The Construction of a High Performance Home: Week 5

Posted by Tim Biebel on Mar 6, 2017 5:20:49 PM

High Performance Home Zip Wall

The completion of week five leaves us with a partially finished roof system and the garage concrete not yet poured. The roof trusses, which were dropped off Monday morning, had to be set by hand (mostly) because the crane could not be on site long enough thanks to the load limits on the roads. I’ve beat the load limit topic to death, so I don’t need to expand on that any more. The garage foundation for this high performance home in Vermont was supposed to be poured on Friday morning, but ironically the weather turned too cold after the warm spell we’ve experienced. I’ve beat the weather topic to death as well. The Caribbean seems like a nice place to visit right now.

The strategy with most builds is to get the roof on as quickly as possible, and then work from the top down to button everything up. This way, there will be dry work on rainy days. You may have noticed that the stairs to the basement are missing in the pictures accompanying this installment of our diary. That’s because we haven’t built them yet! The same goes for the completion of the exterior walls and the interior walls. Once the roof has been dried in (raintight), the crew will get to work on finishing the framing inside and out.

In future updates, I’ll be able to take specific pictures of energy details that we are implementing on this project and explain them, but we need a couple more weeks of framing before I can take pictures of completed details.

High Performance Home builder

Until then, I’ll briefly discuss the exterior wall sheathing as it relates to energy. We use a product called ZipWall that is sheathing that has a coating applied to it that creates an air barrier. When the joints are taped with the ZipTape, the entire exterior surface of the wall becomes an air barrier. Care must still be taken at the connection of the windows and doors, and any penetration through the wall (wires, plumbing, etc.).

Though we don’t fully rely on the Zip Sheathing to be the air barrier, it makes a big difference on the overall air tightness of this high performance home. You can read more about ZipWall on this website: Fine Homebuilding

Click here to read week 4 update.

Click here to read week 6 update.

Here are some production pictures from the last week:

 

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Tim Biebel

by Tim Biebel

Tim Biebel is Vice President of Prudent Living, a leading net zero and energy efficiency building company located in Windsor, VT.

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