to the website for our new building manual, Breathing Walls!
Our print version was first released in April 2008 and as of late December 2008, we have sold or distributed over 120 copies.
Breathing Walls offers practical alternatives to conventional modern building practices that keep homes airtight. Walls built today are energy-efficient but cannot handle the inevitable intrusion of moisture, resulting in mold, ill health for occupants and structural damage. Instead of "build tight, ventilate right," we say make your envelope "waterproof but vapor permeable." We work with, not against, the forces of nature.
Healthy, nontoxic alternatives are provided in our manual for building walls, foundations, slabs and roofs that allow moisture to dry out before mold can grow while effectively insulating your house and saving energy. Contractor-friendly choices include various thick, "breathable" materials, including low-density fiber-cement wall forms or blocks, autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC), and wood log. We also offer a thin-wall option that employs magnesia-based boards, a material extensively used in Asia. Detailed protocols explain the application of these materials on the job site.
Written by building biologists, this is a helpful reference manual for builders, architects, designers and homeowners wanting to build green and healthy.
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If you would like to purchase a copy, you may order the print version by clicking here or by clicking on the "Buy Now" button above.
For those of you waiting for our eBook version, we appreciate your patience. We ran into technical difficulties in June 2008 with the security software, and that version is on hold for the indefinite future. If you need the information contained in our manual now, we suggest you purchase a print version at this time. If you order a print copy now, a $10 rebate will be applied off the price of the eBook.
If you also want the electronic version at some point in the future, please sign up for notification when the eBook is ready. However, again please be aware that we will not be able to produce the electronic version anytime soon.
Update 6/5/2008: We just added a free download of our 39-page eBook Sampler to our Excerpts page. This contains all the shorter excerpts, including one newly posted complete chapter and three partial chapters. From these you can get a very good idea of what's in the book.
TABLE OF CONTENTS (Click here for a more detailed look inside the chapters.)
Part One. INTRODUCTION
Chapter 2. The Origins of Building Biology¬
Chapter 3. Our Offer to the Building Trade
4. Our View of “
Chapter 5. The Basic Principles of Bau-Biologie¬
Part Two. THE BREATHABLE BUILDING ENVELOPE
Chapter 9. How to Construct a Breathable, Thermally Massive Envelope
Chapter 10. Breathable Options for Thin-Wall Construction
Chapter 11. Slab
Chapter 12. Foundation
Chapter 13. Roof and Attic
Chapter 14. Additional Design Considerations
Chapter 15. Examples of Homes Built with Low-Density Fiber-Cement Wall Forms
Part Three. CONSTRUCTION PROTOCOLS
Chapter 16. Worker and Environmental Protection during Construction
Chapter 17. Below-Grade Envelope
Chapter 18. Above-Grade Envelope
Part Four. CONCLUSION
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