Modern Building Techniques
Ever wondered how ancient structures such as the pyramids, the Roman Coliseum, Stonehenge, and more stood the test of time, while many of our modern structures fail due to rot? Simple. Ancient builders used plain stone for their structures. Who cared if the stones got wet, or battered with wind or hail? Today, our structures consist mainly of wood and steel, and as such are not as well suited to fend off the elements. Maybe it’s time we re-think our building techniques.
Sure, today we can build huge structures never seen before in any known civilization, but exactly how durable are they? When put to the test, wood, steel, and other easily rotted or corroded materials inevitably wear away and collapse. Though rock on the outside of buildings makes an excellent barrier between the harsh elements and the interior, it does little to keep out water vapor.
How Modern Building Techniques Control Air and Moisture
Our evolved methods of construction should easily facilitate four basic control layers to truly separate the outside from the inside.
· Rain Control
· Air Control
· Vapor Control
· Thermal Control
These layers, listed in order of importance, should make up the basic structure of the perfect wall. And the best location for these layers is, surprisingly, on the outer layers of the wall. “Don’t we traditionally place insulation on the insides of walls?” Precisely, but wouldn’t it make more sense to put insulation on the outside? Why put effort into minimizing cold, moisture, and air once it passes through a layer of our wall when we can stop it from entering in the first place?
With our rain, air, vapor and thermal control barriers moved to the outside of our walls, controlling moisture and vapor on the inside becomes easier. And thus, we minimize or completely eliminate the risk of mold and other decay associated with moisture in the air and leaks from the outside.
This concept is true for roofing and foundations as well. If this technique was put into practice, we could begin seeing buildings so durable they could have an estimated lifespan of 500 years!
To read more about The Perfect Wall, see Dr. Joe Lsitburek’s article here. For more about weather barrier technology, we invite you to visit our website.