A field study on occupants’ ventilation behaviour through balcony doors in university students’ apartments during transitional seasons in Beijing

Occupant behaviour has an important role in both the environmental performance and energy performance of buildings, which has been thoroughly demonstrated in the past several decades. Based on a review work, some research gaps have been identified in the area of occupants’ ventilation behaviour and to answer those gaps a field study was carried out in a student dormitory building in Beijing, China, over the period of one transitional season in 2015. The study monitored students’ ventilation behaviour dynamically with concurrent measurement of relevant influential factors that have been identified in existing studies carried out in conventional buildings. The analysis carried out in the study aimed to demonstrate the influence of those previously-identified factors in the case study building. The factors examined in the study included outdoor air temperature, indoor air temperature, occupant presence, and certain aspects relating to personal preferences. From the analysis, it was found that all these factors can influence students’ ventilation behaviour in dormitories. However, the influence of occupant presence seems to be different from the findings in conventional buildings which focused mainly on the use of external windows, and not balcony doors, which are included in this study.