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Old 02-20-2019, 07:28 PM   #1
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2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Hello everyone,
Buying a house in Northern Wisconsin that I would call my second house for the next 5 or 6 years before I retire there. In the meantime I am starting to remodel it while I don't live there full time. The interior walls are all paneling and am going to sheetrock them so will have the studs down to the insulation. Is it really worth it to fir out the 2x4 studs so they are basically 2x6 and put in the R rated 2x6 insulation or not? Plus then I would have to also put my plastic thermal barrier up as well. I am also tearing off the outside siding and putting Tyvek up before the different siding goes on. Usually the most heat is lost thru the ceiling and I am going to blow in more insulation in the attic to take care of that. I am also putting new windows in as well. Just wondering if it is even cost effective to do since it requires a fair amount of work--not only doing the fir out process but then you have to move electric boxes out, etc.


thanks everyone.


Jeff
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Old 02-20-2019, 07:31 PM   #2
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


I would keep 2x4 and spray foam if funds exist. What city you moving to?

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Old 02-20-2019, 07:36 PM   #3
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Park Falls---I see you are in Wisconsin, where are you?


Thanks, I was thinking about the spray foam as well. It's a small house--not much square footage facing the outside.
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Old 02-20-2019, 08:06 PM   #4
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Waterford. You are way north if me in snowmobiling county. Inlaws have a place east of you in Lakewood. Whatever you do remember you need to bring fresh air in. Someone on here will know much more than me about insulating and 2x6 construction. Good luck

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Old 02-20-2019, 08:18 PM   #5
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Typically when you take it down to the studs you are required to build it back up meeting all new codes. Zone 6 could require R-21 walls. I say could as each municipality can set their own requirements and select what ever code guidance they desire. That guidance (IECC) is updated every 3 years with some still using 2009 while others have upgraded to 2012, 2015, 0r 2018. Difficult to keep up with the changes. For you, you need to talk to your local building department to see which version they are following.

I would assume they will also want to see all electric in renovated upgraded to new code levels.

You mentioned new siding and that opens up the option of adding a couple of inches of rigid foam on the outside. That allows the 2x4's and electrical boxes to remain as is along with window baseboard trim. Window and door trim might change with new units.

Big project.

Bud

I think you are actually in Zone 7
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Old 02-20-2019, 08:45 PM   #6
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


If you want added insulation and are already tearing off the exterior, I would do as Bud said above and put rigid foam on the outside. That will get you more r-value than <2 of batt insulation.

If your insulation really needs replacing, you go with rock wool replacement in 2x4 space and rigid on the outside.

The rigid would definitely be less work than furring and moving boxes. May have to frame a few windows out or come up with something to bring the frames out.
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Old 02-21-2019, 01:21 AM   #7
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Foam on the outside is definitely an option, but if you're doing the labor yourself you might want to consider the Bonfiglioli approach. It's basically an inch thick strip of foam on each stud with a piece of 1x3 strapping over that to fur out each stud. This breaks the thermal transfer of the stud and gives you the 2x6 sized cavity to insulate.
I guess it comes down to which side of the wall you'll have the most access and want to work on.
Here's more on the Bonfig wall: https://www.finehomebuilding.com/201...thermal-bridge
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Old 02-21-2019, 08:43 AM   #8
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Exterior insulation if you are going with 2x4s.
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Old 02-21-2019, 09:02 AM   #9
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


There are box extenders for outlets than might be hard to move.
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Electric...E1-2/202708650
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:16 AM   #10
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Actually, I plan on moving electrical around anyway so not as worried about boxes. They come off pretty easy.
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:21 AM   #11
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


It would be a shame to open all the walls up and not add to the 2x4 thickness for insulation. I don't think it matters inside or out, it's more about which cost less and what you prefer to do. I like this idea of 1" foam spacer and 1x2 on the inside.
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:25 AM   #12
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


ok, so I appreciate all of the responses and thinking this thru a little more now. So, let's say that I go with the outside wall and rigid foam. I have fascia, gutters, and the soffit on the house that is non maintenance so I am keeping that. If I put the rigid foam on, that would cover up an inch (or however thick it is) of the soffit--then later on if I need to remove the soffit, wouldn't that make it that much more difficult to remove?


Plus, if I am going with different windows, those are usually for 2x6 walls and that would mean that I would be better off going with building the walls out from the inside right?


Plus, when you put rigid foam on the outside, how do you nail siding to that? You have to go thru the rigid foam into the stud when attaching?


Just wondering if I am thinking this thru correctly?


Appreciate all the advice. This honestly isn't that much work--sheetrock goes up fast once things are ready for that.
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:30 AM   #13
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


If your fascia is right against the house, that might be more trouble that it's worth.


Wood sash windows??
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:39 AM   #14
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Well, the soffit is right against the house and would be because that is how it is done right? Maybe I don't have the terms correct---fascia is the part that is under the gutters correct? Soffit is the part that is under the eave correct?


In terms of the windows, have not purchased them yet. Do you have any advice on windows? Vinyl? Wood?
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:44 AM   #15
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Re: 2x4 walls--should I go to 2x6


Here is a picture of the house as it currently stands. I believe it has Masonite siding and want to change it anyway.
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