This is a companion blog post to the video I shot at the University of Texas Construction Durability Lab. Please watch the video before reading this post. Next, here is the link to the official results published in the trade journal Construction Specifier.
OK, you've seen the video and you are asking, who's the winner? First, a disclaimer: I'm not an official member of this team, and this post is simply my observations and my inferences.
So, who is the winner? There is no clear winner here. I think the takeaway from this video and the experiments at the UT Durability Lab is that you choose your WRB based on your exposure.
Houses with lots of exposure need more-robust WRBs. If you are building a commercial building, that likely means a thick-mil Fluid Applied WRB. I'd pick one that is faring well in this test. I would personally stay away from the thin-mil WRBs; the fact that the team didn't even test the thin versions tells you something.
If you are building a single-family residence with 2-foot overhangs and little exposure, then the more "basic" housewraps will work for you if you detail them and install them correctly.
Stay tuned for my "Nail Sealability Testing" video—that I also shot at UT with the grad student who tested all these products—to find out how well they sealed around nail penetrations. I should have that video on my channel this week and a blog post about it next week.
Thanks for reading, and be sure to comment below. I'd love your feedback and opinions.
Risinger Homes is a custom builder and whole house remodeling contractor that specializes in Architect driven and fine craftsmanship work. We utilize an in-house carpentry staff and the latest building science research to build dramatically more efficient, healthy and durable homes.