Author: Thomas van Raamsdonk

Designing for Steam in Modern Buildings

We pipe water inside buildings, so what happens when we turn it into steam? Below is a quote from two young radio announcers last week that got me thinking: “Everyone understands how steam engines work using steam.” “Do they?” “Yeah, it’s a basic analogy, it’s…

Fire Testing for Temporary Wall Cladding

A look at how a peel and stick weathertightness membrane performs in a fire when used as a temporary cladding. Combustible, not combustible, smoke development, spread of flame. Closed cavity, intumescent seals, peak heat release, total heat release. Too much information? What was the question…

Renovating and Insulating Masonry Walls

Why strapping and lining masonry walls on the inside is not a good idea, not for renovation, not for new builds. In my previous article ‘Adding Insulation and Wall Underlay to Existing Walls’ I referred only to timber-framed walls, but many renovations also include block walls;…

Adding Insulation and Wall Underlay to Existing Walls

How can we safely add insulation to existing walls without risking trapped moisture and compromising durability? Whether you design for renovation work on a daily basis or you need to renovate your own house, it’s a very rare opportunity to make great improvements to the…

Renovation Opportunity and R-Values

In this article, I’m tackling real-estate adverts, renovation by paint, and discussing one area of cost for whole-house renovation and the connection between health and wealth. In the previous article, ‘Achieving Winter Warmth in New Zealand homes’, I made claims about house performance for renovations — making…

Achieving Winter Warmth in New Zealand Homes

Common themes with comfortable high performance houses are insulation, airtightness, ventilation and heating.  Escaping the winter cold by getting a fix in Fiji is pretty good, but this winter I know a few people who have relished winter arriving, and not just because of the…

Water Resistant vs. Watertight

Protecting structure from moisture before, during and after construction is a code minimum requirement of B2 durability. My son bought himself a watch over the holidays. It has a stated water resistance of one metre, but it is only capable of one metre submersion if…

Risk versus Reward in Building Design

How do I get my design to meet expectations of comfort? I was a gymnast, a National Champion in my grade at the age of 10, now I get the enjoyment of watching my boys compete in trampolining. Brilliant. What fascinates me are the different…

Where Does the Airtightness Layer Go?

Getting layering right in New Zealand buildings for summer and winter. Following on from the previous article, one of the ingredients in modern buildings is the creation of a deliberately airtight shell to conserve energy (warm or cool). We often hear about attempts to achieve…

Compatibility and Adhesion of Wet Seals and Sill Tapes

To help deal with the issue of sealants not bonding to substrates, pro clima will be offering a foil tape for window and door openings. We from pro clima have been working with Sika, Tremco and Bostik on this matter and have conducted several tests. While…

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