Home Calendar - Passive House Canada | Maison Passive Canada Master Classes ONLINE: Master Class Series – Building Enclosure Control Layers (4 Sessions) – 13 Apr 2023

ONLINE: Master Class Series – Building Enclosure Control Layers (4 Sessions) – 13 Apr 2023


Session 1: Thursday April 13, 2023 – 10am to 12pm (PT)
Session 2: Thursday April 27, 2023 – 10am to 12pm (PT)
Session 3: Thursday May 11, 2023 – 10am to 12pm (PT)
Session 4: Thursday May 25, 2023 – 10am to 12pm (PT)

If you are a designer or builder who wants to achieve a high-performing, durable Passive House building, you need to understand control layers. Control layers are materials and systems of materials that are specially designed, selected, and detailed to control water, vapour, and air. They are placed throughout the building, from the roof, walls, and floor to the below-grade enclosure assemblies, details, and interfaces. They consist of membranes and other materials typically described as air barriers, vapour barriers, and water-resistive barriers, or collectively as critical barriers.

The design, selection, and placement of control layers can be challenging. Given the highly insulated nature of passive house buildings, even small mistakes in water and air control can create problems. Simply adding insulation to traditional wall and roof assemblies is risky, so air and vapour control practices must be adjusted to consider the assembly layers and details. Therefore, to design and construct effective passive house buildings, designers and builders must understand the building science behind control layers.

This four-part seminar series will help designers and builders of large, multifamily passive house building enclosures—whether residential, commercial, or institutional—to better understand the building science behind water, vapour, and air control layers. The series focuses on wood, steel, and concrete buildings and construction types in all climate zones of Canada.

Session 1Introduction to Control Layers for Passive House Wall Assemblies will introduce the concept of building enclosure control layers and provide examples from passive house buildings of air barrier systems, vapour retarders/barriers, and wall/roof water management. The session will also cover placement of vapour control with different types and varying thicknesses of insulation and water control for walls, including rainscreens and water-resistive barrier materials. PHI Code

Session 2: Controlling Water and Vapour – From Rainscreens to Vapour Barriers will take a deeper dive into rainwater control and detailing as well covering vapour control for walls. PHI Code

Session 3: Control of Air – Air Barrier Systems and Material Selection will cover wall air control/air barrier systems and materials. PHI Code

Session 4: Controlling Water on Roofs and Below-Grade will focus on the special building enclosure control practices for roof and below-grade assemblies. PHI Code

Each two-hour session will include 90 minutes of live web-based instruction and demonstrations plus a 30-minute Q&A.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the challenges with building enclosure assembly design and detailing for passive house projects.
  • Describe and identify building enclosure control layers within highly insulated passive house roof, wall, floor, and below-grade assemblies and details.
  • Design and sketch appropriate building enclosure control layers within passive house building enclosure assemblies and details.
  • Specify appropriate building materials for different control functions suitable for the higher demands of passive house projects.

Recommended for

  • Passive House Designers and Consultants
  • Builders, architects, architectural technologist and engineers
  • Building officials and planners
  • Trades
  • Students
  • Anyone interested in the subject

Prerequisites / required background knowledge

No prerequisites are necessary, but a basic understanding of passive house principles, including Passive House Canada 120A, would be beneficial.

Learning resources provided

  • Digital copy of course slide.
  • Webinar recording for 20 days after each session has ended.

*Courses in this series are also offered individually. More information can be found on our course calendar here.

Course Instructor

The instructor for this course will be Graham Finch.


Course Fees

First 20 registrants
PHC Members – $600
Non-Members – $660

Regular price
PHC Members – $700
Non-Members – $770

Funding Opportunities

At Passive House Canada we are committed to supporting our community in a number of ways. As a potential course participant, you might qualify for government funding that could be applied to any of our courses and exams. Please consult the links here to find out more about funding available in the province you live in.

Professional development

Total number of learning hours: 8 (based on attendance of live event)

PHI Credit Points: 8 Credit Points (based on attendance of live event)
BC Housing (HPO): 6 CPD Informal (based on attendance of live event)
AIBC: 8 Core LUs (based on attendance of live event)
ALBNL: 8 Core Learning Hours (based on attendance of live event)
AANB: 8 Core Learning Hours (based on attendance of live event)
NSAA: 8 Core Learning Hours (based on attendance of live event)
AAA webinar credits: self-reported
APEG credits: self-reported
ARIDO credits: self-reported
OPPI credits: self-reported
EGBC credits: self-reported
OAA: self-reported