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Old 03-11-2012, 10:14 AM   #31
John Bridge
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George, I hope you noticed all the smilies I put in my post. They indicate that I'm joking. The smiles are found to the right of the text box when you type.
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:30 AM   #32
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A) I could not agree more from a building sciences perspective that an exterior wall system needs to allow vapor transmission and where appropriate, have proper drainage planes. One look at a mold infested tear out would convince anyone that attention to design and installation detail here is important.

This is why foil faced rigid foam board has given way to unfaced foam and Fi Foil came out with a hi perm version (with slits in it) and lo perm elastomeric exterior paint is now discouraged for new construction. I guess one could argue that these are still not hi perm enough but they account for virtually all new construction here. I considered aerated concrete block to avoid additional insulation and pick up additional soundproofing but I could not find a collection subs willing to work with it.

All exterior walls are the same: 8" block-1.5" furring strips/air gap-Fi Foil, including the shower areas. Drywall hanging starts this week and I have a few choices: 1) tile backer against the fi foil like every other wall, 2) cut additional slits in the fi foil in areas with tile backer, 3) remove the Fi Foil in tile backer areas.

B) Point taken on interior plumbing elsewhere but it seems that the wall containing the shower head and mixing valves might be at higher risk. More mechanical action and solder joints as well as direct penetrations from a high water area.

C) Many comments here about the "speed bump" issue at board joints being a reason to prefer a backer board such as Permabase with tapered reinforced edges but if it is prefered to just let the joints get handled at the Kerdi step then it should not matter. A more pressing issue appears to be hydration during thinset/Kerdi hence plain white drywall being prefered and Hardi backer being cautioned. Does rough vs smooth on cement board matter here?

Thanks,
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:48 AM   #33
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C. Same as C in post 31.
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:15 PM   #34
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John

Thank you for the lighthearted comments, and yes I am an engineer (as well as in a family with 50 years in the contruction business). We have a compulsive need for technical detail and extensive pre-planning (as you have noted) but that's how we get 7 million pound rockets off the ground and to the moon or 5 million transistors to all work at the same time on a chip the size of a pencil eraser. We run the risk of overdoing it on projects of a less demanding nature but this is one of the most important subjects to me in my home based on personal experience with poor building practices leading to water damage, toxic mold and it's effect on my families health. This region is notorious for poor shower construction and water damage. That said, this forum is invaluable to either equip me to do the work or know how to guide and judge good workmanship.

Now I just need to finish determining the best approach given the construction style that we have so far. Do you have any comments on my questions regarding the Fi Foil insulation and the backer board type?

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Old 03-11-2012, 01:55 PM   #35
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Post a link to this "fi foil AA2 hi perm (perm rating of 9)".
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:58 PM   #36
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Fi Foil AA2 Hi Perm:

http://www.fifoil.com/Builders/Produ...ductInfo/?ID=1
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Old 03-11-2012, 02:04 PM   #37
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No need to defeat the foil if it's got a perm rating of 9. It's not a vapor retarder at that rating that you need to be concerned about.

http://www.naima.org/insulation-know...retarders.html
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Last edited by dhagin; 03-11-2012 at 02:13 PM. Reason: +last bit
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Old 03-11-2012, 02:20 PM   #38
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Dana

Thanks, looks like I will just leave the Fi Foil in place on all walls. Now the only thing left is to decide on std white drywall vs cement board. Tradeoffs being:

Drywall:

Recommended Kerdi substrate
Onsite already and being hung
Easy installation
No new material choices (some of which are more toxic for this healthy home)
Inspection hurdles
Stigma with subs


Cement board:

More moisture tolerant
Heavier
In some cases nasty dust
No county inspection issues
More accepted here
More chemicals
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Old 03-11-2012, 02:32 PM   #39
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Your inspection hurdles are the deal breaker. Suggest talking to your code official ASAP about it. The Schluter Kerdi system has code approvals listed on their website, but final approval is typically left to local jurisdictions. Personally, I'd go to the top (department head, building official, etc.) and not deal with individual inspectors if that's an option.

Calling your local Schluter rep, available on their site or by calling their home office, might help too. They often know about those sorts of things.
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Old 03-11-2012, 03:09 PM   #40
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Good recommendations. We have a pretty good relationship with the building dept. from the inspector to the managers as this is a healthy home and we have gotten other waivers or exceptions. They are more cooperative than most but there is a risk because it is different and it takes considerable time and possibly work stoppages. I don't think its a deal breaker but an irritant in the negative column. If the guy sees cement backer board - BAM, were done. If however, std drywall is the way to go, all things considered then we will need to fight that battle.

Anyone ever have an inspector flat out refuse to sign off on drywall and Kerdi?
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Old 03-11-2012, 03:30 PM   #41
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To be clear.

Don't wait for an inspection to find out if there's an issue using GWB. Find out before the inspection request. If there's a code issue in your AHJ, submit your request for a 'modification', defined in the administrative section of the code, to the building department before installing anything.

And yes, we hear stories about failed inspections. As mentioned above, it's typically left to the AHJ and often the on-site inspector, regardless of the system integrity or code approvals.
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Old 03-11-2012, 03:37 PM   #42
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Thats how I understood it on pre-approval and is the way that we have handled all exceptions. Have not failed an inspection yet and we have done some unique stuff.

On another note, has anyone ever seen evidence on any system that has used plain white drywall where there was a moisture problem that the drywall struggled with not related to the tile membrane failing such as sweating pipes, issues in an exterior wall, etc. where it looks like cement board may have resisted the issue in a significant way?
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Old 03-11-2012, 03:45 PM   #43
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A hypothetical - Has anyone ever built a home with backer board over all areas with water pipes behind them? Walls, ceilings, everywhere?

If you're concerned, use backer. Or, as it appears you're doin, build properly and worry no more. Seal both Kerdi & tile at penetrations too.
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Old 03-11-2012, 03:49 PM   #44
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Thanks for your timely responses so far.

I get builder and rebuilder, but "anti-builder"?
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:00 PM   #45
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Nothin hidden there George. Try not to over think it.
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