Track 1: Effects of Climate Change in Warm Weather Coastal Regions
APT Student Scholar Abstract and Application
The growing need for improving energy performance of historic buildings in recent decades has seen with it a growing desire to insulate external walls in historic properties. Since changing the façade is often inappropriate, a common approach is to insulate the interior face. Existing guidance on exactly how to undertake such a renovation however, is often ambiguous, contradictory, and insufficient. Much of the pervading literature will recommend for interior insulation, while a plethora of other guidelines will recommend against installing insulation in any fashion. The level of uncertainty circulating around insulating historic walls can often be frustrating for property owners, architects, and preservation professionals.
This presentation will explain the progressive research behind a comprehensive and in-depth study of guidelines and professional practices related to wall insulation retrofits in historic buildings of North America. The study is part of a larger ongoing research grant from the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training. For which, the presenter is the graduate research student in charge of collecting and reviewing guidelines for trends, similarities, and differences. He was also integral in developing a questionnaire that was distributed to preservation professionals whom had worked closely on physical, real-life retrofitted case studies.
The presenter will discuss the results of current research on the subject of insulating the walls of historic buildings in a two-fold agenda. One, a systematic review of available guidelines, standards, and recommendations disseminated in whitepapers developed by governmental bodies, nongovernmental preservation organizations, and professional societies; and two, a survey of case study examples of wall insulation retrofits actually used in current practice. The breadth of the survey covers a wide range of wall construction types and U.S. climate zone in an effort to compile a holistic database of buildings with interior insulation retrofits in service. This, coupled by the overview and summation of prominent guidelines from the preservation field, will provide a body of support for this topic and increase the confidence of practicing professionals.