Improving the energy-efficiency of new and existing construction has long been a focus of building science. When it comes to insulation, exterior rigid foam is the choice of many builders, because it stops the thermal bridge through the studs.
As effective as rigid foam is as a continuous insulation solution, it presents its own unique challenges with installing windows and flashing the rough openings. Until ThermalBuck™ launched in 2015, there really wasn’t a good way to insulate and create a thermal break around the mounting points of windows & doors.
With an R-value range from 4.4 to 11, we knew using ThermalBuck™ would increase the R-value of the total wall assembly, and become part of a true continuous insulation solution.
But just how much better would ThermalBuck™ insulate than a wood buck?
Using thermal imaging, we recorded the performance of ThermalBuck™ against a traditional wood buck.
These photos show two window installations side by side. (l) ThermalBuck™ (r) traditional wood buck.
The wood window buck (r) allows an enormous amount of heat to escape, while the window installation with ThermalBuck™ (l) is effectively limiting thermal bridging.
The thermal images are powerful, but the temperature readings tell the complete story.
In the two mock-ups above, three temperature sensors were placed on both the ThermalBuck™ installation (l) and the wood buck installation (r). The temperature condition on the exterior of the structure was -6.67 ºF, and the indoor of the structure 72.76 ºF.
On the exterior of the structure (point A) the wood buck looses 7.88 ºF, or 14.55 ºF total degrees from the outside temperature. ThermalBuck™ only loses .11ºF , or 6.78 total degrees from the outside temperature.
53.4% more heat is lost using a wood buck system than ThermalBuck™.
ThermalBuck™ High-Performance ROESE truly creates a significant thermal break at the mounting points of windows & doors. Using ThermalBuck™ as part of your continuous insulation solution can make a significant impact on the amount of thermal bridging that occurs through your building envelope.
To learn more about thermal bridging, see what the experts have to say at greenbuildingadvisor.com