A thermal bridge is a surface area (mostly in a building structure), which has a higher potential for “heat transfer” than adjacent materials. Thermal bridges contribute to the overall reduction of insulation performance, oftentimes throughout the entire building structure. Often referred to by the professionals as a “cold” bridge or a “heat” bridge, thermal bridging occurs in three ways:
Traditional summer cottages have little or no insulation, because in most climates, there’s just no need. Warm summer temperatures don’t promote much indoor moisture accumulation, and for the most part, everything is dry. For those who plan to insulate their cottage, and to use it during the winter months, there’s much to consider. Keeping heat inside and cold outside is essential to indoor comfort, but there’s also air moisture and condensation to take into consideration. Continue reading
The concept of “consumers beware” takes on new relevancy when it comes to home insulation. And that relevancy becomes acute with respect to R-Values – the industry measure that defines insulation performance. It’s not that much different than any other consumer product – like that new SUV that assertively advertises 12 liters/100 kilometers, but performs at 18 liters/100 kilometers in real life. With R-Values it’s the same – the Nominal R-Value is the “estimated” level of performance, while the Effective R-Value is the “actual” level of performance in real conditions.
Every residential home is different – built in a different era; with different specifications; and with different building materials. As such, Building Codes allow for standardization and consistency in building practices. This would apply to everything from a newly constructed home, to a basement reno, to insulation retrofitting. However, for the most part, these codes are considered minimum requirements. And while this may suffice for many homeowners, it’s far better to go beyond the minimum, employing a quality contractor who builds with quality materials and products.