Comparative Analysis of Overheating Risk for Typical Dwellings and Passivhaus in the UK

Jihoon Jang, Sukumar Natarajan, Joosang Lee, Seung Bok Leigh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (SciVal)


There is growing concern that airtight and well-insulated buildings designed to limit heat loss in temperate and cold climates could unintentionally elevate the risk of overheating in summers. Existing literature primarily uses dynamic simulation to investigate this problem due to the difficulty of obtaining large-scale in-performance data. To address this gap, we undertake a meta-analysis of large-scale indoor air temperature data for 195 UK dwellings, as a study of performance in a temperate climate. Of these, 113 are baseline (i.e., typical existing dwellings) and the rest designed to the high-performance Passivhaus standard. Using both Passivhaus and the well-known CIBSE TM59 overheating standards, this study found that there were few overheated cases for any building type. However, the average summer nighttime temperature of Passivhaus bedrooms was 1.6C higher than baseline, with 20 out of 31 measured bedrooms exceeding the overheating criterion, and the average overheating hours constituting approximately 19% of the total summertime observation period. These findings suggest that bedrooms in highly insulated dwellings may pose an overheating risk although whole-dwelling overheating risk is low.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3829
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research work was supported by “Human Resources Program in Energy Technology” of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), granted financial resource from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, Republic of Korea. (No. 20194010000070).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • climate change
  • global warming
  • overheating risk
  • Passivhaus
  • thermal comfort

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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