Custom Home builder Houston Heights | Life Experience University
11-18

Article written for Bicycle Bungalows

This week Bicycle Bungalows Custom home builder Houston Heights, had a new course at life experience University. We completed a house earlier this year where we built a wine room underneath the stairway. It’s a fairly small room because the stairs go up halfway to a landing and then make a return 180°. Therefore the room is only about 4 feet wide and about 6 feet deep and 8 feet tall. When we framed out the room we spray phone close cell spray foam insulation on all surfaces to prevent that was the loss of temperature or moisture from entering the space. During the past couple of weeks we found some of the stair treads are starting to buckle him warp. We changed out about six stair treads and have them already finished. The owner was having some work done in her laundry room which is adjacent to the stairwell and wine room. They found that the exhaust fan in the laundry room was not operating properly and opened up to find out what was wrong and discovered that there was mildew growing in that space. Custom Home builder Houston Heights believes that the mildew beneath the treads indicates that there is an issue with the insulation being insufficient to prevent condensation from forming on the outside of the wine room walls. We will need to determine how much additional insulation should be placed in the wall cavities and how much should be sealed. It makes sense for a moist warm area such as the dog bath that is in the laundry room under the stairs against the cold wall from the wine room we create a moisture problem.
 
Another issue Custom Home builder Houston Heights is finding in this house is mildew forming around the old single pane double hung windows. These windows are difficult to seal because there is not a very tight fit with these old windows. We were required to use these windows because of historic restrictions on this house. This is been a huge complaint of mine about the historic restrictions. When they first went into a fact we were allowed to change old windows for new windows that look the same and were made from the same material such as wood. The new windows seal much tighter and are energy-efficient. They are much safer and more difficult to break into the house, and are much quieter because with the two panes of glass keeps up exterior noise from entering the house. When the air conditioning is running in the house and it is hot and humid outside which is typical for a Houston summer or fall or spring, we find a lot of condensation forming on the inside of the windows. Is condensation will cause the paint to fail early and cause wood rot on the window sash and the window cell. This has been explained to the do-gooders on the historic commission for years but it is more important to keep Historic fabric in place rather than replace it was something modern and more functional. One thing Custom Home builder Houston Heights has discovered that helps with the old windows is to use vinyl window jam liners that go on the sides of the window sashes and inside of the wood window jams. When installed properly there is no need for the window sash wait any longer. No matter how hard one tries to insulate around the weights in the side jams there is a lot of Air leakage. With these jet vinyl jam liners much of that linkage is contained. Now the main areas are elite of leakage or where the two sashes meet in the middle, at the top seal, and at the bottom where the lower sash hits the window sill. We have been told that using storm windows is a good solution To cut down on these problems but it looks like crappy storm windows in a cheap northern house with old single Hung aluminum windows. I can’t understand why we can’t use modern windows to save energy. Most of the people for historic preservation like to drive around in their Prius or teslas and feel good about saving the planet well they want people who are spending a lot of money to remodel their historic houses have to waste a lot of money on energy cost.
 
A third issue with the old houses being used in modern world is insulation for the exterior walls. Custom Home builder Houston Heights found that when these houses were built there was no air conditioning. These houses had balloon framing for the exterior walls which means that the studs ran from the sale been up to the attic space and was generally open at the bottom and top to allow air to flow freely through the wall cavities. The outside of the studs has the wood siding or some sort of wood with the brick Veneer attached. The inside of the wall cavities or built up with shiplap wood. The extra wood has lasted for 100 years because when it gets wet it’s allowed to drive with a free air flow behind the word. Now with air-conditioning interiors, you have warm moist air all the outside trying to get to the cold dry air inside due to a differential in vapor pressure. This moist air will condense when it hits the cold interior wall at the backside of the ship lap. If you maintain air space in the wall cavity and some air movement condensation should dry out without creating any mildew for moisture problems. A lot of people will try to make your house more comfortable by blowing in some sort of insulation to fill the wall cavities. Guess what happens when you have warm moist air working its way into that cavity yet can’t get back out and dry out properly? That’s right you have mildew forming in wood rot and mold. Therefore Bicycle Bungalows Custom Home builder Houston Heights will no longer will insulate and a wall space Ware is not sealed properly and where there is no moisture barrier on the outside of the studs. And modern construction we install wood sheathing outside of the stairs and put a vapor barrier such as Tyvek that will prevent moisture from migrating into the wall cavity.