Ecoseal Application for Lifelong Eco-Impact
Growing up, our only heat source at home was a wood stove. For a number of years my bedroom happened to be the farthest from that stove, and some winter nights were pretty chilly. I quickly learned that the best way to stay warm was to wrap myself in a cocoon of thick blankets, with all the edges snugly tucked under my body so that no cold air could reach me. If I missed even a tiny corner, I definitely felt it! That experience taught me the value of air sealing on a small scale, and illustrates why air sealing our buildings is also important.
Air sealing & controlled ventilation are probably the biggest performance improvements one can make in a building, and they affect all kinds of things: energy use, comfort, occupant health, and durability of the structure.
- Air leaks typically account for anywhere from 25% to 50% of heating & cooling use in a building
- Air leaks are one of the major paths for outside noise to enter a home
- Air leaks cause drafts and hot or cold spots in a home
- Air leaks bring in pollen, dust, and anything else that happens to be in the air
- Air carries a great deal of moisture with it, and when warm moist air meets a cold surface, that moisture condenses into liquid water. Liquid water in your building assembly eventually leads to mold and rot that can remain undetected for many years. Not only can air leaks cause mold, but due to their very nature air leaks can also pull mold spores into your home
- The other part of air sealing is having controlled ventilation to the building through an ERV (Energy Recovery Ventilator). It brings in fresh air through a filter & exhausts stale air from the home while recovering much of the energy in the air during the process.
It’s not often that making one improvement in construction can affect so many things so dramatically, but air sealing is one of them. THAT is why I’m so excited. For a fairly low upfront cost, air sealing will save our clients a great deal on energy costs for decades to come (helping the environment at the same time), as well as making their homes much more comfortable, healthy, and durable
In these photos you can see the application of Knauf Ecoseal Plus, one of the methods we use to air seal a structure. Ecoseal is a blue water based elastomeric sealant applied with an airless sprayer. We also used silicone to seal the joints between plates.
~ Seth McCanse