Roof Insulation Options for Cob Houses

There are a variety of natural materials you can use for roof insulation in your cob home.


| April 24, 2013



The Cob Builders Handbook by Becky Bee, Chelsea Green Publishing

With “The Cob Builders Handbook” you can learn to make cob, design your own cob home and set out to build it.


Cover Courtesy Chelsea Green Publishing

Cob (an old English word for lump) is old-fashioned concrete, made out of a mixture of clay, sand and straw. Becky Bee’s  The Cob Builders Handbook (Chelsea Green Publishing, 1998) is a friendly guide to making your own earth structure, with chapters on design, foundations, floors, windows and doors, finishes and, of course, making glorious cob. From sod to straw, wool to wood, there are a variety of roof insulation options for cob houses. Learn about the pros and cons of each material in this excerpt taken from “Roofs: Insulation.”

You can purchase this book from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS store: The Cob Builders Handbook.

Insulation can be anything that creates still air spaces. Lots of roof insulation makes a house comfy. In most climates, insulating the roof is extremely important.

The temperature inside your house will always try to equalize with the outside temperature. A generous layer of roof insulation will help a lot in keeping heat inside when it’s cold out, as well as keeping the hot summer sun from making your house too warm. So insulate your roof!

How much insulation?

Check with local builders to find out how much is suggested for your area. They will probably tell you something like, ‘an R-value of 35’?! R-values are simply units of measurement used to describe how much insulation-value a particular material will provide. A higher number means a greater ‘resistance to heat-flow’. The building supply store can tell you what the R-values are for the insulation materials they sell. You’ll have to do more research to estimate the R-values of less conventional insulation materials. When in doubt, more is better.

quest.taylor1
5/23/2013 1:37:29 PM

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