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Old 06-28-2012, 03:18 PM   #1
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proper place for vapor barrier


i recently bought a house that has vinyl siding over celotex fiberboard.
there was a little mold issue and i took one of the front walls off down to the studs. i am preparing to put it back together and i was wondering if i shoudl insulate with batts then plastic and sheetrock, or if i should put a barrier between the fiberboard and insulation?
thanks,

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Old 06-28-2012, 03:30 PM   #2
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proper place for vapor barrier


Depends where you live...

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Old 06-28-2012, 03:35 PM   #3
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proper place for vapor barrier


The traditional method of layering the building envelope used here in BC (Canada) is siding, then an air gap created by strips of plywood (this became code more recently), building wrap (older homes use tar paper, newer ones use Tyvec or similar), then construction grade plywood sheathing, then the studs, then the glass fibre insulation in the cavity, then a vapour barrier on the inside of the studs, then the drywall. Mostly we are trying to keep moisture and cold air outside from getting in. However in some parts of the world there are different approaches if moisture and/or cold on the outside is not an issue and where perhaps the house needs to "breathe" more from the inside. This is where knowing your location will help give the most appropriate advice.

Note also there are more modern/energy efficient ways of creating the building envelope using products such as spray foam insulation, but I am advising based on the more conventional method and for my location.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:41 PM   #4
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proper place for vapor barrier


I'm in Northern New Jersey.
I just bought the house a month ago and i am still in the discovery phase...
There is definitely some kind of moisture/ventilation issue. the attic doesnt have the proper ventilation and we are in the process of addressing that.
i want to make sure there is no moisture in the walls which would allow mold to grow.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:52 PM   #5
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proper place for vapor barrier


If your climate is temperate, the conventional view is that the vapour barrier goes on the warm side of the insulation. This is to prevent moisture from the atmosphere in the house from percolating through the insulation and condensing on the cold side. This would reduce the efficacy of the insulant, and also give rise to potential rot problems.
But, as the previous two posters stated - it depends - there seem to be locations where this would not be adviseable. Be interesting to see what take others have on this.

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Old 06-28-2012, 03:56 PM   #6
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proper place for vapor barrier


Quote:
Originally Posted by caseymcdougall View Post
I'm in Northern New Jersey.
I just bought the house a month ago and i am still in the discovery phase...
There is definitely some kind of moisture/ventilation issue. the attic doesnt have the proper ventilation and we are in the process of addressing that.
i want to make sure there is no moisture in the walls which would allow mold to grow.
Depending on the age of the home & method of construction it may or may not have poly vapour barrier on the inside behind the drywall (assuming your methods are similar to ours) ... however even if it does it is not uncommon for lazy contractors or home owners without all the knowledge to create issues when installing new light fixtures, redoing a shower, running new duct work, etc etc ... many places and ways in which they can break that air / water tight seal. A few obvious places to check are in the bathroom and kitchen, around windows and doors (both on inside and outside), around the foundation, and under the edge of carpets to see if there are any apparent signs of damp/rot/mould/nastyness. There is a huge industry based around damp/mould remediation so it's not something that can simply be answered here. Adequate ventilation is as important as actual waterproofing as the house needs to be able to breathe to some extent as well as keep the weather out. Good insulation is also key so the house does not either over heat in summer or chill in winter.

Any way could go on for days about this topic
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:15 PM   #7
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proper place for vapor barrier


the home was built in 1967 which in the US i thought would still be of decent quality.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:57 PM   #8
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proper place for vapor barrier


Vapor barrier goes on the warm side or more specifically the "conditioned" side. It actually turns out it's easier to do it this way too, especially for the attic. Staple it from below, put drywall up against it. Insulation goes in stud cavities. Same idea with walls.
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Old 07-05-2012, 12:43 AM   #9
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proper place for vapor barrier


Is there a housewrap?

You don't want/need poly; http://www.ecohomemagazine.com/energ...rfriendly=true

Find your Zone--- nearest cities below the map;http://www.ecohomemagazine.com/energ...rfriendly=true

Find your Zone, vinyl is "vented cladding"; http://www.buildingscience.com/docum...commendations/

Gary

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