Message - Re: double drywall as thermal mass

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Posted by  Manuel Oliveros on October 15, 2002 at 09:36:36:

In Reply to:  Re: double drywall as thermal mass posted by gd on October 15, 2002 at 08:07:42:

For any underground use I would be wary of anything that can be deteriorated by humidity. Plaster based, cardboard based drywalls correspond to the types that suffer deterioration in the presence of condensation or water, so I would think twice in using such materials where there's risk of water presence, be it from external input, scarce ventilation, capilarity or condensation. In Spain (not specially damp area) plaster is better proscribed from any exposed application.

As long as you provide ordinary controlled ambient surrounding your drywalls you can use them without special concern, but take unto account what above.

Respect thermal storage in massive elements, these use to be far weightier than double drywall (as I understand it) is. Brick or stone walls are more appropriate, since as the quote above signals, it is expected the massive wall through its thermal inertia will contribute to keep some (close to the average intended) temperature. Hence for a heating situation both exposition to the sunlight during the day and some way of enhanced insulation during the night are required; the wall itself it is expected to be quite massive.

I can say our buildings here are more massive typically than american houses, and in spite of our moderate climate and the bigger mass effect, radiant mean tempreature, which is an important contributor to comfort descends quite quickly, so except for well analyzed "green" projects I wouldn't rely much on a solution centered mainly on thermal mass for a heating problem here. It is far more probable here to feel the excess of heat due to exposition to the sun than be aware from confort gained from it. However, it is also clear some rooms benefit from such exposition in being more livable, so one can put to use sunlight to work for heating, but a good analysis, or simply the experience in any given house or flat indicates when to close blinds etc to get the maximum comfort. In the very room I am now, for example, it is typical in spring and autumn for me have to close the glazed door to the terrace towards 5:00 PM local time for comfort; I have had to do so just a bit ago. Equally, in winter, the freeze causes significant discomfort at about 4 or 5:00 AM due to the descent of radiant mean temperature: any help of the mass of the walls of the room is by then overcome by the cool conditions outside.

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