House Wrap: Air Sealing and Protection From the Elements
Use house wrap when framing a home to block out moisture and unwanted air.
When you go out in bad weather, you wear a jacket to protect yourself from rain, wind and other elements. A home should be protected in the same fashion. Without a protective barrier, the home can get wet, which can lead to wood rot and mold growth.
Is there a better way to protect a home from these elements?
Using a house wrap during the framing stage of construction will prevent moisture from entering the home. This will protect the house from rotting and from developing mold or fungus. Additionally, air infiltration through the framed walls will be blocked.
The "best practice" for protecting your home from wind and water while allowing it to "breathe" is to install a layer of "house wrap" made of a thin layer of spun-bonded polyethylene.
Here's how to do it:
- Start at a corner, but make sure you have 2 to 3 feet of house wrap to overlap the corner. Wrap it around the corner and continue nailing or stapling as you move. Wrap the entire building, including door and window openings.
- Use button nails or minimum 1-inch staples to fasten the house wrap every 12 to 18 inches along the vertical studs.
- Make an inverted "y" cut, or "martini glass cut," over the window openings. Fold the flaps in through the opening of the two sides and the sill and fasten them inside.
Many builders do not install a drainage plane at all. The builders who do often install "building paper," a sheet of asphalt-impregnated felt paper, to protect the house from exterior water penetration. Unlike house wrap, however, building paper doesn't effectively reduce air infiltration because it has many seams, while house wrap is a continuous sheet with minimal overlaps.
House wrap produces a breathable, weather-resistant barrier that will reduce energy costs and prevent wind-driven rain from entering the walls of a home.
Spray Foam Improves on Insulation
Foam keeps heat in by sealing cracks and spaces in your house.
How to Build Airtight Insulated Cathedral Ceilings
Proper construction techniques can help ensure airtight, dry and energy-efficient cathedral ceilings.
Insulated Concrete Forms
Insulated concrete forms (ICFs) offer several advantages: energy efficiency, safety and soundproofing.
Insulating Beneath the Basement Slab
Keep heat in and keep moisture out with an insulation layer under your home.
Soy Spray Foam Insulation
Soy-based products include carpet backings, coatings and stains, roofing and adhesives; and now insulation.
Because cellulose insulation is produced using recycled waste materials, it's a good option for environmentally conscious consumers.
Installing Fiberglass Batt Insulation
Use these tips and techniques to ensure proper installation of fiberglass insulation.
Foam Sheathing on Exterior Walls
The best practice for increasing the R-value in exterior walls is to protect them with insulated foam sheathing.
Ladder Framing Allows Better Insulation
Increase space for more insulation by reducing the amount of wood needed.
SIPs: Structural Insulated Panels
Frames prove stronger and more energy efficient than conventional stud frames.
We're serving up the latest news, gorgeous style, crafty DIY projects, clever entertaining tips and more. Consider these your design digests.