previous
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • Radiant Heat Comparison
    Radiant Heat Comparison
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • Ultimate Deck Build 2015
    Ultimate Deck Build 2015
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • Remodeling Articles
    Remodeling Articles
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
next
Pin It

Backyard Tape Test

An unscientific—but telling—trial of air-sealing tapes

Proper air-sealing is one of the keys to an energy-efficient house, but choosing the right air-sealing tape can be a challenge. In this article, senior editor Martin Holladay writes about his informal backyard test of 11 air-sealing tapes. Holladay attached several substrates to his shed, then applied strips of various tapes to see how they held up over the course of a late-fall month. The tapes use three types of adhesive: rubberized asphalt, butyl, or acrylic. The 11 tapes spanned a wide price range and included products from Dow, Venture, Nashua, Siga, Zip System, Polyken, 3M, and Pro Clima. The substrates included XPS, foil-faced polyiso, plywood, OSB, housewrap, and polyethylene. In the end, Holladay learned that there is no such thing as all-purpose tape and that certain tapes work better with specific substrates. This article includes sidebars about the economics of choosing tapes and substrates, and about the issue of vapor permeance.

Backyard Tape Test
Plus get a free gift
Become a Fine Homebuilding Member. Start your free trial now