expanded polystyrene

Curbside Recycling for Polystyrene Foam

Posted on March 29,2015 by ScottG in EPS

In a first for the province of Nova Scotia, a waste recycling agency has launched a curbside recycling program for expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam, turning waste foam into blocks of condensed material that can be sold to manufacturers and turned into new products. Two years in the making, the program got off the ground in mid-November, according to an article in the The Kings County Advertiser and Register.

A German Deep-Energy Retrofit

Posted on March 29,2015 by Andrew Dey in deep energy retrofit

I recently visited a job site on the outskirts of Berlin that had previously caught my eye. Although the buildings were shrouded in the usual scaffolding and screening, I had noticed while biking by that the work involved “energetische sanierung,” or energy retrofitting.

In Cold Climates, R-5 Foam Beats R-6

Posted on March 29,2015 by user-756436 in EPS

Researchers have known for years that most types of insulation — including fiberglass batts, extruded polystyrene (XPS), and expanded polystyrene (EPS) — perform better at low temperatures than high temperatures. The phenomenon was described by Chris Schumacher, an engineer and researcher at Building Science Corporation, at a conference in 2011: “If you measure the R-value of an R-13 fiberglass batt, you’ll get different results at different outdoor temperatures. If the outdoor temperature rises, the R-value goes down.

Do We Really Need 12 Inches of Foam Under Our Slab?

Posted on March 29,2015 by user-961160 in EPS

[Editor's note: Roger and Lynn Normand are building a [no-glossary]Passivhaus[/no-glossary] in Maine. This is the 21st article in a series that will follow their project from planning through construction.]

How to Install Rigid Foam Sheathing

Posted on March 29,2015 by user-756436 in EPS

UPDATED on March 18, 2015 What’s the best way to install foam insulation on the outside of a wall? Although GBA has published many articles and videos on the topic, we continue to receive frequent questions from readers asking how to install rigid foam sheathing on exterior walls — so it’s time to provide a primer on the topic.

How Much Insulation is Needed?

Posted on March 29,2015 by AlexWilson in expanded polystyrene

Standard residential construction in much of the country is 2x4 framing with fiberglass insulation, achieving a paltry R-10 or so in the walls. If insulation is installed at all on the foundation walls, it’s rarely more than an inch thick, and insulation is almost never put under slabs. In Vermont, we typically do a lot better. Act 250, enacted nearly four decades ago, required developers to improve energy performance and that led to a widespread switch to 2x6 framing in home building.

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