Question-and-Answer Resource for the Building Energy Modeling Community
Get started with the Help page
Ask Your Question

How should I model stairs in my building?

asked 2021-05-17 10:16:08 -0500

charlottenauss's avatar

updated 2021-05-17 14:32:27 -0500

I am modeling a mid-rise MURB in SketchUp and OpenStudio and there are a lot of stairwells. Do I have to model each step, or can I just apply a stairwell space type and an internal load to represent the material used for the stairs?

edit retag flag offensive close merge delete

1 Answer

Sort by ยป oldest newest most voted

answered 2021-05-18 09:11:42 -0500

obuchely's avatar

What is the purposed of modeling that you are doing and what is the effect in your results of modeling each stairwells step?

If you are calculating thermal loads or energy consumption my advice is to simplify the stairs. It is important to put the electric, lighting, people loads and weather it is conditioned or not etc.

"everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler"

edit flag offensive delete link more


I would go with the "apply a stairwell space type and an internal load to represent the material used for the stairs" approach.

If there is a way to input the stair mass in the definition of the internal load for each stairwell, you could calculate that using the geometry of the stairs from sketchup or the plans you are using, doing a volume takeoff and then multiplying by the density of the stair material.

sashadf1's avatar sashadf1  ( 2021-05-21 04:56:38 -0500 )edit

Your Answer

Please start posting anonymously - your entry will be published after you log in or create a new account.

Add Answer

Training Workshops


Question Tools

1 follower


Asked: 2021-05-17 10:16:08 -0500

Seen: 195 times

Last updated: May 18 '21