Full filling of Masonry Cavity wall construction with polystyrene blown in insulation beads. YAY or NAY?
Hey guys, basically I'm just looking for any opinions on the subject of insulating masonry homes in terms of moisture build up and structural issues (outer and inner leaf of concrete blockwork, with a cavity between, of at least 100mm (4") gap and exterior face usually stuccoed or pebble dashed over this).
Here in Ireland, a popular way over the last few years to retrofit homes built of concrete cavity wall construction as mentioned above (built from 1970's onwards) is to insulate between the concrete leafs fully with blown in, bonded EPS beads. I have read some of the articles on this site regarding insulating of the interior side of old solid multi-whyte brick buildings particularly in the northeast of the US in urban areas resulting in structural concerns and moisture damage to the brick facades due to the prevention of drying on the interior by the new insulation.
Is there a similar concern that by fully insulating the cavity space in block cavity wall homes, this may damage the exterior leaf as it cannot now dry on its interior side? Is this concern less valid when talking of block exterior facades of only 4" thickness? Is it only of real concern when it is load-bearing like the inner leaf for example, and not much of an issue on the exterior? Many homes actually have a brick exterior, cavity space then a concrete block inner leaf; are these brick facades more of a concern when filling the cavities than a concrete block exterior leaf? Climate is wet, windy and generally somewhere between mild and cold.
These bonded EPS beads are supposed to allow moisture ingress from the exterior leaf to trickle downwards along the waxy surface of the beads preventing moisture build up or ability to travel inwards but I don't see anyone speaking about ventilation to actually DRY the cavity face of the brick/blockwork exterior leaf? Any opinions out there?
Posted Jan 20, 2012 9:27 PM ET
Edited Jan 20, 2012 9:29 PM ET
Other Questions in Energy efficiency and durability