What is an R value / Guides

R values and insulation performance
Efficient home design

Understanding thermal performance

...r and higher temperatures the performance decreases dramatically. Importantly, it is at these more extreme temperatures [i.e. farther away from interior tempera...

Off grid, passively heated and cooled house in the Gatineau Hills, Que
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Off grid and passively heated, this house in Low, Quebec is aiming for LEED certification

...ree heat. Further to that, the house is powered by solar panels, and heated by a woodstove and radiant floors warmed by a propane boiler. A double exterior wa...

Wood frame Triple-glazed, argon-filled windows in the Ecohome Demo House
Windows and doors

Choosing windows - which window frame? wood v aluminum v vinyl

...rable and sturdy windows, we are referring to products and construction that are more resistant to pressure and warping due to temperature changes, which ultima...

Ice dams on roofs & how to fix them
Roof assemblies - renovation

What causes ice dams and how to fix them

...rticularly at junctions where the roof and walls meet. This problem is most notable with low-sloped roofs and short overhangs. As heat is transferred through fr...

Air barriers are essential to a properly functioning wall system
Air and vapour barriers

What is an air barrier?

...re water vapor is carried into our walls by air leakage than is carried by vapor diffusion. That makes air barriers 100 times more important than vapour barrier...

Choosing a building envelope
Wall assemblies - new construction

Choosing a building envelope - starting with the perfect wall

...r control layer, or vapor barrier : Although commonly known as a 'vapour barrier' a better term to use would be a vapour retarder. A moisture control barrier ...

Roxul mineral wool batt insulation in LEED Homes
Insulation and soundproofing

Choosing the right insulation: the pros, cons and applications for walls, slabs & basements

...r barrier and air barrier. Blowing agents are 1430 times worse than carbon dioxide, exponentially worse than EPS. For ecological reasons rather than performan...

Energy modeling simulation of heat loss through thermal bridging
Efficient home design

What is a thermal bridge and why is it so important to break it?

...r an engineer to identify a thermal bridge in a home, run your hand along your walls on a really cold day and they will find you. This isn't only an issue of ...

How to choose Triple pane, high performance windows
Windows and doors

The best tips for buying windows

...rotected from the sun, which is a simple exercise in geometry in designing roof overhangs and the like. As a general rule, cold winters warrant triple-pane wind...

Pre-fabricated straw bale SIPS panels, an environmental choice
Wall assemblies - new construction

Modern straw bale SIPS construction: high performance, durable, affordable & interesting

...ant a more traditional exterior look. Interior walls are straight and true, and require only mudding as any gypsum board wall would. And now for the best part...

Better Basement Design on basement walls prevents mold and midlew
Healthy indoor air quality

Basement renovations: How to prevent mold when finishing basements

...rious structural problems or plan to excavate for other reasons, that can be an enormous extra cost for an interior renovation project. It is much more affordab...