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Historic Brick: Balancing Preservation and Climate Action

Mar 5, 2024 9:00:00 AM

Insulating behind historic brick poses challenges for architects and preservationists alike. While it promises energy efficiency gains, there are concerns about its impact on the integrity of the brick and the building as a whole. However, with proper testing and expert guidance, it can be navigated successfully.

waz-lght-a5_peH6RLzg-unsplashHistoric brick structures are not just architectural marvels; they are also a piece of our heritage. However, the pressing need for climate action often clashes with preservation efforts. Adding insulation behind historic brick can alter its drying potential and lead to issues like increased freeze-thaw cycles, potentially causing damage. Nevertheless, there are ways to mitigate these risks.

One approach involves sending brick samples to reputable labs for testing. These tests, combined with expert analysis and onsite evaluations, can provide invaluable insights into whether and how to proceed with insulation. Organizations like Building Science Corporation have contributed significantly to understanding this complex issue.

Cx Associates’ building enclosure team would love to hear from you if you have experience with historic brick on your projects. If so, please take a few minutes to fill out the short form below. Your insights and experiences with historic brick preservation and insulation are invaluable for shaping future strategies. By sharing knowledge and collaborating, we can strike a balance between preserving our architectural heritage and meeting the challenges of climate change. Information provided will be kept anonymous and be used for a future blog post. We look forward to hearing from you, and sharing what we find!

Historic Brick Questionnaire

Written by Eric Morrow