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Community and Q&A

Zip-R sheathing in the Pacific Northwest

joenorm | Posted in General Questions on

I have read many concerns about Zip-R sheathing having the insulation on the “wrong” side of the sheathing.

Is this a concern in a more temperate 4c climate zone? I’m not sure of the cost of zip-R, but to get everything done at once seems pretty cool.

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  1. Expert Member


    Was long as y0u provide a rain-screen cavity to allow the outside of the Zip-R to dry it will be fine. Depending on where in the PNW you are it may not meet seismic requirements for shear though.

  2. Expert Member
    Peter Yost | | #2

    Hi Joe -

    Ideally, yes, you want the structural sheathing warmed by the exterior insulation. BUT, I believe that the combined, continuous, and rigid water and air barrier the ZIP provides is well worth the ZIP overall configuration.

    1. joenorm | | #3


      So you would recommend this system?

      1. Matthew_M | | #4

        I'm not Peter, but I'm currently building my own house with Zip R-9. As far as I'm concerned, this is default sheathing I'll use for other houses I'll be building.
        The R-9 version works nicely with 2x lumber ripped to block out around window openings, since the insulation is also 1.5".
        The labor savings vs. continuous exterior foam board is considerable.

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