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Myths about continuous insulation and building enclosure systems

Explore our webpage dedicated to debunking myths around the design and construction of continuous insulation and building enclosure systems – separating fact from fiction with evidence-based information, clear explanations, and published research.

Debunking Misconceptions About Continuous Insulation and Building Enclosure Systems

MYTH

“Thermal bypasses are good.”

FACT

No, they’re not; thermal bypasses are awful for thermal efficiency. Thermal bypasses – commonly referred to as gaps, cracks, and unintended air movement – fundamentally undermine the thermal integrity of building enclosures, reduce efficiency, and lead to significant energy loss.  This increases energy demands for heating and cooling. Research indicates that thermal bypasses can cause up to 93% additional heat loss.  SMARTci is the only building enclosure system that is guaranteed to eliminate thermal bypasses.

MYTH

“Using Tek screws in FRP provides permanent fastening.”

FACT

No, they don’t – Tek screws only provide temporary fastening into FRP.  Since the structure of FRP degrades continually over time, any fastener solely attached to FRP can only be used structurally in a temporary capacity – especially under extreme temperatures and service loads. On the other hand, CMH performs as good as or better than steel, meaning fasteners attached to composite metal hybrid materials are fastened permanently. 

MYTH

“If a wall assembly is compliant with NFPA 285, then all components of that wall assembly must be non-flammable, too.”

FACT

This is fundamentally wrong. NFPA 285 assesses fire performance of full exterior wall assemblies. Other tests, like UL 94 and ASTM E84, asses burning characteristics and flammability/smoke development of building materials, respectively. Each of these industry tests measure different aspects on non-flammability and are not interchangeable. GreenGirt CMH is compliant with NFPA 285 and achieves the highest and safest ratings on both UL 94 and ASTM E84.

MYTH

“If a product has a Declare label, it is automatically Red List free.”

FACT

While a Declare label provides transparency about a product’s ingredients and environmental impact, it does not necessarily mean the product is free of Red List chemicals. The Declare label can indicate the presence of Red List chemicals and categorize them, but it is important to verify the specific details and check for Red List Free certification to ensure the product meets those criteria.