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Those of you following this blog will know that a lot of time and energy has gone into making Canada’s Greenest Home as air tight and energy efficient as possible. And you probably saw our self-congratulatory post about our great blower door results last week.

This was the first piece of cut barrier we noticed, right above the door.

So imagine our shock and horror when we got to the house this week after the drywall crew had been there to hang board, and saw that they had cut through our air barrier in countless places! And this was after having a talk with the owner of the company stressing the importance of air tightness in the project and receiving his assurance that his crew were aware of this and would be careful!

It doesn’t really matter how well designed a building might be, how much attention each person on the crew puts into their work… if one trade on site is not committed to the idea and the execution, the building will not meet its goals.

In this case, we found these tears and will peel off the board and repair them. That should bring us back to the air tightness we’d achieved prior to the drywall (especially with the Siga tapes).

But if we had stayed off site until the drywall was done, all of this would have been covered up and we would have been surprised to find our final blower test showing much worse results than our initial test.

Is it any wonder the building industry squashed the proposed regulations that would have required a blower door test by code? There just isn’t enough training about high performance building for the trades and not enough buy-in from the guys on the ground to ensure that buildings will perform as well as they can and should.

The roto-zip tool leaves distinctive shred marks…

…While the drywall knife leaves a clean, straight cut. Both require the drywall to be removed in order to repair.

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