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Fireplace DraftStopper

The Fireplace DraftStopper is an inflatable urethane pillow that is installed beneath the fireplace damper to stop drafts that occur even when the damper is shut… Read more
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  • Before specifying efficient heating and cooling equipment, it’s important to do what we can to reduce heating and cooling loads. Insulation is one of the key products to consider here, but because there are so many insulation products on the market, we look for additional benefits. Examples include cellulose insulation with recycled content, mineral wool insulation with no flame retardants, and fiberglass insulation with no formaldehyde binders. Other products in this area are high-performance windows and glazings, products that contribute to building airtight envelopes, products that reduce thermal bridging, and window-retrofit products.

    With products in this area under constant development, we are always refining our approach. For example, as we have learned about insulation products with hazardous flame retardants and blowing agents that have high global warming potential, we have removed those products from GreenSpec, pending manufacturing changes. We encourage building professionals to pressure manufacturers for those changes through specification language and purchasing decisions.

Brent Ehrlich
Products Editor

The Fireplace DraftStopper is an inflatable urethane pillow that is installed beneath the fireplace damper to stop drafts that occur even when the damper is shut. After installation, the filling tube hangs down into the fireplace with an orange warning label to prevent fires from being lit when the unit is installed. Significant energy savings can be achieved by reducing air leakage from the building. The DraftStopper is available in two sizes to fit any masonry fireplace with a rectangular damper (Large) or any metal or zero-clearance fireplace with a round damper (Small).

Forces affecting the durability and performance of masonry wall systems include bulk water penetration, wicking of moisture, and solar-driven moisture movement. GreenSpec lists products designed to improve the durability and performance of masonry wall systems.

Masonry accessories that improve the durability and performance of masonry wall systems can include two-piece adjustable brick ties, brick veneer venting and clear cavity components. Note that clear cavity components represent a product solution that should be considered along with techniques for keeping the cavity space clear, such as loose sand and mortar cleanouts in the first course of the veneer.

An air barrier is made up of materials and components that are integrated into a system to restrict air flow through the building envelope.

Any material that has an air permeance equal to or less than 0.02L(s•m2) @ 75Pa (equal to the air permeance of drywall) can form part of an air barrier system. However, just having air barrier materials in a building does not create an airtight building. These materials and components must be joined into air barrier assemblies, which are then tied together with additional air barrier components to create a complete air barrier system.

According to the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA), air barrier materials must be integrated to create assemblies with maximum air leakage no more than 0.20 L(s•m2) @ 75 Pa (per ASTM E2357). Note that the air leakage rate for enclosures is about 10 times greater than the air leakage standard for materials.

Air barriers may or may not also act as a vapor retarder or weather barrier. The air barrier can be on the exterior, the interior of the assembly, or both. Air barrier products listed here are sheet or fluid-applied products designed to limit air infiltration through discontinuities in the building envelope while meeting the ABAA standard.

GreenSpec lists products here that contribute to an air barrier assembly by providing key connections where two materials or systems meeting, or filling holes at common weak points in an air barrier assembly. For more products that contribute to air barriers, see specific sections such as Foamed-in-Place Insulation and Weather Barriers.

LEED Credits

EAc1: Optimize Energy Performance

EAp2: Minimum Energy Performance

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