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Old 12-19-2007, 07:25 PM   #1
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Building Envelope Best Practices


If you have a question about the building envelope, house wraps, etc, let me know. I am a marketing rep for one of the east coast's largest distributors and I am trained in building science and building envelopes.

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Old 12-19-2007, 08:44 PM   #2
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I've got a great question for you. I rarely see contractors tape the seams when they install Tyvek. If they do tape the seams, it is generally only the lapped seams where one roll ends and another begins. If you want the Tyvek to serve as an air barrier to keep those brutally cold winds from entering the wall system, wouldn't you have to tape all the EDGES of the Tyvek as well?

Tyvek has been compared to a "coat for your home". If the seams aren't taped, isn't that kind of like going around with your coat unzipped?

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Old 12-19-2007, 10:17 PM   #3
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I'm suddenly seeing a couple new buildings around here that appear to be using a sheathing that has a air barrier laminated on the outside of each sheet. The sheathing is green and after the sheathing is hung, it's taped, along the seams. What is this stuff, and what's the good word on it?
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Old 12-19-2007, 10:37 PM   #4
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Other than being competitors what are the major differences between Tyvek and Pactiv's RainDrop?
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Old 12-20-2007, 08:08 AM   #5
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Here's a couple of decent articles about different vapor barriers, and one on installation. Maybe Tyvek Will will come back chime in.

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Originally Posted by NateHanson View Post
I'm suddenly seeing a couple new buildings around here that appear to be using a sheathing that has a air barrier laminated on the outside of each sheet. The sheathing is green and after the sheathing is hung, it's taped, along the seams. What is this stuff, and what's the good word on it?
I "think" what you're seeing is the Zip wall system. Don't know anything about it...but looks interesting. The members at the Fine Home Building site are chatting about it, maybe you can get some info there. I'm not sure if the link will work with-out a profile with them...if not I could convert it to a PDF and post if anyone's interested.
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Old 12-20-2007, 05:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XSleeper View Post
I've got a great question for you. I rarely see contractors tape the seams when they install Tyvek. If they do tape the seams, it is generally only the lapped seams where one roll ends and another begins. If you want the Tyvek to serve as an air barrier to keep those brutally cold winds from entering the wall system, wouldn't you have to tape all the EDGES of the Tyvek as well?

Tyvek has been compared to a "coat for your home". If the seams aren't taped, isn't that kind of like going around with your coat unzipped?
All seams should be taped and is required in the warranty. Many installers do not tape in an attempt to save time and money. Behind vinyl siding water can be atomized and move up down and sideways getting between the untaped seams and wetting the sheathing. I rarely see anyone tape the Tyvek to the sheathing in areas like the top of the wall. Generally the bottom of the wall should be secured but there should be a pathway allowed for any water that gets behind the Tyvek to drain out. Not taping seams and terminations is like wearing a windbreaker w/ the zipper down.
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Old 12-20-2007, 05:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XSleeper View Post
I've got a great question for you. I rarely see contractors tape the seams when they install Tyvek. If they do tape the seams, it is generally only the lapped seams where one roll ends and another begins. If you want the Tyvek to serve as an air barrier to keep those brutally cold winds from entering the wall system, wouldn't you have to tape all the EDGES of the Tyvek as well?

Tyvek has been compared to a "coat for your home". If the seams aren't taped, isn't that kind of like going around with your coat unzipped?
All Tyvek seams should be taped and is required for a warranty. Many installers do not tape in an attempt to save time and money. I have not seen many jobs where the Tyvek is taped to the sheathing at the top of the wall. Probably not a bad idea. At the bottom of the wall there should be some provision for any water that finds it's way behind the Tyvek, to drain out, Skip taping or skip caulking work. In the case of some type of masive failure above, the water must be alowed to drain from behind the weather barrier. Not taping seams is definately like wearing a wind breaker w/ the zipper down
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Old 12-21-2007, 11:02 AM   #8
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Old 12-21-2007, 01:35 PM   #9
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Tyvek Will,

If you’re here to sell us on Tyvek house wrap….many code agencies now require some sort of vapor barrier on buildings and there are quite a few out there on the market. Why is yours any better?
Panthony,

I assume you simply misspoke when referring to Tyvek as a vapor barrier. All builders should know by now that Tyvek is not a vapor barrier since it is vapor permiable. I believe you meant to say "weather resistant barrier", "building paper" or "housewrap".
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Old 12-22-2007, 11:42 PM   #10
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Old 12-23-2007, 05:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyvek Will View Post
Behind vinyl siding water can be atomized and move up down and sideways getting between the untaped seams and wetting the sheathing.
Now I have to ask....do you have any idea of the statement here? Water can "atomize"? Just say to allow condensation to drain.
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Old 12-27-2007, 03:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NateHanson View Post
I'm suddenly seeing a couple new buildings around here that appear to be using a sheathing that has a air barrier laminated on the outside of each sheet. The sheathing is green and after the sheathing is hung, it's taped, along the seams. What is this stuff, and what's the good word on it?
It might be Perm-A-Barrier, its green and seems to work well but you have to spray it on and it comes in 50 gallon drums as a two part system

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