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Energy Efficiency Taken to the Wall

air-barrier, envelope

Making sure a building’s envelope is not riddled with holes is an important step in achieving energy efficiency. Air leakage could represent as much as 40 percent of energy spend.

Developing an integrated system is paramount. Consultants recommend a continuous air-barrier system between the wall system and roofing. Often a break between the roof and walls lets cold air in.

However, as the holes in the building’s envelope are resolved care should be taken that the envelope doesn’t become so airtight as to create problems. One problem could be over-pressurization. When structures use mechanically fastened, single-ply roofs, such positive pressure within a building can cause the roof to billow up and, if the problem is persistent enough, cause failure of the assembly, usually where the roof ties to the wall.

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