertise or credential.

Can I register multiple people?

Yes, this is a free course so you can share this page with other people from your group.

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