Dwelling performance and adaptive summer comfort in low-income Australian households

Moore, T, Ridley, I, Strengers, Y, Maller, C and Horne, R 2016, 'Dwelling performance and adaptive summer comfort in low-income Australian households', Building Research and Information, vol. 45, no. 4, pp. 443-456.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Dwelling performance and adaptive summer comfort in low-income Australian households
Author(s) Moore, T
Ridley, I
Strengers, Y
Maller, C
Horne, R
Year 2016
Journal name Building Research and Information
Volume number 45
Issue number 4
Start page 443
End page 456
Total pages 14
Publisher Routledge
Abstract Increasing reliance on air-conditioning to improve summertime comfort in dwellings results in higher energy bills, peak electricity demand and environmental issues. In pursuit of social equity, society needs to develop ways of improving cooling that are less reliant on air-conditioning. Designing homes to emphasize adaptive thermal comfort can reduce this reliance, particularly when combined with improved dwelling thermal performance. A multi-method evaluation of 10 low-income dwellings in the state of Victoria in Australia is presented, including low-energy and 'standard-performance' houses. The combination of performance monitoring and householder interviews reveals new insights for achieving summertime comfort. The low-energy houses without air-conditioning were both measured and perceived as more comfortable than the 'standard-performance' houses with air-conditioning. The low-energy households achieved improved personal thermal comfort through a combination of improved fabric performance augmented with adaptive comfort activities (e.g., opening/closing windows). This outcome reduces reliance on air-conditioning, reduces living costs and energy consumption, and improves environmental outcomes. There is a need to integrate lessons from adaptive thermal comfort theory and strategies into minimum building performance requirements and standards, as well as wider design strategies. It is evident that adaptive comfort has a role to play in a transition to a low-carbon housing future.
Subject Built Environment and Design not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) adaptation
adaptive comfort
fuel poverty
low-energy buildings
occupant satisfaction
thermal comfort
DOI - identifier 10.1080/09613218.2016.1139906
Copyright notice © 2016 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
ISSN 1466-4321
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 18 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 2 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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