The release of the 2016 NCC saw a small sentence inserted that can have a large impact on your energy ratings:
126.96.36.199(e), for compensating for a loss of ceiling insulation, other than where the house energy rating software used can automatically compensate for a loss of ceiling insulation; and
When ceiling insulation is removed to allow clearance for downlights or exhaust fans, we now need to add them into our star rating calculations.
Previously this was done with our BCA L & P Form, so that downlights did not affect the star rating.
Including the downlights in the star rating can cause the star rating to drop by as much as half a star. Unfortunately there is no way around this in a star rating.
However, Verification Using a Reference Building (VURB) Assessments are not affected by this new requirement. Therefore if you have a project with a lot of downlights or you would like to stay with the old system of calculating downlights after the assessment, then requesting a Verification Building Method rather than a star rating would be advisable.
In our star rating certificates you will now see the following box to indicate the downlights that have been included in the star rating and there is no need to calculate downlight penetrations separately :
If you have any question about his please feel free to contact me.
Ph: 9583 4333
Helpful BAL Links:
See if your project is in a Bushfire Prone area and requires a BAL:
BUSHFIRE PRONE MAP
See an estimate of the likely construction costs to comply with the BAL report:
BAL Compliance Costs
And here is the link to the Residential Flow chart showing where and when you need a BAL assessment:
Bushfire Smart – Residential Flow Chart