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I am a site development contractor that is having a house built by a local custom builder and I want to do some DIY air sealing before we close in with insulation & drywall.

My question is what areas are most important and will give me the best bang for my buck by using some spray foam & / or caulk. The builder will be taking care of any exterior penetrations.

thanks for your time. Would have hired a professional to do the air sealing but the wife spent that $$$ on light fixtures....
 

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Box Builder
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The time to deal with air leaks is in the framing process. If you are beyond this step already, then I would focus on mudsills, rim joists, plates. If you have rafter tails running through your sheathing, those need to be sealed too. There are so many spots. These are some of the worst.
 

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Joseph A. Capece
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I can say one thing, being conscious about air sealing has completely changed the way I look at every project from start to finish. Go into a properly air sealed home or a standard construction home and look at the thermostat. 70 deg is going to feel much different in a tight home than in a drafty one.
 

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Air sealing....

Two "common" ways would be
Air tight drywall approach
Taped/sealed sheathing approach.

Insulating with dense pack cellulose, while not air sealing, eliminates to almost elmininates air movement in a wall.

You could hang interior sheathing as well, taped and seal then build a service cavity then rock as well.

I'm an electrician so take it for what it's worth.

Air sealing, as already said, is best decided and agreed upon before building and or framing begins. Detailing the mud sill, subfloor to bottom plate, inter story/floor connections and the roof to top plate connections are all easier to address while being built. Sill seal, epmd gaskets, acoustical sealant or any combination of these is normally used.

Determining the locations of the insulation, air sealing layer, vapor barrier/retarder and your wrb all have an affect on the materials used for all of the above. :whistling
 

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For my 2 cents here!

Years back, we never had the mold issues we have now, we never had the allergy issues we have now, we never had the wood rot issues we have now, we never had the flu issues we have now, etc. etc. WHY?

My opinion, YES we paid more heat bills, more cooling bills (fans then no ac) BUT we were able to breath FREASH AIR!!

NOT some day old fish that we cooked, dad in the crapper, and the dog doing what-ever? (and YES woman/wives do PUFF!) LOL

We all need to breath, we as people/homes/pets/wood/etc. moisture is a issue, heat loss and cooling as well.

I would rather pay a higher heating bill, than a MOLD removal bill!!!!
 

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For my 2 cents here!

Years back, we never had the mold issues we have now, we never had the allergy issues we have now, we never had the wood rot issues we have now, we never had the flu issues we have now, etc. etc. WHY?

My opinion, YES we paid more heat bills, more cooling bills (fans then no ac) BUT we were able to breath FREASH AIR!!

NOT some day old fish that we cooked, dad in the crapper, and the dog doing what-ever? (and YES woman/wives do PUFF!) LOL

We all need to breath, we as people/homes/pets/wood/etc. moisture is a issue, heat loss and cooling as well.

I would rather pay a higher heating bill, than a MOLD removal bill!!!!

Dave in PA ignorantly brings up the point that air tight homes must be accompanied by a HRV system. Building science is a science and the trickle down effect means that the system is often short circuited…

Any builder should be studying this stuff. Its largely prescriptive and can be researched while on the jon from your iWhatever…
 

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Well Dave, do your homework. Much of what your discussing should be easily addressed by anybody who has the slightest idea how to air seal a home. And in most cases, since energy efficiency is the purpose, we are transitioning to sealed combustion heating and power vented water heaters at least, drastically reducing the amount of air change you would normally need in a home.

Now, are you aware that soon some states are going to allow air sealing in a home for medical purposes? To prevent the pollutants carried through duct systems and chases throughout the home that shouldn't be there and cause asthma and similar issues for children and elderly. Also for PROPER ventilation of your moisture fans.

Air sealing is a critical component of comfort, health, and efficiency in a home. More reason why an educated professional should be doing the installation of such measures. So please, stick to your area of expertise for every ones benefit.
 

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Well Dave, do your homework. Much of what your discussing should be easily addressed by anybody who has the slightest idea how to air seal a home. And in most cases, since energy efficiency is the purpose, we are transitioning to sealed combustion heating and power vented water heaters at least, drastically reducing the amount of air change you would normally need in a home.

Now, are you aware that soon some states are going to allow air sealing in a home for medical purposes? To prevent the pollutants carried through duct systems and chases throughout the home that shouldn't be there and cause asthma and similar issues for children and elderly. Also for PROPER ventilation of your moisture fans.

Air sealing is a critical component of comfort, health, and efficiency in a home. More reason why an educated professional should be doing the installation of such measures. So please, stick to your area of expertise for every ones benefit.
Mr. ASInsulation, (would call you by name, but have no clue, can't find it anywhere nor in your profile??)!

I was ONLY stating my 2 cents, not giving ANY info on what to do, how to do, or, the CORRECT procedure of what to do, to solve the issue!

But, Thank-You for the knowledge and the support to this site, I will be waiting for more in-site from your Company, I am sure that you are willing and able to supply, any information as needed? For it has the training, and you are willing to, and, do the correct work, as needed, in the time of need!

Thank You for the info, and time spent.

Dave in PA
 
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