• Denise Garcia

Blog Post #7: And the Roof Goes On...

Updated: Jul 21, 2019

The following blog will chronicle the construction of a new Zero Energy Ready Home

designed by Domain Design Architects and located on San Juan Island, Washington. Denise Garcia and her husband, Eric Schmidt, who together have degrees in architecture, landscape architecture and city planning, have been passionate about environmentally responsible design since their student days at MIT. Their new ZERH home is the culmination of over 30 years each of professional experience. We hope this blog will inspire others to consider building a Zero Energy Ready Home.

San Juan Island, July 12, 2019

Cape Drive Zero Energy Ready Home

Blog entry #7- And the Roof Goes On...

It's been two-and-a half weeks since the last blog post and work on the roof continues with the installation of the 2x6 over-framing, which will provide the overhang (eaves) of our roof. We love how the 3:12 slope of the framing perfectly mimics the shoulder of Mt. Findlayson beyond. This will be the approach to our home and we're tickled with the result.

The 2x6 over-framed roof sit atop the roof sheathing of our lower roof. The lower roof is part of the primary building envelope that provides thermal, moisture and air barriers. The over-framed roof provides shape to our roofline and ensures that rain will be directed away from the building envelope via a system of eaves, gutters and downspouts.

In the view from below to the west side of the house the 2x6 over-framed roof is shown. On the left side of the house window installation has begun in the Master Bedroom.

On the north side of the house, window installation is complete in the Guest Bedroom. The "frame" around the windows is made from a product called Thermal Bucks, which allows the window to be installed 2" out from the wall sheathing. A relatively new product in high-performance home building, Thermal Bucks replace the plywood bucks previously used in homes that utilize continuous exterior insulation. In our case, the entire house will be wrapped with 2" rock wool insulation boards. The Thermal Bucks provide the 2" frame for installing the window plus provide a thermal break between cold exterior temperatures and our wall framing.

Inside the house, Thermal Bucks material is stacked, ready to be used. Thermal Bucks are made from high-density EPS foam insulation wrapped in the same waterproof material used to line truck beds. They can be miter cut easily to form the "picture frame" on which windows are installed.

View from the Guest Room through the newly-installed window. We decided to use Andersen 100 Series windows in the north side bedrooms. Andersen windows gave us a quality product with low U-value that fit perfectly with our goals of building a Zero Energy Ready Home and staying within our budget. These casements have a U-value of .23, far below the code requirement of .30. The lower the U-value, the better.

In the Master Bedroom, window installation is partially complete. One of the perks of installing windows as "outies"- 2" out from the exterior wall sheathing- are deeper sills on the inside.

In the living room, window openings await the installation of window units. Wrap-around windows will provide a panoramic view of Fish Creek and make the corner as transparent as possible, an advantage to both us and our neighbors.

In the Dining Room, the 14'-0" wide x 8'-0" tall sliding patio door will provide access to a small deck where we'll be able to enjoy views of Fish Creek and our shared dock. Looking forward to having my first cup of coffee on the deck!

From the dock below, the roofline of the house is taking shape. The 2x6 over-framing will provide a good system for directing rain water to gutters and downspouts.

Further down on the dock itself, the view of the house is filtered by the contorted firs and madrone trees in our shoreline vegetation buffer zone.

Back at the street, Eric puts the finishing touches on our new mailbox. The gabion cage that forms the base is filled with rocks from our foundation excavation: Jurassic-era metamorphosed siltstone and sandstone. It's the ultimate recycling!

The finished mailbox in all its glory.

We even got a "thumbs up" from Rebecca, our mail carrier. Not bad for a couple of DIY-ers!

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