5 of the Newest Innovations in Residential Construction
There’s a popular myth that home building hasn’t really evolved much in a hundred years. While houses continue to be stick-built, unprecedented change has forced builders to re-think planning, products, design, construction and marketing. The ones that thrive are the ones that continue to adapt. Thanks to some innovative products and practices, even the most grizzled building veterans can keep up with changing buyer attitudes and shifting government requirements.
- Encapsulate and Buried Ducts: When HVAC ducts are installed in unconditioned attic spaces, homeowners experience a massive energy loss of up to 45 percent. According to research by Building America, when builders insulate ducts with spray foam and bury them within attic insulation, the energy efficiency performance elevates to match that of ducts in air conditioned spaces.
- BASF – HP Wall Systems: These structural insulated wall assemblies deliver lateral bracing without OSB, achieve up to R-34 in 2×4 construction, save lumber, simplify the residential construction process and improve energy and structural performance. They also allow builders to achieve 2×6 performance in a 2×4 construct.
- Next-generation Framing: Researchers have developed some innovative, cost-effective, advanced framing solutions that reduce thermal bridging. These include the use of oversized oriented strand board sheathing for walls and offsetting exterior wall framing from interior wall framing.
- Window Rehabilitation: In its Window Replacement, Rehabilitation, & Repair Guide for building industry professionals, the S. Energy Department details new ways to install and repair windows to maximize comfort and energy efficiency. Options include window inserts, sash and frame refurbishment and other techniques that lower utility bills, while maintaining the integrity of a property’s original design.
- Retrax Solar Solutions: Typical solar construction includes expensive rooftop installations that can lead to pricey roof repairs. Created by Aquarius Brands, this patented solar product is easy to install and relocate. Pre-wired and ready-to-go, the device can be activated in less than half-an-hour. It also requires no scaffolding and can be transported by truck.
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