Air Sealing an Energy Efficient Home

Air Sealing an Energy Efficient Home

Is your home leaking?  A leaky home can result in high energy bills.  Air leakage takes place when outside air enters a home and warm indoor air leaves the home uncontrollably through small cracks and openings throughout a home.

Where Can Air Leak From?

There are many areas where air can escape:

  • Electrical outlets
  • Door and window frames
  • Electrical and gas service locations
  • Under exterior walls
  • Weather stripping around doors
  • Attic hatches
  • Cable or phone lines
  • Dryer and hood fan locations

Air can also escape around pipes, wires, foundation seals, and mail slots.  To heat and cool a leaky home can be very expensive.

Air Sealing a New Home

Reducing the amount of air that leaks uncontrollably in and out of a house is a key part of building an energy efficient home.   It’s also an important part to controlling moisture and mold in a home.

When building a new home, the best time to air seal a home is at the framing stage.  Sealing takes place around the electrical and plumbing locations as well as all penetrations that enter and exit the home.  The minimal cost in materials and labour is worth it when you consider that air leakage amounts to 25% to 40% of the average heat loss in winter and cool air loss in the summer.

Sealing an R-2000 Home

An R-2000 home is a home built to standards that make the home on average 50% more energy efficient than homes built to the standard BC Building Code.  R-2000 homes are better sealed than a standard new home resulting in reduced drafts, cold spots, dust, pollen, pests, and noise.

Abbotsford District Career Programs

Employer Award

Employer Award!

It was an honour this afternoon to receive the Employer Award from the Abbotsford School District.

Sonbuilt Custom Homes values apprentices who want to become certified tradespeople.  The District Career Program in Abbotsford offers students a variety of career and technical training while completing their regular high school courses.  Students can choose from a variety of trades, technical and/or university transition programs.

We appreciate the opportunity to work with students who intend to become certified carpenters.  Thank you Abbotsford!  We are thrilled to receive this award!

A Langley Home Teardown

Tear Down and Build New

As housing prices continue to rise in the Fraser Valley and the cost of land increases, there is growing interest among homeowners to tear down the home they currently live in and build a new home on the same land.  A common question when thinking about tearing down the home you currently live in – is this a good idea or not?

Identifying a Teardown

Older homes with structural issues, homes with outdated kitchens or limited bathrooms, and homes that incur increasingly high energy bills are often identified as homes to demolition.  Structural concerns can be expensive to repair and frequently these repairs do not add extensively to the value of the home were you to consider selling.  Whole house renovations involving changing room sizes, updating finishes, and adding more rooms can be expensive.  There are times when demolishing the home and building new may not be that much more than a renovation.

How Do I Decide Between a Renovation and a Teardown?

Sometimes the cost to repair an older home is just not worth it.  An abundance of mold, a damaged foundation, extensive rot in the structure – problems can lead to surprisingly expensive repair costs.  Unhealthy indoor air, hazardous older materials, wet basements. These concerns need to be addressed to ensure the home is safe to live in.

Does the home need new windows, updated electrical wiring, and a new roof?  Does the existing layout make sense for your family or would a renovation include extensive floorplan changes?  Demolishing the home and building new may be the best option if the cost of a renovation is high.

What Is the Cost to Tear down a Home?

Tearing down a home can vary in cost.  Prices can depend on the size of the home, the location of the site, and what hazardous materials are found in the home.

What Permits Do I Need?

Your local municipality will be able to determine what permits are needed for your specific home.  Every home is different and each municipality has its own requirements before a demolition can be done.

What is a Hazmat Report?

Worksafe BC will require a “Hazardous Materials” report before a teardown can begin.  This report will identify what hazardous materials are in the home.  Some materials may need to be removed prior to demolition.

How Much Will a Hazmat Report Cost?

Depending on the size and age of the home, a hazmat report can start at around $500.

How Long Will a Demolition Take?

A home can be torn down in just a few days once reports and permits are in place.

If you like your neighbours and want to keep your kids in the same school but find that your home just isn’t suitable for your changing needs, consider tearing down your home and building a new one.  I’m sure you have many questions and we’d like to help answer them.  Contact us today.  We are happy to chat!

Healthy Home

Easy Tips for a Healthy Home

If you already own a home, here are some easy tips to follow to keep your home environment healthy:

  1. Ventilation – Make sure you have fresh air circulating in your home.
  1. Use eco-friendly products – Keep air fresher and cleaner using toxin and pollutant free products
  1. Choose hardwood flooring – Carpets can hide dust, pet hair, fungus, and other harmful particles
  1. Unplug – Switch any technological devices not in use
  1. Remove your shoes – Shoes can carry pollen, dirt, and soil from the outdoors into your home
  1. Get it tested – Ensure your home is radon free by getting it tested
  1. Ensure paint is dry and cured – While it’s exciting to set up a freshly painted room, ensure that paint is dry and cured before using it.
  1. Change that shower curtain – Rotate your shower curtain regularly and avoid ones made from vinyl as they do become moldy quickly.