insulation

New Homes: Efficiency Priorities

Focus on the Envelope Home owners and builders seldom give the building envelope the priority it deserves. The insulation, air barrier, windows, and doors are the most important features of a new home. These envelope features determine a home’s energy efficiency and comfort. They’re also permanent and may never change.  Homes with better thermal resistance and airtightness need smaller HVAC systems. …

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More on Moisture and Insulation

The Experimental Findings Building Science Corporation (BSC) published a recent report that spawned a Journal of Light Construction (JLC) article called “Moisture in Fat Walls”. Two of the three walls studied are double walls with R-values in excess of R-40. The setting for the buildings studied is Massachusetts.

Foundation Dampproofing, Waterproofing, and Protection for Insulation at Grade

Dampproofing and Waterproofing for Foundations For basements and crawl spaces, install dampproofing, waterproofing, capillary breaks,  insulation, and drains as soon as possible so that rain during construction doesn’t create moisture problems in the new home. Dampproofing is a sprayed or rolled-on vapor retarder that provides the minimal protection from water vapor needed for dry soils. …

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Consumer Energy Tax Credit Extended by Congress

Congress Extended Tax Credits for Energy Retrofits A $500 tax credit for residential energy-retrofit customers was preserved by the recent fiscal-cliff agreement. The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 passed by Congress on January 3, 2013, provides extensions of the  tax credit to cover material costs of energy-efficient upgrades to existing homes, but reduces the maximum …

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