Dan Morrison | September 12, 2018

Jobsite Handbook // Concrete & Masonry, Framing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Energy Star Checklist, Section 1: Overall Air Barrier and Thermal Alignment

18 Videos, articles, and animations showing you how to get through Section 1 of the Energy Star Thermal Bypass Checklist.


This growing collection of videos and animations on Energy Star for Homes certification is about the continuity between various components of the air barrier system and the thermal envelope. We are missing a detail for section 1.3, Attic Eave Baffles, but we are working on it.



Article // Glues, Sealants, Coatings, Roofing, Siding & Exterior Trim, Insulation & Air Sealing

The Pen Test for Air-, Water- and Thermal-Tightness

Water and air leaks in a building shell are difficult enough to detail on simple buildings. Complex structures can cause headaches for builders, remodelers, and architects who don't pick up their pens and trace at the design stage.

details // Glues, Sealants, Coatings, Framing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Air Sealing Basics—Begin at the Plate

It's easy to air seal the middle of the wall where there are no gaps, cracks, or joints. The edges are a different story, especially when one edge is wood and the other is concrete.

details // Framing, Siding & Exterior Trim, WRB & Flashing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Airtight Walls—Housewrap and Sheathing as an Air Barrier

A tight air barrier is the best way to build an energy-efficient house. Outside the sheathing are many chances to make it better.

details // WRB & Flashing, Windows & Doors

Window and WRB: Integration Keeps Water Out of Walls

Sealing the layers—and overlapping them right—is how high performance building gets done

Video // WRB & Flashing, Windows & Doors

3 Ways to Flash a Window Sill with Flashing Tape

How to install pan flashing and jamb flashing on a window opening in a wall that will be thickened with 4 inches of foam—using regular, non-stretch peel-and-stick flashing tape.

details // Framing, Insulation & Air Sealing, Tile, Flooring, Drywall

Airtight Walls From the Inside

Regular walls just won't cut it anymore. Higher-achieving energy codes mean higher-performance walls, airtightness targets, and home energy rating system (HERS) scores. Here are six improvement targets to shoot for.

details // Glues, Sealants, Coatings, Insulation & Air Sealing, Tile, Flooring, Drywall

Airtight Drywall: Step by Step

With blower door tests in the building code, it is up to more than just the insulators or the GC to deliver results: many trades have a stake.  


details // Concrete & Masonry, WRB & Flashing, Tile, Flooring, Drywall

Details for Warm and Dry Basement Living Space

Warm and dry basement living space begins with keeping the basement dry—duh. All moisture from outside must be directed away from the interior walls and slab.


details // Concrete & Masonry, Insulation & Air Sealing

Monolithic Slab Edge Insulation for Warm and Hot Climates

An affordable insulated slab foundation suitable for climate zones 1, 2, and 3

details // Concrete & Masonry, Insulation & Air Sealing

Frost-Protected Monolithic Slab

An affordable insulated slab foundation suitable for climate zones 4, 5, and 6

details // Concrete & Masonry, WRB & Flashing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Warm and Dry Monolithic Slab with Brick Ledge

Adding brick to the outside of a house complicates insulating outside a slab. So Insulate inside.

details // Concrete & Masonry

A Warm and Dry Basement Slab

A four dimensional detail drawing of an insulated and damp-resistant basement slab

Video // Concrete & Masonry

How to Pour an Insulated Floating Slab

"Concrete is a rapacious creditor, it will definitely get its money out of you one way or the other. And if you're not on your game, it's gonna win."

Article // Concrete & Masonry, Insulation & Air Sealing

Slab Edge Insulation: Why it Matters

You can't stop heat flow, but you can keep your floor from becoming a big ol' heat sink


details // Framing, WRB & Flashing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Sill Seal with Flashing Tape Air Barrier

The biggest crack in the house, revisited for #ThrowbackThursday

details // Framing, Insulation & Air Sealing

Airseal the Rim Joist and Wall Framing Connection

Glue the rim joist, caulk the gaps, and overhang the wall sheathing to tighten this leaky building assembly  


Article // Framing

Advanced Framing Do's and Don't Bothers

A carpenter's take on less wood in walls  

Article // Framing

The Best Way to Frame: Less Wood, More Thought

Less is more, more or less. And now it is codified.

Jobsite Handbook // Insulation & Air Sealing

Exterior Insulation Guide: Cold Climate

Everything* you need to know about adding insulation to the outside of old homes with cold bones


Nice curation of an important topic

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