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Old 05-27-2009, 06:46 AM
 
Location: Mill Creek Hundred
293 posts, read 638,912 times
Reputation: 505

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Although I like the concept, my biggest concern with straw-bale construction would be that in some parts of Alaska it tends to rain A LOT. If any of that straw gets damp or wet, are we setting up conditions for mold and mildew to grow inside the walls? My wife is VERY allergic to that stuff...

So, if you don't put your wife inside the wall, she should be OK?
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Interior AK
4,729 posts, read 8,377,273 times
Reputation: 3349
Straw bale is not recommended for extremely wet locations, but it is possible to protect the bales from the weather with the proper use of overhangs, plasters and detailing. If the walls get wet and stay wet because there isn't a long enough drying period or they are completely saturated, then, yes, they will begin to mold, mildew and decay. But so would any other conventional wall system with constant water infiltration and saturation. Straw bale homes are only slightly more vulnerable to water-related problems than stick-frame and log homes, and that's mostly a result of improper design and construction.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:19 PM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,209,805 times
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We built a strawbale cottage in New Mexico using wheat straw. The pluses for Alaska would be the high r-factor. Our strawbale is a post & beam construction with strawbale as infill. All exterior straw is covered with chicken wire & a hard cement plaster, thus totally sealed. The interior is gypsum plaster.
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Old 05-28-2009, 06:45 PM
 
Location: NC, USA
7,088 posts, read 12,711,785 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BudinAk View Post
Although I like the concept, my biggest concern with straw-bale construction would be that in some parts of Alaska it tends to rain A LOT. If any of that straw gets damp or wet, are we setting up conditions for mold and mildew to grow inside the walls? My wife is VERY allergic to that stuff...


Bud
That certainly sounds like a valid concern to me. Neither hay nor straw does well after a soaking.
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Old 05-28-2009, 08:02 PM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,358 posts, read 32,333,300 times
Reputation: 13697
Just use fiberglass!
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Old 05-28-2009, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Too far from Alaska
1,435 posts, read 2,319,454 times
Reputation: 271
The beauty of the plaster that covers the straw is that it "breaths", it allows moisture to escape. Hence no trapped moisture, no mold growth.
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Old 05-18-2015, 03:51 PM
 
1 posts, read 460 times
Reputation: 10
If you'd like to build a strawbale home in Alaska contact me on 907-230-7321. I'm about to begin servicing Alaskans with this incredible natural building method and can help you get started even if you're an owner builder.
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Old 05-18-2015, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Anchorage
842 posts, read 612,580 times
Reputation: 921
I bet the voles love you.
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