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Details and Specifications for Cost-effective and Energy-Efficient Exterior Cavity-Wall Applications

Program number 702

Course Description

The second section of the Cavity Wall course focuses on the details used for spray-applied foam (SPF) building enclosure systems. While the means of keeping envelope construction costs down is discussed, this is only one of the considerations covered. In addition, how well designed and executed buildings with fully integrated systems can actually have a significantly lower up-front cost while providing superior energy performance is addressed.

Following a review of health, safety, and welfare issues, including causes of mold, mildew, and structural failures related to cavity wall moisture problems, details and specifications are closely examined. Materials and product selection and compatibility for various types of SPF and A/V barrier wall assemblies are covered, including examination of product samples and an assembly mockup. Choices regarding product function, buildability, and durability are discussed. Numerous details are presented for typical conditions from below grade up to the wall-to-roof intersection, including many examples of successful and unsuccessful details (interactive). Detailing for higher on-site productivities and methods of communicating design intent, specification format and organization, and quality assurance procedures and commissioning protocols are also included. 

A Powerpoint slide presentation is the basic format of this program. (This segment of the two-hour course qualifies for a one-hour continuing education credit and qualifies for Health, Safety, and Welfare credit. Depending on the number of questions, this program typically takes from 1 to 1-1/2 hours to complete.)

The first part of this Course, “A General Overview of the Exterior Cavity Wall Approach to Creating High-Performance Building Envelopes - Program number AIA701” covers the general background of when and why this strategy is appropriate. The third part of this Course, “Project Management for Exterior Cavity-Wall Applications - Program number AIA703” addresses the construction and commissioning process.

Henri C. Fennell is President of Building Envelope Services, Inc. & FOAM-TECH, North Thetford, Vermont, USA.

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