2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?

 
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Old 12-18-2005, 08:08 PM   #1
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2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Is one better than the other? Will it help with insulation?
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Old 12-18-2005, 08:41 PM   #2
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


2x6 you get r-19. 2x4 with minimal windows which equals less heat loss and is as effient. But who wants less windows? Other than the insulation factor 2x4 is cheaper in the building phase.

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Old 12-18-2005, 09:01 PM   #3
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Depending on what "zone" you are in, and if the IECC is enforced as part of your building codes, you may have no choice but to build with 2x6 for the added R value. That's the way it is in my area.
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Old 12-18-2005, 09:05 PM   #4
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Quote:
Originally Posted by mdshunk
Depending on what "zone" you are in, and if the IECC is enforced as part of your building codes, you may have no choice but to build with 2x6 for the added R value. That's the way it is in my area.

It is enforced here but the only way around it is like four windows per floor level; then 2x4 can be used. It probably has some thing to do with sq ft per floor but I don't really care to know one window per room is nasty unless you like living in a cave.
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Old 12-18-2005, 09:13 PM   #5
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


I am told that it is required here depending on the location (wind zones). Right now everything is in such a state of flux, you don't know who to believe and what was code today may change tomorrow.
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Old 12-18-2005, 09:45 PM   #6
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


I am in San Antonio, Texas. So the "zone" would be ?
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Old 12-18-2005, 09:47 PM   #7
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


You have to check that out locally.
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Old 12-18-2005, 11:10 PM   #8
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Bexar county is in Zone 4.

That means R-26 ceilings, R-13 walls, R-11 floors, R-5 basement walls, and no required slab perimeter R value. With these minimum requirements, you can build with 2x4's if you use the higher density 3-1/2" fiberglass in the walls.
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Old 12-18-2005, 11:53 PM   #9
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


What MD said.
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Old 01-03-2006, 11:40 PM   #10
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


In addition to the high density insulation there is another method to meet the required R factors. There is a styrofoam paneling that you can put on the exterior of the building and then stucco over that. Im not sure what it is called as I stick with 2X6 walls. Much stronger and most of the seismic hold downs require it. And then there is also the ICFs' that can be used. No wood at all hardly. But IMHO a serious pain in the ass to work with.
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Old 01-03-2006, 11:47 PM   #11
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Quote:
Originally Posted by wbsbadboy
And then there is also the ICFs' that can be used. No wood at all hardly. But IMHO a serious pain in the ass to work with.
That's not a humble opinion. That's a factual statement. No doubt.
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Old 01-04-2006, 03:52 PM   #12
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Quote:
Originally Posted by wbsbadboy
In addition to the high density insulation there is another method to meet the required R factors. There is a styrofoam paneling that you can put on the exterior of the building and then stucco over that. Im not sure what it is called as I stick with 2X6 walls. Much stronger and most of the seismic hold downs require it. And then there is also the ICFs' that can be used. No wood at all hardly. But IMHO a serious pain in the ass to work with.
EIFS?
Have heard rumors that a certain high-end apartment building in Cleveland where some of the Cavaliers spend their "post-game" evenings is making them sick.
Covered with EIFS... Allows no moisture escape/ventilation whatsoever.

Yes,ICFs are also difficult for trades to work with,but very strong.
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Old 01-04-2006, 05:43 PM   #13
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


If you have the $$$ go with 2X6. The house has a lot more of a solid "feel" to it not to mention that it really cuts the noise level down. Be prepared for all the extra cost of extension jambs for all your windows and doors.
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Old 01-04-2006, 05:45 PM   #14
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Quote:
Originally Posted by ContractorSon
EIFS?
Have heard rumors that a certain high-end apartment building in Cleveland where some of the Cavaliers spend their "post-game" evenings is making them sick.
Covered with EIFS... Allows no moisture escape/ventilation whatsoever.

Yes,ICFs are also difficult for trades to work with,but very strong.
Not the fault of EIFS, sounds like the HVAC wasn't designed properly.
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Old 02-15-2006, 04:52 PM   #15
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Gees , these are old threads . Not that its any importance . Its a lot easier by far to frame two by four walls . Mechanically it may be more practical to do 2x6 , not only for R but for electrical roughs ,etc.. Also if its two storys or better . In the higher elevations where you have snow loads to work in to design, 2x6s hold up the heavy loads . Might be a local code as well
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Old 02-17-2006, 12:51 PM   #16
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


Up north here near Canada we have what is called the Michigan Energy code. It's great reading....but pretty much everything here ae 2x6's.
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Old 02-21-2006, 01:51 PM   #17
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


2*6: 24 o.c, greater r values, less thermal bridging, and IMHO crowning studs.
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Old 02-21-2006, 02:50 PM   #18
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


I always did 2x6 but any short wall, like bays and box window where you have header, window , and a little piece of insulation on the bottom, I always went with 2x4. Since you end up with almost no insulation in the wall you get the advantage of 1) no extension jambs 2) nicer trim detail 3) more room in the bay. By bay I'm talking about the built out floor joist bay with 3 individual windows.
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Old 04-09-2006, 12:15 AM   #19
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


If you have any type of volume go with 2x6 or better. I built a crazy house cantering over water with 12' and 14' 2x 4 walls and they just shake; I mean enough to knock pictures off with any winds. I even put studs on 1' centers and it didn't help. We have a rule down here or did. 2x6 on the bottom, 2x4 on the top, that was when everything was 8' walls and energy was cheaper. Now we just frame to the plans and usally have to call the engineer once a job to ask him "are you sure about this". I recomend this because those guys stamp anything. We set a set of trusses a few years ago 60' span 14' walls, 8/12 with a 2x4 bottom cord that colapsed; Come to find out they had to be like 2x6 or 8 (forgot). Last week we were building a 2 story with a deck to support like a 5000 lb hot tub, all joist running to an 18' double 2x12. With joist hangers...still waiting on new engineering.
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Old 04-14-2007, 03:06 PM   #20
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Re: 2x4 Or 2x6 Outer Walls?


I am in the SoCal desert. 2x6 framing is a good way to go if you are going to be in the house for a long while. My neighbor finished his house a couple of years ago. It has 2x6 exterior walls. He runs his central air all summer long and his bill is only slightly more then those of us with water coolers and older 2x4 houses. I am not sure how 2x6 const compares to sips, it would be interesting to know.

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