Buttoning up for cold weather

There’s been a big push during the last week to get the roof finished so we’re ready for colder days ahead. Jeff, JR and Troy have hustled to get house framing done, breezeway trusses up, roof sheeting on and covered, and facia boards in place. Late Monday they nailed a product called Cor-A-Vent to carefully fitted boards and put the assembled pieces under the eaves, where the roof meets the walls, for ventilation. (Cor-A-Vent is strips of corrugated plastic, layered, with a thin fiber covering the channels at one end to keep insects out while air flows through.)


Eric Gehrke’s been on site painting breezeway trusses, breezeway roof sheeting and eaves of the house. Warm days come and go now, and rain forced him inside to do pre-assembly finishing for the breezeway.


Our roof finish is being fabricated and installed by Architectural Metal Specialists of Onalaska, Wisconsin. Chad, who’s leading installation, visited early Saturday to check out the site. He was back with help on Monday to fabricate panels. After a couple of damp days and no action, we expect them back tomorrow.


In the midst of this, we’re hustling. General contracting is not for the faint-hearted, and John and I are glad to be tag-teaming. The project fills every crack of spare time, with an ongoing need to stop, think, learn, decide, call, buy, ship, try, ask, connect, imagine, work, research, meet, check, confirm, tell, choose, deliver and double check the budget. We wanted a meaningful challenge and a chance to contribute to this Passive House conversation, and we got them!


  1. Nancy, looks like a fabulous project. So enjoy reading your post. Loved having you both at the wedding. Looking forward to seeing your new home! XO julieann


Lanesboro, Minnesota
Climate Zone 6 (cold/moist)
Latitude: 43° 44' 18'' N
Longitude: 91° 54' 48'' W

House Size

Net Treated Floor Area: 1,514 SF
Gross Square Footage (House only): 2,210 SF

Building Envelope

Roof: R-99
Wall: R-61
Ground: R-53

Windows & Doors

Glazing: U-0.10 BTU / hour / sq. ft.
Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): 0.48”
Frame: U-0.19 BTU / hour / sq. ft.

Modeled Performance

Specific Primary Energy Demand (Source Energy Demand): 12.1 kBTU / sq. ft. / year

Specific Space Heat Demand: 7.0 kBTU/sq. ft. / year

Peak Heating Load: 7,047 BTU / hour

Space Cooling Demand: 0.44 kBTU / sq. ft. / year

Peak Cooling Load: 3,625 BTU / hour

Pressure Test Goal: Whole House Air Changes Per Hour (ACH) = 0.4 ACH 50


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