Ted Cushman of our sister sister site, Journal of Light Construction, breaks down how you can test for air leakage for a full home using a duct blaster. Cushman speaks with Airtight Services’ Matt Bowers on the process he takes to certify homes to meet Energy Star standards and as a certified Passive House consultant.
On the phone with JLC, Bowers described the air barrier and superinsulation strategy for his 2,800-square-foot house. “It’s a double-stud-wall assembly,” Bowers explained (for a more detailed look, see Bowers' blog posts, "Wall Assembly 1" and "Wall Assemby 2"). “The interior 2x4 stud wall is load-bearing, and that wall frame is sheathed with the Zip System. Then we have 8 inches of cellulose, and another 2x4 insulated wall over that. So the overall thickness of the insulated wall is 16 inches, and the air barrier in that double wall assembly is the Zip sheathing on the exterior side of the interior load-bearing wall.” The exterior 2x4 wall’s drainage plane is ProClima Solitex Mento membrane, which allows the dense-pack-cellulose insulation in the wall to dry readily to the exterior. Meanwhile, the airtight Zip sheathing is located well toward the conditioned interior of the house, largely eliminating any risk of vapor condensation on the Zip face in winter.
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