Question? Just ask us!
Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
InspectAPedia ® Home
ENERGY SAVINGS IN BUILDINGS
AIR BYPASS LEAKS
AIR LEAK DETECTION TOOLS
APPLIANCE EFFICIENCY RATINGS
BASEMENT HEAT LOSS
BLOWER DOORS & AIR INFILTRATION
BTU MONITORS & HEATING COST APPORTIONMENT
CATHEDRAL CEILING INSULATION
COMBUSTION AIR for TIGHT BUILDINGS
DEW POINT CALCULATION for WALLS
DEFINITION of HEATING & COOLING TERMS
DUCT SYSTEM & DUCT DEFECTS
ENERGY STAR PROGRAM
FLOOR RADIANT HEAT Mistakes to Avoid
FRAMING DETAILS for BETTER INSULATION
FREEZE-PROOF A BUILDING
GREEN BUILDING CONSTRUCTION
HEAT LOSS in BUILDINGS
HEATING COST SAVINGS METHODS
HOUSE DOCTOR, how-to be
INDOOR AIR QUALITY & HOUSE TIGHTNESS
INSULATION INSPECTION & IMPROVEMENT
LEED GREEN BUILDING CERTIFICATION
SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEMS
THERMAL IMAGING, THERMOGRAPHY
THERMAL MASS in BUILDINGS
WIND ENERGY SYSTEMS
WIND TURBINES & LIGHTNING
WINDOWS & DOORS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
This article discusses the design details, color, coating of a mass wall intended to absorb and store solar heat for a passive solar energy home. Accompanying text are reprinted/adapted/excerpted with permission from Solar Age Magazine - editor Steven Bliss.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2015 InspectApedia.com, All Rights Reserved.
The question-and-answer article below paraphrases, quotes-from, updates, and comments an original article from Solar Age Magazine and written by Steven Bliss.
Topic: Use of Drywall over Masonry Block Thermal Mass Wall
In a passive solar home I am building, the entire first floor is enclosed by vermiculite-filled, 10-inch concrete block externally insulated by 2-inch thick polystyrene insulating board. I am inquiring about the efficiency of covering the interior surface of the masonry block thermal mass wall with drywall that would be attached directly to the block by adhesive.
Will solar-gain heat be absorbed by the drywall and thereby conducted to and stored in the underlying masonry wall? -- David Kallett, Pompton Lakes NJ
If the thermal mass walls are intended to absorb and store solar heat, the wall surface should have high absorptance (a dark color) and conductivity that equals or exceeds that of the storage materials themselves (the concrete block) so that heat will flow into the thermal storage wall at least as fast as if the wall were left uncovered.
You mention that most of the walls will not receive direct sunshine (see our photo at page top), but will absorb heat from the room air. In this case the color of the surface [of walls not receiving direct sunlight] has little importance in the heat gain and storage of the mass wall.
Plaster on the block wall would be your best bet, since its internal properties are about the same as concrete block, and it would bond tightly and continuously to the block.
Gypsum board is almost as conductive as concrete block (k = 4.4 vs. 5.0 for concrete block). [See THERMAL MASS in BUILDINGS]. More important, however, is the bonding of the gypsum board or drywall to the block wall. Gluing in the typical fashion (beads of glue applied with a caulking gun) will leave air spaces that will impede the heat flow from the drywall into the block wall.
So if you can't plaster the block wall, how about just painting it?
By the way, directly irradiated mass is several times more effective than convectively coupled mass - or in simple terms, a thermal mass block wall that receives direct sunlight is several times more effective than thermal mass walls that do not.
Here we include solar energy, solar heating, solar hot water, and related building energy efficiency improvement articles reprinted/adapted/excerpted with permission from Solar Age Magazine - editor Steven Bliss.
The link to the original Q&A article in PDF form immediately below has been preceded by an expanded/updated online version of this article.
Our page top photo shows the interior wall of a low-cost passive solar home discussed at this website.
Continue reading at FLOOR COVERING for OVER THERMAL MASS SLABS or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.
Suggested citation for this web page
Green link shows where you are in this article series.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
No FAQs have been posted for this page. Try the search box below or CONTACT US by email if you cannot find the answer you need at InspectApedia.
Questions & answers or comments about finding, using, diagnosing, repairing, or replacing water pressure gauges on private well systems.
Use the "Click to Show or Hide FAQs" link just above to see recently-posted questions, comments, replies, try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.
Search the InspectApedia website
HTML Comment Box is loading comments...
Technical Reviewers & References