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Build Your Own Home, Issue #002 --Tyvek Houswrap and your home.
November 30, 2004
Hello,

Wow, it is already time for another issue of Build Your Own Home! Where did the month go? It must be the holidays and all the fun with family and friends. Hope this issue finds you and yours in great spirits for the Holidays!

OK, now let's get down to the business of building your home. This issue of Build Your Own Home is going to be about Tyvek® house wrap. First let me mention Tyvek® does not sponsor this article in anyway, or support Build Your Own Home in anyway.

(Note) You will see parts of this article soon at Build-YourOwn-Home.com. Of course online there will be pictures also. I did not include them here to keep the newsletter e-mail friendly. So go have a look it will be up soon.

What is Tyvek® house wrap?

Tyvek® is a house wrap building membrane used to limit air leakage and still allow breathability. I am sure you have seen it wrapped around the exterior of new homes prior to the final exterior being installed.

What is Tyvek® house wrap made of?

It is made from space age polymers, and allows moisture to escape, but resists water penetration from outside. This avoids harmful condensation build-up in the walls. In addition, Tyvek® is a fire retardant material that is very strong and durable.

House wrap is usually not something that gets much thought when planning a new home, but it should. I believe it is extremely important for house wrap to be used around the walls of your home helping waterproof them. House wrap acts as a second line of defense against water leaking into walls.

I used Tyvek® because it has proven performance. It is very important that you use a house wrap you can rely on because it plays a critical role in weatherproofing your home.

You will see many builders cut corners and not use Tyvek® house wrap and just us a single sheet of foam or nothing at all. The small cost of using a good vapor barrier (house wrap) like Tyvek® is insignificant when you consider the benefits.

Installation Tips

Make sure your use a nail designed to hold down fabric. If you do not your house wrap will be torn off during construction or damaged by the wind tearing it off. We used felt roofing nails with plastic washers. They are available at any building supply.

When any modification is made to an exterior wall make certain you repair the Tyvek® prior to the finished wallboard of siding etc.. is installed. Any gaps can cause air or water leakage.

Use Tyvek® tape to seal all the gaps, and tape the seams together for a tight seal. The tape is expensive, but using an inferior tape as a substitute will cause air and or water leakage in the future.

(Note) Remember that once the exterior of the house is finished you cannot go back in to repair any errors you made in Tyvek® house wrap installation. Slow down take your time and make sure that all the seams are sealed properly with tape, and all windows and openings are sealed according to the manufacturers instructions.

For more installation information go to the Tyvek® house wrap Homepage .

Sealing your home properly using house wrap may seem to be a minor thing but every little bit helps. When I built my home I also had the insulation company foam seal all the joints of the house using expandable foam. Small details add up to a well sealed house for energy saving and comfort for your family.

One of the great things about building your own home is being able to pay attention to the details that truly make a great house that you will enjoy for years to come.

Happy Holidays to you and yours,

George Stevens


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