Blower Door Testing 101

Building enveloped that perform poorly reduce energy efficiency, increase ROI times, and increase carbon footprints and utility bills for building owners. A blower door test can help to establish the airtightness of small to medium buildings, measure the flow of air between different areas in a building and test the airtightness of ductwork.

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Understanding R-value and U-value

Knowing what R-value and U-values mean is key to following energy issues and to selecting products that best suit the climate zone you are building in. R-value is essentially a product’s resistance to heat flow. Adversely, U-value measures the rate of heat transfer. This means that products with a lower U-value will be more energy efficient. It is tempting to think that these two values are direct opposites of each other, but there are some important differences to note.

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9-Foot Trims Increased Popularity

The trend toward more 9-foot ceilings in both single-family and multifamily housing starts is really gaining traction. Surveys shows increased production output in 2011 and 2012 of 9-foot and longer trims with no end in sight to this trend. Read on for more details…

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Plenum Truss: Get Your Ducting into a Conditioned Space

Placing notoriously leaky HVAC ductwork into an unconditioned space will not make for an energy efficient heating or cooling system.There are a few options which locate the ductwork within the thermal enclosure of the home. Options include moving the ceiling plane to the underside of the roof with an unvented attic or placing the ductwork in a conditioned basement. A third option is the installation of plenum trusses which allow for a compact ducting system to be placed in a conditioned bulkhead.

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Stronger Walls in One Easy Step

Increased incidence of strong weather systems and the tragedies that follow high wind events have encouraged engineers and designers to rethink the way we build to improve wall strength. Stronger walls will keep home occupants safer during weather events and will increase the lifespan of the home. One of the problems is that the roof, wall and flooring systems are installed as separate entities. Connecting the OSB wall sheathing and the flooring system can create a continuous load path which can improve wall strength by up to 38%.

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Prevent Buckling with Proper Spacing

The APA (the Engineered Woo Association) recommends that construction professionals leave a 1/8-inch gap between each panel edge and end joint. As ambient moisture changes, your OSB or plywood panels will expand and contract. When you butt the panels together tightly, there is no room for expansion and this can cause buckling in the panels. …

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