We’re extremely efficient at framing houses nowadays, but the way we frame them is extremely inefficient, says Dr. Joseph Lstiburek. Inefficient because we use way too much wood. Too much wood not only boosts your lumber bill but it boosts your utility bill as well because wood is a bad insulator. You can build a perfectly strong house with 40% less wood and increase the R-value of your walls by 50%. A sidebar illustration shows how ”smart framing” can be phased in on a production crew in three steps, each with measurable cost savings. A final sidebar explains how to build inset shear panels, which were developed and tested by the author’s Building America team in conjunction with the Army Corps of Engineers.
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